According to HubSpot, Relationship Marketing is, “a type of marketing that focuses on cultivating deeper, more meaningful relationships with customers to ensure long-term satisfaction and brand loyalty.”
Studies have shown that retaining current customers can at times bring in more revenue than bringing in new customers. It also usually costs less to keep your current customers happy, according to Frederick Reichheld of Bain & Company. Of course, we’re not saying that you should not be trying to attract new customers, but you should also be making sure that you are doing what you can to best retain your current customers that are worth keeping.
So, since you now know what Relationship Marketing is and why you should be working to retain customers, how do you do it properly?
To start, you have to get clients, right? Here are some tips for guidelines on following up. Remember that these guidelines can change and will depend on each client. Just like no snowflake is the same, the same goes for customers.
- Whenever you contact a customer, set the expectation right away so they know that you will be following up.
- Set an expectation of when they will get their proposal and what will be included.
- Let them know that you will be following up with them after X amount of days of when you sent the proposal.
- If it is a time-sensitive project then wait no longer than two days for a callback.
- Always follow through with the expectations that you set for them.
- Make sure that the customer knows that you’re there for them, but do not live and die by their business.
Now the customer has the proposal, has agreed to it, and is now ready to start working with you. Of course, expectations are different depending on what type of industry you are in. Construction companies, for example, will only be with customers as long as their project lasts. However, if they do a good job and are respectful and courteous, then they will probably get word of mouth recommendations along with staying top of mind for future projects that may come along with repeat customers.
To have customers stay with your business and stay happy, follow these tips.
- Make sure that you check in with your contact every so often. This should not be every week, as that could be too much. But once a month, check-in with them to see how they feel everything is going and how they are doing.
- Make sure that you’re not always talking business or trying to sell more services or products, but show that you genuinely care.
- Consider holidays or certain times to send small gifts or cards to show that you care and appreciate their business.
- If you see something that could help them with their business, such as an article, send it to them.
- If you are having customer appreciation or VIP events including sales or offers, have them be the first to know.
Again, no size fits all with these tips and guidelines. The main thing is to show that you care for the customers and appreciate them. Setting expectations helps them to know when they should hear from you and following through with these expectations shows a lot, since not every company would do that.