How To Build More Profitable Customer Relationships In 3 Easy Steps…

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17th April 2018

If you want to build profitable customer relationships, there is a key thing you need to keep in mind: People buy from people.

Regardless of how big your business is, people feel more comfortable knowing there is a real person behind the corporate facade. You need to show this personal side of your business in the way you communicate to your customers, whether face-to-face or through any online or offline marketing you do.

The most important reason for doing this is that people are drawn to companies which show the human side of their business. If a company can demonstrate values which are (or for the most part are) directed towards the customer, they’ll find it far easier getting customers to engage with them.

For example…

Apple don’t just have a range of superior products. People buy (and stay loyal followers) because of the user experience they get when using an Apple product. They buy into the idea and values behind product development. Every product Apple creates is designed with the consumer in mind – to turn something quite technically complicated into something which is quite natural and intuitive to use.

Harley Davidson don’t just sell motorbikes, they sell the experience of owning and riding a superior motorbike – almost to cult status. This is why they have customers who, year on year, part exchange the perfectly good bike they bought last year for the latest model.

Nordstrom’s Department Store in the U.S. have been impressing their customers for a long time by offering an exceptional amount of personal service. Absolutely nothing is too much trouble. There is even one story (though not personally substantiated) where a customer was refunded for a set of car tyres even though Nordstrom’s didn’t sell that brand of car tyre!

Amazon know how to make you feel special. They excel at finding new and compelling ways of recommending additional products you may be interested in, looking at shopping habits based on data gathered from millions and millions of transactions.

These are all examples where the philosophy and sense of real people are used by companies, to help strengthen relationships with their customers, and is also shows why you need to continually find ways to establish more profitable customer relationships which you can build on.

Here are 3 quick and easy steps which may help you to do just that…

1. Be Certain About The 'WHO'.

If you’ve been fortunate enough to follow information marketer Dan Kennedy, you’ll no doubt have learned that your best chance of selling more of what you offer, is to be sure you are selling to the correct customers in the first place. Regardless of how good you are at what you do, selling to people who don’t want what you offer is as hard as pushing a boulder up a hill with one hand tied behind your back.You need to identify who wants what you offer before you are able to start building your customer relationships.

As the late, great direct marketer Gary Halbert used to say, if everyone in his live audience owned a burger stand, and he could have just one advantage, it wouldn’t be better quality meat, it wouldn’t be a special-secret-recipe-bbq-sauce, it wouldn’t be the speed at which the burgers could be served – it was something far more simple…

… a starving crowd!

Find YOUR starving crowd, and you’ll have a profitable business for life.

2. Get Up Close And Personal.

You need to keep in front of your customers regularly, so that you are the FIRST option they think of when they are ready to buy the product or service you offer. It is easy to use your marketing to influence a customer’s decision to buy:

  • you can highlight the benefits they will receive from you;
  • you can show them how you can solve their problem;
  • you can demonstrate how other customers, just like them, have benefited from buying from you;
  • you can illustrate to them how much time and/or money you can save them, but there is one thing you have absolutely NO control over, however hard you try… timing.

One independent study found that people bought a particular product (or service) because they needed it at the moment they bought it. So, if it’s not the right time for a customer to buy – regardless of how hard you try – you’re unlikely to sell to them.

Building profitable customer relationships takes time and commitment.

The trouble is, many organisations find it difficult to keep up the tactics they use, and ultimately end up abandoning them.

Calling customers regularly may sound great at the beginning of the year, but it’s not long before the calls start to happen less frequently, as focus shifts to gaining business from new customers.

Popular online tactics, such as e-newsletters and regular blogging, tend to stop through lack of resource to keep them published regularly… I know, it’s happened to me too! But you must find – indeed MAKE – a way for these things to happen, and keep on happening.

If you don’t, when the time comes for your potential customers to buy, it will be from one of your competitors, who have made the effort.

3. Make The Sale An Easy Sale.

There is an old saying which you may have heard… “Give a man a fish and he’ll eat for today, teach a man to fish and he’ll eat forever.” Yet for the majority of customers, this just isn’t true. People are looking for things which make their lives easier… and often, they just want it done for them.

So, ‘… teach a man to fish…’ is not really true at all. Most people just want you to give them the fish, preferable cooked already.

Try explaining what your product (or service) will do to help them, the ways they will benefit, and even tell them precisely what steps they must take – the easier you can make it for them to do business with you, the easier it is to create a profitable relationship where everyone wins.

Featured Image JHM

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