I wrote a few weeks back about focus and whether businesses spend more time chasing new customers rather than looking after the ones they have. Though new business is the lifeblood of a company so too is turning a one-time transactional customer into a repeat purchaser over the long term and ultimately into an advocate for a brand.
So how do you get customers to make a long term connection. Here’s five tips to get you started.
1. Deliver. Above all get the big things right, first time, every time. Become known for being reliable, your stock will rise and how you are perceived will develop over time.
2. But dont forget the little things. Knowing what makes your customer tick and demonstrating empathy counts. It might be as simple as fitting your reporting in with their reporting cycle, acting as their industry news filter, remembering a birthday or anniversary. Find what works and use it to cement your relationship.
3. Make yourself available. Be contactable at times and using tools that your customer chooses. Even in the best relationships, acknowledge that the guy writing the cheques still has a degree more power and should be treated with that in mind.
4. Play the long game. Regardless of volume and spend, within the available time window, make them feel like the most important client in the world. They may not have the budget and resource now, but they won’t stay in the same job for ever AND word of mouth referral is a powerful thing. Good worthwhile clients, for example, often take their agencies with them.
5. Add value. Depending on how you work, provide snippets of useful information, industry news or a comment a couple of times a week. The benefit to your customer is the gift of insight; the benefit to you is remaining front of mind.
How do you get your customers to love you?