Creating Customer Loyalty: a Six-Step Model
Most business people think that just because a client likes them and is satisfied with their services, they must be doing a good job in building relationships. Actually, nothing could be further from the truth. The fact is there is a huge difference between having clients like you, and like you enough to put their reputation on the line by referring their friends and associates to you. This article introduces 6 steps that you can use to create customer loyalty and generate a stream of customer referrals.
You most likely know a number of real estate agents, all who are very good at what they do. Which one will you tell a friend about? I bet it’s the one that you know is competent AND who has gone the extra mile to develop a strong relationship with you; the one who has never missed your birthday; who you’ve met for coffee a few times; who sent you a copy of the article about your favorite hobby; whose actions show they like and respect you — not as a potential sale, but as a person. In other words, a person who is, knowingly or unknowingly, practicing the art of building a relationship.
What follows is an example of a Client Relationship Building Plan for new clients. The goal is to take a client from just liking you and your services to being a loyal advocate who enthusiastically raves about you and your services. The actual tools, strategies and techniques used in each step are determined by the specific needs of your business or profession.
- Provide exceptional value. It starts with a commitment to serving your client — before, during and after each sale. It’s about intentionally building trust. To build trust, you need to demonstrate character and competence.
- Build strong relationships. To do this you must have a system in place for continuously recognizing and appreciating the contribution your clients make to your success. Not only do you need to keep your name in front of your clients, you must show them by your actions that they are more than just a number on your profit and loss statement. This is the focal point of your Client Relationship Building Plan. Your goal is to acknowledge, appreciate and educate your new client’s by connecting with them at least 6 to 8 times during the first 60 days.
- Educate new clients. Introduce them to the full spectrum of products and services that you provide and how they can benefit them, their friends and associates. You must keep the value that you bring into their lives constantly in front of them. This provides additional contact points and further shows that you care. You must also educate your clients to the fact that you are looking forward to helping their friends and associates. The education process has two parts: 1) showing that you’re there to help both as a service provider and as a friend, and 2) that you work by referral and will give their friends and associates the same high level of service that they have come to expect.
- Receive referrals. If you’ve done your job in educating your clients, you should be getting referrals from your new client. It goes without saying that every referral must receive excellent service.
- Acknowledge referrals immediately. We all want to be acknowledged for our efforts. Why would anyone send you another referral if they feel you don’t appreciate their efforts?
- Repeat the cycle. Turn your new referral client into a loyal advocate. Add them to your Client Relationship Marketing System and repeat the cycle: provide exceptional value, build strong relationships, educate new clients, receive referrals, acknowledge referrals immediately, and repeat the cycle.
The above approach looks like a lot of work and it is, but it’s much easier, more rewarding and less expensive than most other methods of attracting new clients. Plus, it is a great way to do business!
I am a firm believer in the Law of Attraction; that what we send out is what we get back. Send out thoughts of abundance and joy and attract abundant and joyful people. When the above six steps are implemented with the right attitude, you harness the full power of the Law of Attraction. And that’s when miracles happen, both personally and professionally.
I hope you found this article to be informative and helpful, if so please share it on your social networks and add your comments and suggestions below.
To your Continued Success,