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Thursday, October 23, 2014

6 Tips for Building Lasting Client Relationships

 Do your favorite brands interact with you on social media? Do they show their appreciation of your patronage? Do they give you the "wow" factor at each point of service?

If they want to build lasting relationships with you, then they should be doing these things and more. And if you aren’t providing such things in an effort to build meaningful relationships with your clients, then it’s time to make immediate changes. Use the following tips to help you provide amazing service so that you can wrap the story and reputation of your brand around each client and prospect.

  • Celebrate milestones with clients. This sounds simple, huh? But often we find ourselves too busy to remember birthdays, anniversaries or other important milestones our clients celebrate. Make time to send a card or to send a VSnap video via social media or email for such dates. (VSnap allows you to record 60 second personalized videos, a technique that can help you establish a connection and create trust.) 
  • Remember that not every call should be a sales call.  If a client thinks you only call to sell her something new, you won’t be able to establish a meaningful relationship.  Find other opportunities to call clients and provide value to your service. Invite them to lunch to say thank you for their business, send them links to articles relevant to their businesses or call them to discuss best practices for a product or service you provide. Try to have multiple client touches throughout the year. 

  • Don’t hinge your entire relationship on digital communication.  It’s very easy to rely on e-mail as the primary relationship tool, but remember that clients need to hear your voice and see your face, both of which add a personal touch and go a long way toward deepening client relationships.
  • Exceed your clients’ expectations with the “wow” factor. One of the best ways to develop a meaningful relationship with your clients is to give them 1) exceptional service and 2) exceptional results. Don’t oversell yourself and don’t promise more than you can deliver, but set expectations that provide you with opportunities to excite your clients. Think about the last time a brand left you saying “wow.” Did a representative call you by your first name? Did he tweet about your business from his company’s profile? Did she deliver a product or document to you because you couldn’t come into the office? Did he send you a goody basket with a handwritten note? Remember how you’ve been dazzled by exceptional service and recreate such moments for your clients.
  • Inspire your team with best practices. So now that you’ve recalled how you were dazzled, inspire your team to do the same by discussing best practices. One of the most powerful ways to continue with providing the “wow” factor is to share ideas on how to do so with your employees and/or colleagues. Bring in breakfast one morning and sit down with your team to listen to their ideas and to pass on yours as well. Talking about these ideas can increase the chances that providing “wow” factors become a standard for your brand.
  • Find common ground. Do you and a client both love sports? Do you both have aging parents? Do you both enjoy the same activities outside of the office? Talk with them about such common ground issues; having something to talk about other than the business you are collaborating on makes working together on both sides much more gratifying.

By: Susan Gail Taylor, Social Media Manager and Copywriter at RME360