Marketing is a truly complex subject because it entails so many different branches that can leave businesses very confused.
It is very easy to miss a few directions of important types of marketing. It might be better to choose a few types of marketing and stick to them.
In this post, I will talk about the importance of relationship marketing and why it should make its way to your top ways of promoting your brand and products or services.
If you understand how your customers see your brand and products or services, you can offer them something more than that- unmet needs.
And if you offer them more, your relationship will become even stronger and it is better than producing brand loyalty in your customers.
What is relationship marketing?
Relationship marketing is basically building good relationships with your customers that will eventually turn them into loyal customers.
This is very important for brands because essentially the goal of any business is to have loyal customers that keep returning to the business and prefer that particular brand over other brands in the industry.
For example, if a random person that stopped you on the street asked you for some money because they really need it, you might be confused.
You would make your decision based on the amount of money they’re asking you, their appearance, how genuine they sound, or how good of a reason they have for urgently needing some money.
And in the end, you might end up giving them the money, but in a lot of cases, you might decide not to.
On the other hand, if some of your closest friends and family members came to you and asked you for the same amount of money, you would make your decision based on the relationship you have with them and the loyalty you have built.
It is basically the same when it comes to brands and businesses. The more people trust the brand, the more they will choose it in the pool of the competition.
Also Read: How to Build trust in your brand?
How to do relationship marketing?
You might be reading on relationship marketing for the first time, or you might have already implemented some things but you want to improve.
Either way, I will explain some of the ways that are effective for building long-lasting and trusting relationships with your customers that will come in handy.
Functional and very responsive customer service has to be the first step towards building trusting relationships with your customers.
Whatever other efforts you try to implement, if you can’t help out your customers when they’re having difficulties with your business, all efforts will be vain.
A lot of customers will choose another brand only due to poor customer service, and that speaks a lot about how customers want to be treated.
After all, they are choosing to spend their money on your business, so you have to respect them enough when they need you.
There are some things you can pay attention to when it comes to your customer service:
- Customer satisfaction should be a priority: customers are an essential part of your business and profits, and you have to go all the way in making sure that their satisfaction is on the top of your list.
- Create organizational awareness: create a customer-centric culture throughout the whole organization by creating high awareness in everybody that is involved with the business
- Rewards for customer service employees: you have to properly engage the customer service team with personal gains that they might have from being extra helpful and friendly with your customers.
Personalize the customer experience
If you want to build a relationship with your customers, you have to get personal.
Personalization can be hard to achieve, but in the end, it is always worth it.
Try to find out as much as you can about what your customers prefer. Gather information on what they buy, when they buy, how do they become aware of brands, what hobbies do they have, and whatever else you think might be relevant to you.
Using the gathered knowledge, build a custom experience, and a plan of communicating with your customers.
You can find out a lot of information and opinions of customers through surveys and fun online games with them.
This way, you can find what bothers them and what they like. Maybe they really like customer service, but the checkout process is too difficult.
And finally, don’t forget to tell them the results once you implement the changes or improvements that the customers suggested. They will appreciate that.
Relevant: SEO for building your brand
Content for the customers
Whatever business you’re in today, you almost have to have a blog or articles with great content that will support your customers.
A lot of businesses publish content as a place filler so they have something to publish.
Even though your business might not be tightly connected to content, what you publish is extremely important for your customers.
A good strategy is to ask your customers what they would like to know. You can make a survey, questions on social media, or even in newsletters.
Once you have the answers, the content should be focused on answering them in a short and concise manner.
Be informative, and on-point and give your customers what they need.
Another thing you can do is explain the inevitable processes in your business like for example online buying or selling products to the readers.
If you are selling computers, writing things from a technical point like what features do what, which computers are suitable to which needs, comparison between devices or parts, etc.
Building a good relationship with your customers also means recognizing the customers’ loyalty and rewarding it from time to time.
That is why it is a good idea to create a loyalty program that will offer special things to those of the customers that are loyal to your brand.
Often, brands will do these loyalty programs but be cheap on the rewards and give some insignificant rewards that might be offensive to customers and make things worse.
Try to think of a way that you can really reward your customers to be loyal and inspire other customers to become loyal to your brand.
Make them truly feel validated through different special incentives like:
- Member-only sales
- Big discounts
- VIP event invites
- Changes to win free products
This way, your loyal customers will have a proper incentive to stay loyal and they will have a good opinion of your brand which makes the word-of-mouth work even more.
If you want to go that extra mile to make a great impression on your customers, you have to extend the purchasing process.
After the purchase is done, make sure that you figure out how to properly make sure that they are satisfied and if they have some comments on the whole process.
You can work with several options here like sending a survey, asking for reviews, etc.
Moreover, you can also keep sending information to the customers who made a purchase on how to properly take care of the products that they bought, what other similar things you offer, that you’re available for them if there’s a defect, etc.
Think good about which type of follow-up strategy would best fit your type of business.
It doesn’t matter how you choose to follow-up as long as you are genuinely interested in what customers have to say and try to improve the things that are not working out from their perspective.
To sum up, relationship marketing can take your business to the next level and improve your overall ROI.
It may seem a lot of effort, but once you get into the mindset the whole thing will come naturally to you and the people in your organization.
Relationship marketing is the best choice if you are interested in building long-lasting relationships with your customers.
Now that you have the basic information and are aware as to why is it important and how you can properly do it, make sure you implement it the right way in your business..
Let me know which of the tips have you tried so far, or if you have some others feel free to share.
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This post got you inspired? Here are some more marketing related articles to help you grow your business:
- Digital marketing guide
- How this one strategy can help you boost your business
- What is integrated marketing communication?
Leave a comment if you have a topic in mind that you’d want me to cover!