CRM – Treat your customers as friends
There are myriad schemes and offers out there to build your customer base. You’ll know plenty of gimmicks to attract people into your ‘funnel’: competitions, flash sales, hooks, free offers, free trials…mostly, they will achieve good results for you, in the short term. If you are in it for the long haul and your aim is to create a thriving business with a loyal customer base, it needs to be far less superficial. You need to be a good friend, to every single customer.
For a long-term relationship of value to both parties, treat your customers as you would treat your friends. The fundamentals of ‘relationship rules’ are the same.
- Get to know each other, form an open dialogue, listen, communicate in a way that works for them.
- What do they like? What do they need? What makes them tick? What can you do for them? Why do they like you?
- Be honest, and honourable, always aim to do the right thing, you want them to know they can trust you.
- They like you, they chose you for a reason, be true to yourself and your brand and don’t try to be all things to all people, you will quickly lose your way.
- Know what you are good at, and offer that, fine tune it, perfect it and be the friend of choice.
- As you nurture your friendship, you will earn trust. Be there for them, continue to support them with what they need and they will continue to support you.
Be Honest – Do as you say you will, fulfil the promises you make
Listen – What do they expect of you? How do they feel about you? Are they happy?
Give – Your time and your attention
Know – yourself, your limitations as well as those of your friend, accept them with grace
Like – Yourself first, are you happy with who you are? Be likeable and you will be liked
Trust – Runs two ways, it is earned and easily lost, deserve trust.
A productive, loyal, and long term relationship that benefits both parties.