7 Ways to Win Your Customers Love
BY: NELLIE AKALP ON TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 26, 2013
This Valentine’s season is a great time to revisit your business’ relationship with its customers. Are you doing all that you can to convince them to love you?
- Get Personal
Customers don’t form emotional bonds with companies; they connect with people. If you want customers to love your business, you’ll have to show off the people behind it. Make sure you take every advantage to tell your customers more about you and encourage your employees to do the same. Connect on a personal level, not through press releases.
- Reward Your Loyal Customers
Too many businesses focus on attracting new customers. However, studies show that it’s more expensive to acquire a brand new customer than it is to generate business from an existing one. Therefore, it can help your bottom line to focus on rewarding your loyal customers. Send them exclusive perks, such as a discount for future purchases or a free training or consulting session.
- Get to Know Your Customer
Each customer has a unique story and a unique set of challenges to solve. In order to truly meet their needs, you’ll need to understand them first. Take some time to think about what makes your customers tick. What keeps your customers up at night? What would make their day easier? What are their biggest concerns and how can you help? By walking a mile in the shoes of your customer, you’ll gain a better understanding of your customer’s perspective and can form a stronger relationship.
- Exceed Expectations
Many times, surveys ask “Did we meet your expectations?” and companies are satisfied when the answer is yes. However, just meeting expectations isn’t enough. Customers don’t get excited about a business that does ‘just enough’. Rather than aiming to meet expectations, try to exceed them. For example, the online retailer Zappos advertises free ground shipping, but then surprises most customers with a free upgrade to overnight shipping.
- Show Your Gratitude
It’s not just a matter of etiquette: manners really do matter. Customers want to feel like they’re more than just a number. The most beloved companies take every chance they can to show their appreciation. Send a thank you note or email after each sale or project. This simple gesture will take only minutes of your time, but will speak volumes about how your company values its customers.
Your customers won’t love you if you don’t listen to them. Fortunately, there are plenty of opportunities to listen these days, from what customers say to you directly on customer service or sales calls to what they say about you on Twitter, Yelp, or other social networks. While listening is important, it’s even more important to respond quickly to any issues, own up to any shortcomings, and adapt your business in order to better meet your customers’ needs.
- Love Your Customers
Today’s customers are looking for more than just a product or service. They want to engage with a business that cares about them and their community. Sometimes businesses and marketers focus too much on finding ways to get customers to love them and forget what’s most important: you’ve got to love your customers first. I launched my business because I love the concept of small business; I love working with other entrepreneurs and helping them launch their dreams. If you don’t feel a genuine connection to your customers, you may want to rethink why you’re in business in the first place. Be genuine and show customers you care, and you’re more likely to win their hearts and business!