Building relationships and growing take time, right? And if you want relationships to last and flourish, you know that you’ll need to invest some time into nurturing them.
Well, relationship marketing is no different. Showing the value of your products and services to customers and clients doesn’t just happen from a one-hit offer or popular social media post. Your loyal clients love you because you show them how valued they are.
There are hundreds of examples of brands cultivating loyalty with their customers, but the key is to remember that relationship marketing is long-term, like planting some seeds and then watching them grow. How do you do that? We’re going to show you how!
Relationship Marketing as Lead Nurturing
Lead generation and lead nurturing are both important to your business. Lead generation is like planting your seed—lead nurturing is the time to grow them. We love helping small businesses do both successfully. But when it comes to helping your clients and customers understand the value of what you do and offer, it can take time to develop that relationship from your initial introduction, to their first service experience with you.
When you plant seeds, it takes water, sunlight, and perhaps some fertilizer. And time. Yes, time is of the essence.
When you have a lead, you can continue to grow it into a viable client or customer using an email series, blog posts, or offers that aren’t just about making a quick sale, but more about showing your potential clients and customers that you truly care about their needs.
When a client knows you care, you begin to see the fruit of your nurturing. They may ask more questions, share your brand with others, and purchase a product or service. The process begins to look more like a meaningful conversation than just a transaction. And that’s where the good stuff is!
How to Grow Customer Relationships
Your clients and customers want to feel like they have something exclusive in their partnership with you. They want to feel like they’re important and that you’re committed to helping them with whatever they need. But, how do you effectively use relationship marketing when you may not even see people face-to-face? How do you build a connection that provides deeper value and leads to them making a purchase or commitment to your company?
Who doesn’t like to feel appreciated? We all want to feel like we bring something to the table, which is why you can really connect with your clients and customers by showing them you appreciate their service.
Simple things like remembering their name or what products they like can go a long way. It can also be hard to remember that when your business is serving multiple clients at the same time. One way to show appreciation is by using CRM tools. By getting connected with CRM software, you can track all the important details you need to know to build up your relationship marketing prowess, like buyer behavior patterns, names, and customer personas.
You may even consider offering your valued customers a little something extra. Whether it’s a discount, an exclusive product, or an insider look into your business, these little notes of appreciation can really solidify the long-term relationship you want to grow.
Add a Little Emotion
You don’t need to be over-the-top crazy with your emotions to build a great relationship marketing strategy, but it doesn’t hurt to show clients and customers that you are in fact human.
Consider what your clients and customers are feeling when they come to you. Are they nervous, desperate, scared, confused, or excited? Validate these emotions.
It may show up in your social media strategy, email marketing campaigns, or blogs. Whichever platform you use, acknowledging what people are feeling shows that you are human and you relate to them. It takes the conversation and connection beyond the screen and more to the heart. Think of it like a little digital fertilizer.
Say Thank You
One of the simplest tools in great customer service is saying “Thank You.” Of course, when purchases are made online, it’s a little harder to make that grateful connection, but thankfully, there’s plenty of ways to still say those magic words.
A quick and easy way to do that is with a follow-up email after they sign-up for an offer, or after they make a purchase. You may even go further by asking about their experience, showing that you’re open to their opinions and want them to know you care about them.
If you have a small business that allows you to make a phone call or send a card, then pick up the phone or send a note that lets them know you care enough to acknowledge how they’ve supported you. Customers and clients love getting a little personal attention and are far more likely to return to your business if they know you’re grateful for them.
Ask For Feedback
We get it—asking for feedback can be scary. There’s always a chance of getting a less-than-stellar review of your business. But feedback is invaluable to your relationship marketing strategy.
Clients and customers want to a) know that you care enough to hear their opinion, and b) that you’re humble enough to listen. Receiving honest feedback is an opportunity to grow and learn, but also a golden opportunity to give your clients and customers a voice that they may feel uncomfortable using without being asked.
So, don’t be shy. Send an email, ask on your website or social media, but find a way to invite your audience into the process of giving feedback, while you practice gracefully receiving it.
Relationship marketing can sometimes feel like a lot of work, but we’re here to help you and your business grow. Wayward Kind specializes in creating digital marketing strategies that are all about growing your client relationships. Ready to grow? Contact us today!