Managing a business means you are probably most concerned about staying profitable and paying your bills and your employees. But when you focus too much on how much money a customer brings in, you forget to cultivate and nourish your relationship. Keeping a long-term customer is much easier than seeking out new ones, and usually more rewarding in terms of money and the enjoyment of the relationship itself.
Building a connection with your customers means listening to them, providing counsel on issues you are an expert on, and establishing trust. Without trust, your relationship will fail, and your customers will turn to other brands to fulfill their needs.
To fully understand your customers’ needs, take a walk in their shoes and try to see what values are most important to them. Listen without interrupting when they are speaking. Pay attention to what feedback they provide via face-to-face interactions, surveys, reviews, emails, and comments. Take note of what your business is excelling at and what it could improve based on your customers’ responses.
As a business, you want to be considered knowledgeable, successful, and a leader in your field. The best way to do this is to spread your knowledge via digital platforms such as email, social media, and your website. Answer questions, and give helpful advice. Promptly responding to inquiries and comments will make you appear responsive and cooperative.
It takes time to build trust, but one of the best ways to accomplish this is maintaining complete transparency about who you are as a business, what kind of service you provide, and owning up to mistakes when you make them. Be true to your word and follow through with your actions.
Go the extra mile when you can and offer your customers additional perks other than the ones outlined. For example, you could give an extra discount to a loyal customer or ask for feedback on how you could make their experience better.
As you can see, business relationships are not just about making a sale. They are about building a solid connection that feels natural and beneficial to both parties. After all, you are in business to fulfill your customers’ needs. Hone in on these needs and try to go above and beyond in attaining them, and you’ll be on your way to delivering a great customer experience.