3 Levels of Listening for Insights Detection

No matter the size of the company, whether it is a start-up, medium or even global, for the relationship between brands it is essential to listen to the market to define the customer segments you are going to target, identify the offer with which you are going to satisfy them and recognize the needs of the company.
that will help you build a meaning that will make you different and important. To do this, it is necessary to have a better knowledge of customers, to empathize with them. This means connecting with customers across all channels, listening and talking to them the same way they do.

At the heart of branding are the emotions that build relationships and for the latter it is important to listen before speaking. Psychology tells us that, in human relationships, to build trust and credibility we have to be empathetic. The same is true in the relationship between brands and people. The best way to achieve this is to be receptive, to put ourselves in their situation, to understand why they say what they say, when they say it, what they are after…

If you want to be understood, you must first understand. To do this, it will be necessary to listen to and internalize the wants and needs of customers, understand what the competitive market is and its potential for the brand, understand how these circumstances can affect the business.

“Many do not listen with the intention of understanding, but with the intention of refuting”

None of this is possible if we don’t start by listening, asking the right questions to facilitate this understanding, reflecting on the answers obtained, and then, and only then, formulating the appropriate strategies. It is impossible to generate empathy in any other way. What happens is that, as S.R. Covey said, “many do not listen with the intention of understanding, but with the intention of refuting.” And therein lies the basis of many business mistakes.

For data to help grow the business and boost the brand, it must be used where it truly provides value: transformed into strategic actions. And this involves contextualizing them in a certain framework, intertwining them with the knowledge of the specific target and their behavior and using them to determine what the direction to follow should be.

1-Internal Focus

It is the most basic level of listening, here very much conditioned by internal factors (priorities, launches, ideas…). But paying too much attention to detail often doesn’t let you see the whole picture.

2-External Focus

This level surpasses the previous one, takes into account market variables and tries to capture all kinds of messages. To do this, it launches more questions with which it obtains more answers, and it works both at the customer level and at the employee level, including the competitive framework. Many brands have adopted social listening as part of their tools for listening to customers.

3-Built-in Spotlight

This is the right degree where you will find the good insights needed to create differential strategies and drive sustained growth. It combines internal and external focus and elevates listening to a higher level, social intelligence. This implies active listening, which starts from having first identified what is intended to be achieved in a given environment and thus build insights that allow data to be converted into knowledge and this into specific actions.

Branding combines different disciplines, strategy, creativity, communication and all of them share something in common: the psychology that facilitates the right relationship between the internal and external worlds of the Company. Let’s think that customers want to feel heard, that brands understand them. Without a doubt, listening is the first step in establishing any kind of relationship. But beware, listening is not simply hearing.


Carlos Puig Falcó

CEO of Branward®

Photos: Shutterstock

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