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Building Online Relationships for More Profit
Richard & Leigh Beaty
Make This Year Great Newsletter
Building Online Relationships for More Profit...
We are constantly reminded that today's customer is no
Too much brand switching, they whine.
Too much buying according to the lowest price,
But the truth is that the basic tenets of a successful
buyer-seller relationship haven't changed . . . we have.
Fundamentally, the customer wants to remain loyal and
research consistently verifies this assertion.
In a recent Network of City Business Journals survey,
89 percent of the respondents agreed with the statement,
"Once I find a product that I like, I stick with it."
Only 22 percent were influenced by what's hot and
So . . . what can you do to lock in customer loyalty?
Featured Action Tip: 5 Tips for Earning Customer Loyalty
1. You have to believe!
Client service is not just a mission statement, it's a
philosophy to be lived.
What makes this statement more than a cliche' in your
company's case will be the hands-on behavior that "puts
money where the mouth is."
Take the subject of integrity, for example. Companies
that are successful in this area take an obsessive,
almost neurotic approach to any potential conflict of
interest. There can never appear to be a conflict
of interest. And never try to work "both sides of the
2. Watch your appearance.
A somewhat old-fashioned, yet reassuring attitude also
prevails on the subject of appearances. Your staff
dress should try to match that of the client.
If in doubt, the default mode is always business attire.
It's a respectful attitude no longer evident in the
behavior and practices of many of today's leading
professional services firms.
3. Treat them the same as ...
It always comes back to mutual dignity and respect.
Customers expect nothing more than common courtesy
in your transactions. This demands viewing the
experience through their eyes.
As simple as this admonition may seem, it is now more
the exception than the rule. Employees no longer have
the time, motivation or training to practice the
time-old art of forging empathy with the customer.
In truth, customer empathy seems well on its way to
extinction, in our relationships, politics and business
transactions. It shouldn't and it doesn't have to be.
The same should hold true on the internal front.
Addressing the issue of "internal customer" loyalty may
require doing a lot of listening . . . visiting your
employees . . . encouraging them to contact you or your
staff with questions or concerns.
4. The customer is always right
These words seem have been spoken by managers for many,
many years, and they are just as relevant today.
Alex Mandossian, a highly successful business and
marketing consultant, stresses the importance of
"exceed your customer's needs and expectations". If you
go that extra mile, customers will reward you with their
loyalty because of that.
5. It's all about relationship.
Customers want to feel loved. And in most environments,
the front-line worker defines the relationship.
In 2000, the late Mary Kay Ash, founder of Mary Kay
Cosmetics, was named "the most influential woman in
business during the 20th century". In an interview with
Lifetime Television she revealed one of the secrets to
her success. "Our front-line people are the company.
We empower them to make decisions, including giving
refunds. It's nothing more than common sense. If
customer loyalty develops from a rewarding and satisfying
"touch" between buyer and seller, better make sure that
the company touch person has been properly motivated,
trained and incentivized".
2001 global wholesale sales for Mary Kay Cosmetics
topped the $1.4 billion mark. Retailers please take note.
When it's all said and done . . .
loyalty's just another word for nothing left to prove.