It doesn’t matter whether we are in a recession or prosperity, staying in touch with clients is imperative. Staying in contact not only shows that we care about our clients’ needs and wants, it also shows that they can trust us to be there for them at any given time.
The more support we provide and the happier our clients are, the more they will come back and purchase from us. The more they purchase from us, the higher our bottom line gets.
Relationship marketing is vital to the strategic marketing plan because it involves long term strategies to developing lasting relationships with clients. Experts have said that existing clients are five to seven times more likely to buy from us than new clients are.
Just think about your line of business. Let’s say you sell skincare products and have an existing market of women between the ages of 25 and 60, but you want to segment a group of women within your already existing market. You want to target women between the ages of 40 to 60 for the launch of new anti-aging skincare products. Relationship marketing provides that opportunity.
Since you already have existing relationships with that group of women, you should be able target those between the ages of 40 and 60 and get them to purchase the new anti-aging cream since they are already familiar with your products.
If you wanted to segment an entirely new market, you would have to allocate a significant amount of money to attract them. Why try to sell a new market when you already have an existing one that wants what you are offering?
Keep these things in mind when developing a relationship marketing plan:
- Focus on the customer. Ask a lot of questions to find out exactly what they want. Customers will more readily buy something they want over something they need
- Keep in touch regularly; it can be weekly or monthly. Publish a newsletter on free tips, advice, articles, or reports
- Under promise and over deliver results to exceed client expectations
- Don’t create products or services that you think your clients want. Research!
- Superior customer service is the fundamental element in client retention. Today’s consumers expect us to resolve whatever problems they have or whatever support they need. If we don’t, we may lose them to competition
- Show appreciation and thank clients for their business. Call them on the telephone, send a thank you card, or offer them something special
- Provide quality products and/or services. Remember, lowest prices don’t always win