Techniques to Maintain Relationships with Customers
Maintaining relationship with customers is a necessary component that can help the organizations in setting apart from the competitors. There are some common techniques that are applied in every industry to maintain relationship with customers. Honesty, transparency, communication and customer-centric approach help in maintaining a healthy relationship. These techniques are applied both by the small-scale and large-scale industries. In case of a healthcare institution, there are two main techniques through which quality relationships can be built with the customers (Mende, Bolton and Bitner 2013). Firstly, the physicians or nurses shall build emotional attachment with the patients. The quality of interaction can be improved and this strategy helps in building loyalty of the customers. Behavioural responses can be generated from the word of mouth endorsements. Loyalty grows when the patients are provided with personalized attention. In case of insurance companies, the agents need to be in touch with the customers always. The insurance agent ensures to keep connected with the customers by giving suggestions and asking questions. The documents must be kept in handy where birthday and anniversary notes can be sent. Prompt responses must be sent to the customers as it would help in customer relationship management. In case of fashion industry, it is necessary to understand the needs of clients of varied backgrounds. In case of international clients, the discussions can be made through video-conferencing throughout the project. It is necessary to respond to the changing fashion trends (Medler-Liraz 2016).
Elements of Marketing Activities and Change in Techniques
Marketing mix is a concept that has four main elements- product, price, place and promotion. Customer is the focal point of any marketing activity. The marketing mix activities follow a systematic process that allows in relationship building. Firstly, the companies need to define the unique selling proposition. It is necessary to understand the consumer and the value of product. The competition needs to be understood so that a realistic price can be set. Multiple channels must be used that help in targeting a wider customer base. The promotion strategy is established ensuring the ones which would provide maximum appeal to the intended customers. Therefore, it is seen that the marketing mix elements are deployed in relationship building activities as consumers are the focal point (Kotler and Armstrong 2014).
With the advancement in technology, digital and social media has changed the manner in which organizations interact with the customers. Digital media is an effective way to strengthen relationships with the customers. The different social networks have different focuses thereby attracting a wide range of people and their lifestyle choices. The social media channels must be maximized as it gives a platform in directly interacting with the customers. The digital media such as emails can help in solving customized queries of the customers. In the digitalization era, the businesses must be adaptive to the changing landscape. These methods lead to extreme brand loyalty, repurchase intentions and immeasurable value for the company (Tsimonis and Dimitriadis 2014).
Advantages of Relationship Building
The relationship building activities help in providing consistent customer experience. The organizations share work together to ensure that the customer needs are specifically addressed. It is important especially at the times when certain challenges exist to improve customer satisfaction. The goal of customer relationship marketing can help in developing loyalty between a company and targeted customer base. Customer relationship marketing helps in identifying customers which are of greater value to the company (Samaha, Beck and Palmatier 2014). The customer relationship marketing helps in pinpointing the customers who are too expensive to maintain. Direct marketing is more expensive as there is high level of personalization. Not only expensive, but it is also a time-consuming process. The relationship building helps in keeping a track of the needs of customers. Relevant communication and motivation offers the customers with the appropriate offerings. With the increasing customer base, the business can be expanded. The loyal customers shall be willing to try new products as they would have increased faith. The loyal customers shall be more likely to provide feedback which would enable the companies to improve product and services. It takes a lot of time and effort to build relationships with customers. It is important to build relationships with the customers as it helps in increasing sales, dominance and market share (Egan and Harker 2013). Relationship marketing skills can help in creating business opportunities as a personal connection experience leaves a long-lasting impression. Businesses have to change their focus and concentrate on building relationships (Samaha, Beck and Palmatier 2014).
Measuring the Success of Customer Relationship-building Activities
It is not only important to implement relationship building strategies, but it is also important to measure the success of customer relationship building activities. The sales metrics need to be measured if the number of new customers has increased. The companies need to measure the number of retained customers. The number of campaign responses and purchases can be measured. The input metrics such as thoroughness, accuracy and quality must be measured. The behaviour or activity needs to be evaluated using different metrics. The business goals must be quantified in the manner how customer relationship marketing shall increase revenues or decrease cost (Williams et al. 2015). The strategies and tactics that would enable achieving goals shall be formulated. The response to the marketing campaign must be measured so that the return or response rate can be measured. A customer relationship management must also help in measuring the productivity that would help the labours work faster and smarter. The measurement of effectiveness shall provide the business with a better service. Companies can measure the attitudes of customers that would enable in increasing profitability. The customer relationships shall be directly by conducting personal interviews with the purchase decision-makers and influencers in businesses and public-sector organizations. The attributes with innovation, planning and collaboration must be measured. The importance of customers must be assessed by reviewing the profitability. A customer-centric company wanting to hear the voice of each customer must first develop a frame of reference to ensure that their listening can indeed lead to deeper relationships (Kang 2016).
Kang, D., 2016. Turning inside out: perceived internal branding in customer-firm relationship building. Journal of Services Marketing, 30(4), pp.462-475.
Williams, P., Ashill, N., Naumann, E. and Jackson, E., 2015. Relationship quality and satisfaction: Customer-perceived success factors for on-time projects. International Journal of Project Management, 33(8), pp.1836-1850.
Medler-Liraz, H., 2016. The role of service relationships in employees’ and customers’ emotional behavior, and customer-related outcomes. Journal of Services Marketing, 30(4), pp.437-448.
Mende, M., Bolton, R. and Bitner, M., 2013. Decoding Customer–Firm Relationships: How Attachment Styles Help Explain Customers' Preferences for Closeness, Repurchase Intentions, and Changes in Relationship Breadth. Journal of Marketing Research, 50(1), pp.125-142.
Kotler, P. and Armstrong, G., 2014. Principles of marketing. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson Prentice Hall.
Tsimonis, G. and Dimitriadis, S., 2014. Brand strategies in social media. Marketing Intelligence & Planning, 32(3), pp.328-344.