This is a great month to think about your relationships with your customers and what it is you could be doing to show your customers some LOVE.

I have spoken before about the importance of customer relationships and how having great relationships is the key ingredient to a successful business. A key factor to a great customer relationship is often the service rather than the price or product.

A satisfied customer will shop anywhere, but a loyal customer won’t go anywhere else and will encourage others to buy from you too.

So would you rather have 100 satisfied customers or 100 loyal customers?

Have a think about businesses or shops that you use. Think of ones that you are satisfied with and then think of those that you are loyal to…. what is it that makes the difference, why do you back to them time after time?

I used to work with someone who always described the difference as the ‘Bananarama Syndrome’ (those of you of a certain age will get this, think 80’s pop band!) but it basically means – ‘It ain’t what you do – it’s the way that you do it’. And that is absolutely true.

Customers contact you because they want help, and if you can solve their problems and gain their trust, through being helpful, knowledgeable, polite and friendly, then the price doesn’t become their main issue, they just want help.

When you finish speaking with a customer or complete the transaction, that’s when they start talking…. So it’s up to you to ensure that it’s all positive.

Do you know what people are saying about you or your business? Word of mouth advertising is worth 50 times more than normal marketing. It is up to you to create a memorable customer service.
You need think about what you can do to create WOW’s for your customers at each part of your customers journey with you.

By this I mean, do you ever send customers a card to thank them for their business, or flowers or a box of chocolates if it’s a customer who might spend a lot with you?

Do you offer promotions or special offers, do you create discount packages for loyal customers? What about reward schemes – loyalty vouchers? Think again about where you shop, what loyalty cards do you have in your purse or wallet? How can you create something similar in your business?

Sometimes it can just be the little things that make up the WOWs.

I know someone who once went to their hairdressers and on leaving noticed that it had started to rain. Now we all know how much it costs us ladies to have our hair done, so the last thing we want is to walk straight out into the rain and look like a drowned rat before leaving the car park! Any way one of their members of staff came straight over with a brolly and escorted her to the car – this made a huge impact, and not only did it WOW the customer but she also told everyone else what great customer service this was.

Have a think, how much do you care about your customers? The more you genuinely care about them and not just their wallet, then the more likely that that person will care about you and what you do and the more loyal they will become and they’ll tell others!

All of us have to work for our customers these days and by going that bit further for our customers and showing them some LOVE, this is what helps you to stand out from the crowd and is what might help them to return to you rather than a competitor.

The good news is that getting customers to LOVE you doesn’t have to cost much time or money – it’s more about the way that you think, so try to take a little time out this month and have a think about ways you can create customer loyalty in your business …

 

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