For anyone working in a sales environment, your relationship with your customers dictates your success. You can turn a one-time deal into lifelong business by how you acknowledge, understand and treat your customers’ needs. At Cydcor, we put an emphasis on this aspect of the job from the start.
Begin by asking questions. Ask them who they are, what they want and what they expect from your business. Conduct surveys, hold events and meet-and-greets, set up customer profiles to help individualize your sales pitch. Let go of your assumptions and figure out what each individual client wants.
We know that customer loyalty is at an all-time low, especially among younger clients who use social media reviews and recommendations as a means of doing business. Social media sites like Twitter and Facebook are great ways to interact with customers and ask them the questions that will give you a better understanding of what makes them tick. Through social media you can:
- Start a dialogue with clients about your product and their expectations
- Learn about your customers’ interests and buying history
- Give your customers a platform for reviews and comments
- Be active in the community and make a trusted name for yourself
Adding a personal touch to your professional relationship is also key. Gallup’s Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman found four levels of customer expectation that will help build trust between you and your clients:
- Accuracy – Learn exactly what your customer wants and when they want it, and then make sure they get it. If you can’t follow through with this most basic step, you are very likely to lose your customer and even your business.
- Availability – You need to be there for your customer, especially after you’ve taken their money. If there is an issue to fix or a product to be returned, they want to know you will be available to address their concerns.
- Partnership – This goes hand-in-hand with availability, and it’s the level where you really build trust. Are you attuned to your clients’ needs? Are you connecting to each client on an individual basis? Do they feel like you actually care?
- Advice – A study by the MIT Sloan School of Management showed that customers are most loyal to companies who teach them something. Educate your customer about the product you are selling and they are more likely to buy from you again.
It’s easy to get caught up in numbers. But the backbone of your business is the loyal, happy customer, and open lines of communication will work in keeping them coming back for more.
Getting in the mind of your customer isn’t the easiest concept to grasp, but it’s valuable in the long run. Have you found any good strategies to understand your customers better? Share with us on Cydcor’s Twitter and follow us @Cydcor.
We are Cydcor, the recognized leader in outsourced sales services. From our humble beginnings as an independent sales company based in Canada to garnering a reputation as the global leader in outsourced sales, Cydcor has come a long way. We’ve done this by having exceptional sales professionals and providing our clients with proven sales and marketing strategies that get results.