There are many new entrepreneurs who focus on getting new customers, increasing sales and revenue. Some disregard the long term benefits of maintaining a great relationship with the current clientele and customer base.
Sure, when you’re just starting out, focusing on getting new clients or customers should be a priority. But once the clients are in, it is equally important to maintain a good, healthy relationship with them.
One of the most important benefits of building a steady relationship with your customers is that stability that comes along with it. If you build a good rapport with customers there’s a chance that they might stick around for many years. Loyal customers are the backbone of the more successful companies and it ensures that you have revenue even if there’s a slump in the number of potential customers taking interest in your product.
Word of mouth still has power, even in this day and age of social networking and mobile marketing. What you must ensure is that word is good. People have surprisingly large connections and if they’re impressed with your service, they’re likely to recommend you to their friends, colleagues and family. There’s a chance that you might expand your customer base through your already loyal customers. This only adds to the revenue earned and it can also lead to more steady income.
Maintaining a good reputation is hard these days. It would take just one disgruntled customer to post a bad review online to deter several potential customers. However, if you maintain a great relationship with an existing clientele who are pleased with your product or your service, they might just be enough to counteract the negative publicity you might get.
Potential customers are more likely to trust the review of a long-time customer than someone else. Moreover, those people who have seen quality service or products from you consistently are unlikely to be moved by bad reviews. Their personal experience would tell them otherwise.
How to maintain good customer relationships?
The best way to hang onto customers for several years is to keep them engaged. There are several methods that marketers employ to keep the communication going between a business and its customers.
- You can offer them special discounts. Most customers would be pleased to have special discounts on your products or services, especially when you emphasize that it is a show of appreciation on your part for the long term association.
- You can tailor certain services especially for long-term clients. You can even create certain programmes that would capture or renew their interest in your products and services.
- Gift a privilege club offering exclusive access to customers with more than a fixed number of years of active relationship.
- Remember birthdays and anniversaries and offer them special discounts or services on those dates.
Ensuring that you have healthy customer relationships is the best way to gain long term benefits. The initial loss of revenue would be marginal in comparison.