The best customer relationship marketing systems provide a systematic and gradual way to build the one-on-one customer relationships that increase sales, solidify loyalty and prompt your customers to recommend you to others.
Here are some simple ways you can boost the process of building a business relationship with the people who need your products and services.
- Know your customers: Make all possible efforts to communicate directly with your customers, in all possible channels, to find out what they value, what their needs and wants are, and what they want from you. This communication can take the form of surveys, questionnaires, in-person interviews and after-sale follow-up calls. Recording all of this information in your customer database will give you the edge you need for one-to-one marketing campaigns and ongoing evaluation of your efforts.
- Value customer input: When customers give you feedback, even if it’s something you’d rather not hear, treat that feedback as the high-value information it is. Knowing what your customers like and appreciate about your company is useful, but knowing what they don’t like is crucial to making changes and refinements that will keep customers interested, loyal and ready to buy again.
- Make resources and management support available: Without resources to provide loyalty rewards and incentives and without wholehearted support from top management on down, even the most well-intentioned customer relationship marketing program will be ineffective at best and a total failure at worst. Before starting a program, make sure management is on board and willing to invest in the financial and material resources that will make your program a success.
- Regularly review, evaluate and refine your customer relationship marketing activities: Once a customer relationship marketing program is initiated, it needs to be carefully monitored to ensure it’s working as intended. The program should be reviewed regularly, perhaps quarterly or every six months. Procedures and results should be evaluated on multiple levels, such as cost versus returns, customer retention and loyalty levels, field-level personnel involvement and management concerns. Refinements and adjustments should be made where necessary, based on both customer feedback and the experiences of managers and employees directly involved in customer relationship marketing activities.
Is your customer relationship marketing program as successful as it could be? What could you do to improve your customer relationship-building?
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