3 Ways to Build Customer Relationships

Alice Smith owns Hair Products Unlimited, an online retailer. She has lost customers to competitors and is struggling to solve this problem. Alice realized that;

  • She had no customer nurturing process.
  • She only communicated to customers when they purchased.

She knew her challenge was to build relationships with customers who she never met in person. She asked, “What can I do to build customer loyalty?”

Alice knew that building customer relationships leads to long-term profitability. “Build customer loyalty and you become less likely to be known as a commodity,” she said.

Engaging Customers is Important

Like prospects, it is important to reach out to current customers. Customers want to be paid attention to and to feel special. The form of that contact depends upon customer preferences. Ask your customers what they want. They will appreciate being asked.

How Will I Survive?

Alice was worried. Several mature customers stopped buying from her. “How will I survive,” she asked. “I need to reach my customers but don’t know how,”. Competition in this industry is fierce, and Alice knew there was no such thing as customer loyalty.

What Do You Know About Your Customers?

What is your 360 view of your customers? For Alice, there was a lot of sales data that she had yet to analyze. She started looking at her sales and immediately detected several trends:

  • Most customers renewed purchases every 8 weeks.
  • Customers who bought only twice did not become long term customers.
  • Promotions increased sales.

Based on her analysis, Alice plotted a new course

Sales and Reorders

The key to Alice’s business is reorders. Alice knew that once a customer reordered more than 2 times, the customer was likely to buy on a regular basis. Alice formalized her sales process as follows:

  • Listed everything she knew about her customer buying patterns, preferences, habits, and interests.
  • Listed customers that purchased more than 1 product from her.
  • Identified customers by frequency of purchase.
  • Prepared a questionnaire to ask future customers about their needs, wants and desire.

Alice had a clearer understanding of her customer base.

2 Prong Approach

Alice sought the advice of her business coach who advised 2 concurrent tracks:

  • Integrate her E-Commerce website with her CRM.
  • Design customer outreach using reorder triggers.

The key is to tailor your interactions and offerings to meet customer needs and expectations.

Alice developed several strategies to increase her customer interactions:

  • Offer promotions for the 3rd and 4th reorders and for the purchase of companion products.
  • Send outreach to customers based on reorder frequency.
  • Message customers based on social media preferences.
  • Ask new customers to answer a few questions after purchasing.

“How can I reach all these people all the time?” Alice asked.

The Power of CRM Automation

Alice knew the answer rested with her CRM which had the tools to segment her customers by reorder frequency and send automated promo offers based on products purchased and the number and frequency of reorders. 

Alice now calls her best customers and is building customer loyalty. 

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