Because these are the companies that have shown their clients that they truly appreciate them and their business. They have built a solid relationship with them. They have got to know them on a more personal level. Not only do their clients keep buying from them but they give them referrals.
Here are some ways that companies can show their clients appreciation.
• Taking the time to build the relationship.
• Finding out about their needs, their goals, and their vision.
• Treating them more as a business partner.
• Something as simple as sending them a note or card thanking them for their business at some time besides when they have just placed an order.
• Helping them even if it doesn't mean money in your pocket.
• Introducing them to another business partner that might help them with their goal/vision.
Many businesses and sales people who sell large ticket items, i.e. cars, real estate, etc., can benefit from relationship marketing. By building the relationship and keeping in touch with their clients is a great referral source. I refer to these clients as a “Golden Referral Source.”
If the sales person has built a solid relationship with their client, found them the perfect, home, car, etc., AND stays in touch with them over the years ahead, they will receive referrals from that client for years to come. The best example I have is a couple I know who sell real estate. I am not a client of theirs now, but when I do buy or sell, they will be who I call.
Here are some examples of how they stay in touch with their past clients and potential clients:
• They send a beautiful magazine from them each month on home decor.
• They give out a small magnetic yearly calendar with their business card around Thanksgiving,
• They give a baseball schedule in the spring, a football schedule in the fall. The football schedule is for the two major colleges in the area and the pro team.
• They send an email newsletter each month
• They send birthday and wedding anniversary cards.
• And they an anniversary card on the date of the anniversary that their clients closed on their home that they purchased through them.
I've never bought a thing from them, but you better believe when someone asks me for a real estate person, they are the ones I refer, simply because they go beyond the call of duty.
Some companies are cutting their prices to keep their clients in today's economy. If a company has a quality product, outstanding service, is dependable, and has built a solid relationship, then that customer is not going to stray just because they might save a few dollars. They realize that the relationship and service they have received is worth a whole lot more. Not only are they not going to stray they will be a 'Golden Referral Source.'
Here are some inexpensive ways to stay in front of your clients.
• Follow up with a phone call, offer industry information on a periodic basis like an email newsletter.
• Mailing them something personal not bulk or junk mail.
• Personal visit to their place of business and not necessarily to make a sale.
• Be their business partner. Take a personal interest in their success. Zig Ziglar says that if you help enough people to get what they want, you’ll get what you want.
Remember that it is more costly to find a new customer than it is to maintain and keep the ones you currently have. If you maintain 5% of your current clientele you can double your business. Because they will come back to you time and time again and will refer others to you.
Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out. Robert Collier
Annette S. Walden
Marketing Solutions Consultant
"Helping you and your business look good!"
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