Making Lasting Customer Relationships

Relationships are vital aspects of human interactions. These are not only important for the social human nature; they can be useful in other fields such as business and corporate operations. If you are a business entrepreneur, you might be aware of how necessary customer relations are when it comes to the success of any business. And building these relationships is in itself a vital step.

agentMake all interactions as pleasant as possible. Few people can maintain a healthy, ongoing relationship with a person who is difficult to deal with, and business relationships operate in a very similar way. From the way you and your employees answer the telephone to the way you handle returns, all customer interactions should be streamlined and managed in a way that the customer comes out feeling like a winner.

Focus on meeting needs. Instead of telling customers how great your business and its products are, tell them how you are going to meet their needs. What problem are you solving for them? If you can make someone’s life easier or more pleasant, it will be easy to be viewed as a friend, an entity that the customer has an ongoing relationship with.

Create an aesthetically pleasing environment. Studies have shown over and over that the public prefers attractive people for both personal and business relationships. While aesthetics aren’t everything, they are a huge part of the overall picture.

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If you keep good customer relationship, you will not only keep them around for so long, you also stand to benefit from other advantages that come with keeping your customers close through favorable relations.

Customer relationship marketing’s focus on extending the customer life-cycle ultimately results in increased profitability. To start, the cost of acquisition occurs only once, at the beginning, so the longer the relationship, the lower the cost. Long-term customers tend to be more loyal, and also less price sensitive. They will willingly promote on your behalf by making referrals and recommendations and passing on promotions.

Relationship marketing is a type of customer-centric marketing that emphasizes customer retention and satisfaction, rather than focusing solely on sales transactions. It recognizes the long term value of the customer and strives to broaden communication (beyond advertising alone) to enhance the overall customer ‘experience’.

Let’s face it, when we go on to a company’s website, there’s so much more that goes into the experience than purchasing the product alone. There’s the look and feel of the website. Is it easy to navigate? Is it savvy enough? Too overwhelming? Can I contact customer service via instant message? Is the site easily viewed on my mobile phone, etc.? All of these elements create an overall experience which will either encourage the customer to continue using your site or turn to a competitor’s.

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Fail to uphold positive customer relationship and you fail entirely in any business operation you engage. Lack of satisfactory customer relationships is a serious peril to any business, starting from low sales to dissatisfaction and high competitors’ advantage, to mention just but a few.

Lost Sales

Poor management of customer relations leads to ineffective sales calls and lost opportunities. For example, some customer relations management models, often known as CRMs, use technology to evaluate company goals, sales objectives and company deadlines to help sales agents sell products or services. More effective CRMs use client demographics, customer needs and customer priorities to increase sales and maintain customer loyalty.

Dissatisfied Customers

Shortsighted customer relations management results in unhappy, dissatisfied customers. Sales agents who use one presentation style to attract new customers or keep current ones often fall short. Some customers are interested in the newest products and want details on improved or upgraded merchandise or services. Others prefer the tried-and-true and simply want efficient service; ensuring products arrive quickly and safely.

Increased Competition

A mediocre customer relation leads to increased competition. If your company doesn’t know how to effectively ensure strong customer relations, then you can bet your competitors will try to steal your clients. They might offer better services, free technical training, troubleshooting advice, free product samples or one-on-one personalized assessments to meet customer demands. Companies that focus on their internal pipeline, rather than customer needs, will likely lose out to their competitors, suggests “Forbes.” Poor customer relations management gives your competitors an edge.

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