Competition is fierce in the best of times, and it is more so in tough times.
The world of marketing is full of voices trying to be heard above the others.
It is certainly true that any business must make itself visible (and heard) in order to have a chance to find customers to do business with. Marketing gets you in front of them, and once you’ve sold them, you must keep selling them. As you know (and as I noted in an earlier blog), the cost of acquiring a new customer far exceeds the cost of keeping one. Whether your organization is large or small, your most profitable relationships will be the longest-lived, and the most difficult for your competitors to win away.
If you build it (the relationship), they will come (back).
One great way to do this falls back on the concept that Customer Relations is everybody’s job, and that any employee who “touches” a customer “owns” him or her. If the custodian runs into a customer walking down the wrong hallway, he needs to take them to where they want to go. If the bookkeeper accidentally picks up the wrong line, she must make sure that that customer speaks with to whomever they are trying to reach. She must not just put him back on hold. Your staff ,no matter what their role, should know that it’s best to learn customers’ names, and use them, and, if possible, get to know about them.
Anyone who appreciates Quality will recognize it in your organization. You do it, don’t you? Do you have a favorite restaurant, or automotive repair shop, or accountant? It’s probably because you like them because they pay attention, both to you and to what they do for you. And it would be difficult for their competitors to win your business, wouldn’t it?
While your competitors are spending big money screaming to the masses in an attempt to prove how low their prices are, and how great their service is, you, through your staff are showing your customers how great you are.
You’re not singing louder – you’re singing better.