The Importance of Building Relationships: Why Dialogue with Customers Is Important

GL customer dialogueMost companies are looking only to advertise new and better products when they send out information or emails to their customers.

But, the beauty of email and social media is that it allows for almost instantaneous communication between people all over the world.

For a large company, dialoguing with customers has never been easier, and it’s time to embrace this ability and make the most of it.

Customers like to feel noticed, and big companies are traditionally not well equipped to meet this particular need.

There have always been simply too many customers and not enough staff to listen to and hear every complaint or critique. That is, until the advent of the internet. Email and social media are fantastic tools for large companies to build up the type of customer relationships previously reserved for small, homegrown businesses.

Try one or all of these tips for reaching out and building up your customer relationships.

1. Listen to what they have to say.

Listening to your customers and striking up a dialogue with them is one of the most important factors in showing your clients that they are being heard, and that their advice or criticism is being heeded. This is different from merely giving customers a forum on which they can post their frustrations; it requires making changes to your policies, products, or services.

You will not be able to act on every criticism, and it’s important that customers understand that. You must cater to the majority, while still trying to satisfy the minority as much as possible. If a change cannot be made, make an effort to explain why. People like to have someone listen to them, and in some cases that may be all that is necessary to appease a frustrated customer.

2. Customize email content.

Alter a customer’s email content based on what they are interested in, or what they have purchased previously. A customer’s search history or purchase history can be very helpful in predicting future interests. Customizing your emails to suit those customer’s interests is a great way of keeping customers happy and letting them know you are invested in their satisfaction.

Reach out to customers who have been inactive for long periods of time. Remind customers of discounts, sales, and new products, and direct customers to products that they might like based on their previous purchases. Let customers know that you haven’t forgotten about them, even when they appear to have forgotten about you.

3. Branch out beyond email in your efforts to engage with customers.

One of the most successful marketing campaigns in recent history was Old Spice’s  “Man Your Man Can Smell Like”, featuring an actor who responded to customer’s comments and questions with personalized humorous videos.

Over the course of two days, the Old Spice Marketing team filmed 186 videos of actor Isaiah Mustafa responding to comments pulled from Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and other social media sites. This Old Spice campaign produced 1.4 billion impressions for the brand over 6 months.

Connecting with customers in a humorous and creative way is something that any company can do. The important thing is to engage customers in a dialogue.

 

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