A relationship is the main ingredient to whatever business you wish to embark on. A good relationship amazingly soars your revenue while a bad one sends your business down the drain.
The growth and sustenance of any business revolve around creating, maintaining, and enhancing strong, value-laden relationships with customers and other stakeholders. Relationship marketing is therefore based on the premise that important accounts need focused and continuous attention.
Since the purpose of marketing is to establish, maintain, enhance, and commercialize customer relationships (often, but not necessarily always, long-term relationships) so that the objectives of the parties involved are met, relationship can then be said to be the essence of marketing the is based on mutual exchange and fulfillment of promises.
The overriding interest in account-based marketing (ABM) is undoubtedly about revenue. As a result of the decline in broadcast marketing and the failure of inbound to fill the gap, more and more B2B marketers are shifting to targeted and personalized approaches to drive pipeline and revenue.
In order to build a comprehensive and result oriented personalized approach that will target real customers, it’s absolutely necessary that you get to know them very well. This you can only achieve by building solid relationships with them.
A research, conducted by ITSMA in partnership with the ABM Leadership Alliance, shows that even larger percentages of ABM-ers are seeing improvements in Reputation and Relationships, the other two “R’s” of strategic marketing: 84% report improvements in reputation and 74% are seeing improvement in relationships.
The reason you need to join these ABM-ers is that it will help you not only get new customers but keep them once you have them. Why? Because you’re building a better experience for them as they engage with your business.
5 Benefits of a successful relationship marketing strategy
- Reacting to customers’ needs and concerns
Have you ever wondered why even if your product is the best among the brands, you still need to do a marketing campaign to get it into the mainstream?
Customers want to feel special and important because they don’t often get to feel that way in other areas of life. This is key to remember because customers rarely purchase products or services solely based on the products intended result.
Deep down, they are also asking themselves, “What will this do for me, or provide for me?”
The answer isn’t just the product results. The answer includes all of the feelings and desires that come with that product and the results.
By building your relationship marketing skills, you fulfill those additional needs. You provide more than just a product or service, you provide an experience.
You are responding to concerns instead of reacting to them. Response to a concern means that you find a way to answer the question that empowers your company and the person making the concern.
- Better Feedback
A lot of brands are queuing in, this is no small means due to social media: feedback (thoughts or reactions to a product or service) can make or break a business. Today, you can engage with a brand on social media and, if they care about relationship marketing, they’ll reply.
Customers have the opportunity to been heard and they, in turn, provide valuable feedback for brands in areas that might need to be tweaked. The overall effect is a win-win situation.
- Building trust and loyalty
A brand that wants to be relevant despite the barrage and onslaught from competitors must have loyal customers. The only way to build loyalty is to build trust by constantly relating with your customers.
As a consumer, especially when shopping online, will you buy from a complete stranger? Will you purchase something from a random website you’ve landed on? Will you hire a consultant, coach or assistant that you’ve never heard of, worked with or seen?
If your answer is ‘NO’ expectedly, then that is exactly what you will expect from your consumers. They need to know, like, and trust you.
- Increased customer satisfaction
Another advantage of utilizing customer relationship marketing is that it increases customer satisfaction and communication levels. Once your brand has been able to create strong relationships with customers, you can interact with them more frequently.
You will with this have the opportunity to learn more about your customers with ease via customers’ data platforms. Your organization also saves money by building solid relationships with existing customers rather than spending to attract new customers.
- Ease of introducing changes
Cost of production is dynamic and at certain times you may want to make changes especially as they concern prices of goods and services. Such changes quite often, don’t go well with customers, since they have to cough out more from their budgets.
With loyal customers which you must have built up as a result of good and mutual understanding based on trust, you may not have to lose much sleep over this issue. Relationships you have built with the customers come in handy here.
To competitors, you may have a magic wand.
It’s a certainty that you need more resources to gain a new customer than to retain an old one. The extra budget you need may go into some other vital areas in the organization.
Since all you need to achieve this is by creating solid relationships with your customers, what stops you from grabbing it with both hands?
Photo Credit: Tucson Business Clubs America Flickr via Compfight cc