Creating happy, sustainable and robust relationships with your clients is one of the most important elements of a successful business. In the spirit of National Client Care Month, TSG celebrates the importance of nurturing and building those relationships, understanding that the time, energy, and ultimately the cost of getting new business, compared to developing existing relationships, is enormous.
How do we ensure our clients are satisfied, appreciated and heard? It seems simple, but truly embracing customer feedback not only builds the trust needed to sustain valuable client relationships but adds to the experience that any company seeks to deliver. Sometimes, it is the “soft skills” that are most important – check out the four tips below:
1. Be more present than ever
As business gets more complicated by technology, it’s often the simple things that can make customers feel like you care. Give customers your full attention by taking eyes and ears off all the distractions around you when they talk. All too often, employees type emails or answer ringing lines while a customer is with them. There is also an opportunity for business leaders to set an example here, putting aside distractions when they communicate with employees.
2. Extend the offer
Offer to help. While much more business happens online and on the phone these days, it’s easy to help customers interacting digitally, including offering a Zoom chat session.
3. Make it personal
Most front-line employees probably learned a long time ago to address customers by name to make the experience more personal. That still holds true. But adding a memory – perhaps referring to a past experience or personal information the customers shared another time – shows you care about the person, not just the transaction.
Most databases leave room for notes. Encourage employees to make short notes that they and colleagues can use as references to past conversations that can and should be mentioned again. On the flip side, they might want to also take note of things that shouldn’t be discussed with customers.
4. Be positive
It’s nearly impossible to set a caring tone when talking negatively about your job, competitors, customers, the industry, weather or whatever. A negative culture is not a caring one. You can create a positive, caring environment by promoting the good things and asking for solutions to problems – and not complaining about those problems.
By incorporating a robust client care system with regular contact, from the offset, means it’s highly likely you’ll keep that client relationship alive long after the initial project is forgotten. Appreciation and empathy are critical to enable an easily accessible, open, two-way dialogue about your services and find resolutions, keeping you in the forefront of their minds for future projects.