When it comes to building and scaling your business one of the aspects that matters most is creating a solid and reliable customer base, who benefits as much from you as you do from them.
Here are our 5 tips for creating mutually beneficial customer relationships:
1. Under promise and over deliver
It happens all too often; you promise the moon and the stars but the deadline is looming and you find yourself unable to deliver.
Well at least you tried right? Wrong!
There is nothing worse than disappointing your client because you could not deliver on your promises.
When it comes to delivery, always make sure that you exceed your client’s expectations. This is made easier by setting mutually realistic goals, that will help keep you and your clients happy.
2. Be reliable
Now, we’re not saying that you should be answering phone calls and emails from clients at 23h00 on a Saturday night, but being reliable and easily accessible is invaluable for customer retention.
– Be available for your clients as often as possible, ensuring that they can reach you for important and pressing matters.
– Respond within a reasonable time frame and have a realistic turn-around (don’t be the guy that answers an email two weeks late).
– Keep in touch regularly, and continuously assess changes in their needs.
– Let them know when you’re not available.
3. Don’t be afraid to ‘fire’ your client
Some relationships impact more negatively than positively on your business. In such cases, it doesn’t hurt to be honest with yourself and your client and suggest parting ways. Explain that you believe that it would be mutually beneficial to end the relationship. Try to do this in a constructive way and remember, never close doors.
As important as it is to have a strong client base, it doesn’t help having clients that have an adverse impact on your business.
4. It’s the small things
This is where you can get creative! There is no exact science to what defines the “small things”, and it will change depending on the type of client you have and the type of business you are involved in. However, small actions such as remembering your client’s birthday for example, go a long way when it comes to customer retention. Your client will appreciate the attention to detail and your small actions can have big results. Remember “Customer is King” and the customer is equally, if not more important than you are in the development and growth of your business.
5. Make an effort to understand your client and their needs
We cannot stress the importance of this point enough! When engaging a client, take the time to thoroughly understand their needs. This will enable you to offer them the best possible service and ensure that the relationship is viable from the outset.
Over and above this, you need to understand that your clients needs are constantly changing, and it is your job to keep on top of this. Being able to adapt to their changing environment helps them to understand your commitment to them, which will undoubtedly boost their confidence in your working relationship.