03 May / Relationship Building In A Digital World: It’s the Impression That Really Matters
So often businesses are pressured to execute marketing strategies that push the numbers, the impressions, and the quick ROI. Before you know it, customers are dollar signs and relationship building is based on an automated funnel. This can lead to some tricky territory when it comes to developing profitable marketing strategies and building genuine and ongoing relationships with customers. As with many things in life and business, balance is vital.
While it’s true that automation and digital marketing strategies can yield tremendous benefits in this day and age, beyond each campaign, impression and funnel is a human being, and that’s what must be kept in sight. It’s essential that along with the numbers based strategies, your business is also placing a heavy emphasis on relationship building, or relationship marketing. This form of marketing focuses on the connection to the consumers, putting loyalty at the forefront.
According to a study by Nielsen, 83% of consumers trust recommendations from family and friends over ANY other form of advertising. This is a clear sign that people crave authentic connections to other humans, not automated responses and lack-luster “customer service.”
Does it feel like your company’s marketing strategies have taken a hard turn towards the analytics and left out the human factor? Here are some simple, yet powerful tips that will help to cultivate those long-term relationships with customers and create a loyal following:
Consider sending a personalized thank you to your customers
In this fast-paced digital age, nothing creates a pause quite like a personalized note from a company. We even challenge you to send that note via good ol’ fashioned snail mail. After all, we’re trying to create a real, tangible connection here.
Write copy as if you’re speaking to one person specifically
You’d be surprised how many emails and marketing materials are written for the masses, thus leaving a generic vibe that lacks that personal touch. Instead, try writing copy for your next marketing campaign as if you’re speaking to one person in a face-to-face conversation. This will help the receiver of your message feel like you’re truly speaking to them, not just another subscriber.
Save stand-out information from your customers…and then use it
Celebrate an anniversary or send a birthday card from your company. Tracking customer data with these milestone dates adds to the personal experience that they will have with your company. This is a perfect example of how you can be a powerful marketer with top notch customer service. While we tend to think of customer data collection as an analytical tool, why not use it as an authentic relationship building tool as well?
Need more inspiration? Here are some well-known brands that are doing a great job keeping the human factor intact throughout the entire marketing and advertising process:
The Ritz Carlton – This well-known hotel chain focuses on creating extremely personalized experiences for every guest. Director of Operations, Ricard Casimiro is more concerned with their employees connecting with guests and using their internal radar to notice how guests are feeling, rather than memorizing a script for customer service.
The Dollar Shave Club – They use an in-house CRM, detailed customer information and analytics to really understand each customer’s unique needs. But what makes them exceptional at relationship building is their philosophy, “We don’t respond to situations; we respond to people”. They’ve clearly got their priorities in line, even though they heavily rely on the numbers and data from millions of people.
Trader Joe’s – You walk into a store where employees wear Hawaiian shirts, offer free samples and carry the most friendly conversations. It’s hard to tell they are doing any marketing at all, but their strategy is focused so much on value to customers that we as the customers feel like they are 100% there to take care of us.
Have these stories inspired you to take a closer look at your marketing strategies? We’d love to hear from you! Let us know how your company plans to put an emphasis on relationship building this year.