Building customer relationships. 7 best practices
Building customer relationships. 7 best practices
Acquiring a client should be the beginning of a joint journey based on long-term relationships and benefits for both parties. You gain a base of regular and loyal customers. Customers can take advantage of sensational service and discounts for loyal customers. However, as is very often the case in life, imagination and reality are two sharply different issues. This article is meant to encourage you to invest your strength and time in building customer relationships. Read on and you’ll learn why relationship marketing makes sense and is especially profitable for online businesses.
Why invest in building customer relationships?
It has been known for a long time that the best customer is the one who loyally uses your e-store or service offerings. It’s also no secret that sales based on positive relationships are the most effective – when a customer identifies with a brand, feels appreciated and well taken care of by it, there’s no need to somehow specially encourage them to buy. However, to be effective in these two areas – acquiring loyal customers and selling on the relationship – you need to put effort into building good practices for acquiring, serving and maintaining customer relationships. Why is it worth it?
- in this era of fierce competition, it is very easy to lose a customer, but if you provide a positive experience of contact with your store and its service, the customer will be more favorable to use your offer again
- a satisfied customer can recommend your store to their friends and other users
- Unfortunately, remember that this rule works both ways – because just one dissatisfied customer can tarnish your positive reputation in the industry, and this can be very costly, not only in terms of image. Experience and all studies show that people are more likely to share negative feelings, so it is worth taking care of the positive ones
- A well-served customer is most likely to return to a company where he or she felt well taken care of.
Relationship marketing – an investment for years to come
Relationship marketing involves constant contact with customers, who are considered one of a company’s most valuable resources. Contact with customers relates to the company’s day-to-day operations, services and products. In order to maintain such an ongoing contact, a dialogue with the customer is needed, which currently can take place seamlessly thanks to social media, instant messaging and apps. Providing customers with positive values and experiences increases their satisfaction with your store and convinces them to come back for more purchases. Relationship marketing consists of three very business-critical areas – customer service, product quality and marketing.
How do you build a relationship with your customers? 7 best practices
- Openness and honesty – treat customers well as we want to be treated ourselves. A sincere approach to relationships, including those at the vendor-customer level, results in mutual trust. Customers are sensitive to manipulation and lies, so if you want a strong brand, trusted by loyal customers – bet on the honesty of your communications, as well as the quality of your products and services.
- The art of asking questions – it is with questions that a true relationship with the customer begins. By asking the right questions, you can not only gain valuable knowledge about your customer’s preferences. The most important thing is that you give him the opportunity to open up and feel heard.
- Don’t make it all about sales – customer contact in relationship-based marketing should not be all about sales. You can ask for reviews of your products, ask if everything is fine with your services, inform about company news, and only later offer promotions or occasional price bargains. You will gain not only a relationship with the customer, but also the opportunity to build a valuable, because positive brand image with the help of
- This takes time and unusual channels to contact customers – building relationships can take a long time. Therefore, you should be patient and focus on providing customers with arguments for liking your company. A good step in this direction is to respond quickly to contact from the customer. Reply to emails, call back, contact via Messenger or LinkedIn. Any of the communication channels preferred by the customer is also good for you.
- How and what you say is important. In customer relations the language of benefits is important, it is with the help of this language that you will show the customer why it is your product or service that will be the solution to their problems.
- Realistic assistance and individual approach. Every customer likes to feel appreciated and treated individually. What this might consist of – sometimes solving a non-standard problem, performing an additional action beyond the agreed service, etc. A customer aware of the possibility of getting real help from you will recommend you to friends, because they will feel a relationship with your brand.
- It is worth talking about problems and apologizing. The most important thing in building relationships and dealing with customers is to go out of your way to meet them, even in difficult situations. In case of problems, the worst solution is to avoid contact or shift the blame to the customer. And don’t forget the word sorry – sometimes it solves even the most crisis situations.
Relationship marketing is the marketing of the future. It is definitely worth learning it as soon as possible. A customer with whom the relationship is built on a solid foundation is the most valuable thing that can happen to your company. Do you need a way to attract new customers with whom you can build long-term relationships? Give me a call – I can advise on what will work in your industry.
I have been active in Google Ads, SEO and e-commerce for almost 10 years. Now I share my knowledge and experience on the blog, on social media and in courses, audits and training sessions.
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