Existing customers are always your best shot at another sale, and all companies need to work hard at identifying customer relationship management techniques that will work. After all, a happy customer is a profitable customer.
Here are 5 Customer Relationship Management Techniques that Work
1. Establish Different Techniques for Different Customers
While standard customer relationship management strategies may work for Fortune 500 companies who target a large number of consumers, many of you here have small businesses that work with other CEO’s, business owners, and executives. Customer relationship in this sense, takes on a completely different meaning then it would for consumer customers.
Your greatest chance at finding customer relationship management techniques that work for you, is by segmenting your customers by their value. Establish a different technique for each value, your goal should always be to lower relationship management costs for lower value customers:
2. Customer Relationship Management for High Value Customers
The higher value of your customers, the more they expect personal attention. As a result, they have a higher cost of customer relationship management. They expect your business to understand them, their mindset, even down to their children’s names (this is especially true for C-level executive customers). The best technique to manage this type of customer relationship, is to understand how your customer “likes things done”, and utilize CRM technology to track this for your customer relationship management department so this customer never looses their relationship with your company. These customers you always focus on keeping.
3. Embrace Social Customer Relationship Management Technology for Lower Value Customers
A lot of companies are moving toward social customer relationship management techniques delivered via a social platform. Not only is it more cost effective for the company, but also allows a customer relationship to be managed on the customer’s terms. Another added benefit of this technique, is social CRM platforms allows for customers to help solve one another’s problems. For your lower value customers, this customer relationship management technique is perfect.
4. The Customer Is Always Right
This is an old customer relationship management technique, but it never fails. When a customer walks away from your business feeling like they weren’t heard, or were treated like they weren’t right, that customer probably won’t come back. You have ruined your customer’s relationship with you due to poor management.
Adopt the “customer is always right” philosophy into your business. Even if you loose a profit by following this rule of thumb, it will always cost you more money in the end to acquire a new customer then it will to just let that customer be right for the day. Most likely customers won’t abuse this, however you can try to limit a number of occurrences for those who do.
5. Throw away Customer Service Scripts
If you offer live customer service representatives instead of an automated system, what is the point if you’re still having them read from scripts? Customers (especially your well established customer relationships) want to talk with someone to be heard. I’ve seen teaching employees to problem solve customer service issues be up to 10x more effective in preserving customer relationships.