11 ways to develop a stronger customer relationship
Your ability and willingness to understand your customer’s wants and needs is essential if you want to stay in business and continue to build a solid foundation for your brand. But remember that maintaining a reliable reputation in the industry has everything to do with human relations and how you treat the people you interact with on a daily basis.
So the more your business is able to make life easier for its customers and meet their needs, the more likely you are to earn their trust and customer base over the long term, whether it’s a challenge or a victory to win. famous.
Below, Fast Company board members share their most helpful strategies for promoting customer satisfaction and creating a win-win situation.
1. ALWAYS SHOW EMPATHY.
Empathy is the key. The notion of “business-to-business” overlooks the fact that the basis of any business is people. Understanding where customers are in their journey is key to productivity and positivity. Successful relationships are built on understanding, transparency, and a willingness to be vulnerable to influencers and motivators. –David Schwartz, DeVito/Verdi
2. BE PREPARED TO ESTABLISH YOUR CUSTOMERS’ TRUST.
People do business with people, so building trust with customers is essential for continued success. When our customers trust our brand and our team, they are more likely to extend their relationship with our company. If we dare to be open and vulnerable, our customers reciprocate. This allows us to fully understand the wants and needs of our customers. – Andreas Petterrsson, Arcules
3. REGISTER BY ASKING THE RIGHT QUESTIONS.
A magic tool to keep conversations productive in difficult times is to open by asking everyone to first answer the question: “What works with the relationship or situation today?” Starting from this perspective reminds everyone of what is good, what is positive and what is valuable. This shifts the mind from complaining to problem solving, making positive outcomes much more likely. – Christina Robbins, Digitech Systems
4. GIVE CUSTOMERS A WAY TO THINK POSITIVE.
Whenever I engage with my clients, I try to get them to step away from the challenges they face and look back a year or two to see what has changed for them and their business. How much have they changed during this time? What did they learn? When I put them in that mindset, they realize they’ve overcome a lot and have what it takes to move forward. – Tony Martignetti, Inspired Coaching
5. ACCEPT CUSTOMERS, PHYSICALLY AND INTERPERSONALLY.
Make their life easier. One of the best ways to support and connect with customers as a brand is to meet them where they are, physically and interpersonally. Incorporating empathy for the challenges of everyday life into your marketing goes a long way, such as offering an opt-out option for sensitive times like Mother’s Day. – Sara Varni, Mindful
6. STAY AUTHENTIC AND AUTHENTIC.
Be genuine at all times and take a genuine interest in their business, successes and challenges. Ask the question of what you can do to help them meet or exceed their goals. Take the answer to heart, then do these things if you can. – Matt Domo, Fifth Vantage
7. SOLVE PROBLEMS TOGETHER.
As the “Difficult Conversations“ book explains, use a simple sequence to handle a difficult conversation. First, identify a fundamental problem (not the person) and explain how it affects everyone. Then, get on the same side of the fence as your client and agree to tackle this issue together. Finally, as you begin to work together to solve the problem, use the winning moment together to strengthen the relationship. –Andrei Kasyanau, Glorium Technologies
8. CREATE SAFE SPACES TO CONNECT AND SHARE IDEAS.
Meet your customers and clients where they are in their journey. You need to build genuine relationships that aren’t about sales and business. Creating safe spaces to connect and simply share new ideas or new connections is a way to engage customers even when sales or engagement may come months later. They will remember how you treated them and will call on your expertise later. – Leigh Burgess, Bold Industries Group, Inc.
9. BE AN ACTIVE LISTENER.
Listen more than you speak. When you speak, be sincere. To move forward in the conversation, learn to recognize and distance yourself from unconstructive paths of discussion. Instead, lead these discussion paths to areas where positive change can occur. – Jarrod Morgan, Meazure Learning
10. MAKE YOUR INTENTIONS CLEAR.
I start difficult conversations with customers by telling them about my North Star: We want to do the right thing, first and foremost. Once it’s clear that both sides aren’t negotiating to “win” but are looking for the right outcome, defenses fade and great conversations naturally occur. –Ryan Anderson, Filevine
11. PLAN AN IN-PERSON MEETING.
Go out of your way to meet them where they work (so, in person, if possible) and just listen. Ask them how things are going, what they think and where they need help. You’re not meeting to sell or address a current service issue, but to show your customer some empathy and interest in their perspective on their business. – Amy Radin, Pragmatic Innovation Partners LLC