How to Build Excellent Customer Relationships
The customer is king, we’ve all heard that. Customers now rank trust and transparency just as highly as product quality. Purchasing decisions are often based on how authentic and trustworthy a business is perceived as being. Treat customers like pawns, and they will take their business elsewhere. Stay true to your message however, and they will reward you with loyalty. If the customer is king, then loyal customers are king-makers.
Here are some ways to build excellent customer relationships.
First and foremost, open the lines of communication. Customers have queries and comments. Invite their feedback. Listen to them and remember that communication is a two way street. Set up adequate customer support infrastructure and respond to their concerns in a timely manner. Have a point of contact for all queries. In a nutshell, be available to your customers.
Be authentic. Decide what your values are. Stick to your core message and what your brand believes in, and then commit fully. Create a mission statement and embrace it. Not only will it provide solid guidance to your business, it will help you develop a brand that will stand the test of time.
Bring value and consistency. Customer know when they’re being treated like cash cows. If they feel exploited, like a business is putting their concerns last, they won’t be loyal. Bring them real value and be consistent in delivering high quality products and/or services. Satisfied customers will share their experiences and help your brand stand out from the rest.
Last, and perhaps most evident, provide a high quality product or service. Every year, a quarter of a million products are launched. Approximately 90% of them fail. Great products/services hit people on an emotional level and provide a deep level of satisfaction as well as trust.
Make sure your products/services are constantly being tested for quality. Ensure you’re doing market research to keep up with customer feedback and expectations. You don’t have to spend a fortune doing it either. Stick to the principles of the lean startup methodology and you will save not only money but precious time too.
Written by Garry Johal