It’s no secret that building strong customer relationships is key to a successful business. After all, it’s much easier to sell to someone you already have a relationship with than it is to find new customers. In this blog post, we will discuss 10 ways B2B marketers can build lasting relationships with their clients. Plus how to create a positive customer experience, set client relationship goals, and use B2B content marketing to forge stronger ties with customers.
- Why It’s Important To Build Customer Relationship
- 10 Tried and True Strategies for Building Better Customer Relationships
10 Ways to Build Long Lasting Customer Relationships
Do you want to create customers for life? If so, you need to focus on building long-lasting relationships with them. There are many ways to do this, but we will focus on the most effective ones that yield high returns.
In order to build customer relationships, you first need to understand what your goals are. Every business is different, so make sure your marketing goals reflect your vision and mission and take into account your buyer personas. After goal-setting, it’s time to put together a plan of action. Implementing these best practices will help you create a positive customer experience that they won’t soon forget!
Why It’s Important To Build Customer Relationships
A loyal customer base is the backbone of any strong B2B company. Investing in building customer relationships has an array of long-term benefits, and is one of the best ways to add potential leads and increase your customer retention rate.
When customers don’t feel the love your business will suffer. For example, case studies show 68% of customers leave because they feel unappreciated and 71% of customers will leave if they have a poor experience. Here are the top reasons why it’s critical to build strong customer relationships in B2B marketing:
Build Customer Loyalty
When customers feel appreciated, they are more likely to remain loyal to your brand. In fact, market research by Bain & Company shows a five percent increase in customer retention can lead to an increase in profits between 25 and 95 percent.
Customer loyalty is important because it not only keeps customers coming back but also leads to positive word of mouth, increases in positive customer reviews, and ultimately, drives more sales.
Increase Average Order Value and Lifetime Value of a Customer
When customers feel valued, they are more likely to make larger purchases and continue doing business with you over the long term. This can cut down on time and energy spent on new lead generation and content creation.
Your marketing and sales teams put all their time and resources into turning leads into paying customers. Is there anything more frustrating than a one-time customer??
Building customer relationships is key to reducing churn in any B2B space. When you have strong relationships with your customers, you can generate more referrals. Potential clients are more likely to do business with a company if it’s recommended by a friend.
Create brand advocates
When customers feel valued, they are more likely to give positive feedback and recommend your business to others. Furthermore, happy customers are also more likely to be patient and forgiving when things go wrong.
1. Focus on communication with the customer
The key is to treat clients as a partner. You need to be responsive to their inquiries, whether it’s through email, phone, or social media channels. You should also keep them updated on the latest news about your company with meaningful content. Here are a few examples of what great content looks, sounds, and feels like:
Clients want to partner with a person, not a bot. These are a few great ways to humanize your interactions with different audiences:
- Sending a handwritten thank you card after a purchase
- Following up after an installation to make sure everything is going smoothly
- Responding to customer inquiries and taking the time to address their concerns
Great communication shows that you value their business and want to keep them as satisfied customers. Consider using different formats, or a sending platform like Sendoso to streamline your communication and make a positive impression with customers.
HighRadius is a Houston-based fintech company that needed a better way to communicate and encourage clients to book and keep meetings. By partnering with the Sendoso team, they launched a customer incentive campaign featuring Sendoso Choice which curates bundles of 2-4 eGifts options. Individual consumers who booked and participated in meetings, conference calls, and demos got to choose their favorite from the bundle.
The results? HighRadius was able to take its target customers relationships to the next level:
- build stronger connections with a target audience
- improve meeting retention during extended sales cycles
- create a new pipeline
Does your content strategy need an upgrade? It’s a good idea to self-assess and make sure you are utilizing every tool you’ve got to effectively communicate.
- Do you offer diverse types of content that address pain points?
- Are you leveraging keyword research to curate valuable content and drive better results?
- Do your content marketing efforts focus on a specific purpose and tactic?
- Does your content marketing budget support thought leadership content and social media content sufficiently?
- Is your video content, including youtube videos, updated each year to optimize search results?
2. Treat and respect your client
You want to make your customers feel like VIPs. Be strategic, and you can accomplish this while also meeting your sales goals! Here are some good examples of how Sendoso can help B2B brands and content marketers treat clients and show appreciation with physical impressions:
- Stay top of mind with your B2B Companies, and automatically send them surprise treats from an extensive marketplace of food and wine options. Or try sending a highly personalized gift from Amazon with a handwritten note 60 days before renewal? Timing is everything, and this gesture makes renewing a no-brainer.
- Build customer loyalty and increase retention with thoughtful physical impressions that show customers you respect them and value their business. Staying engaged with B2B buyers is even more important now that most are working remotely and on-site visits aren’t possible.
3. Understand all of your client’s needs
Your client may be telling you what they think their needs are, but it’s up to you to go deeper and uncover the real underlying challenges they face that your product or service can help with. This important part is where building trust comes in – if you show your clients that you really understand their business, they’ll become loyal.
Connect with your customer on a personal level
- Learn their preferred contact channels
- Send personalized emails and top-notch content
- Create meaningful Opt-in forms & Thank You pages
- Give customers choice, allow them to opt in and opt out when they wish
- Use advanced customer engagement tools to address their concerns faster
- Chat with prospects in real time
- Personalize sales follow-ups
4. Ensure you have a great customer experience
Creating an incredible customer experience has three invaluable benefits- customer loyalty, retention, and referrals. To reap the benefits, focus on these actionable steps:
- Provide real-time support: With live chat, you can give support to your consumers right when they need it most. You can collect data and obtain a better understanding of the consumer journey in order to offer proactive assistance.
- Engage with your potential customers: Encourage your support staff to connect with your customers and solicit their honest feedback. Identify core customer needs and make a plan to satisfy those needs. This is an
easy way to improve customer satisfaction and loyalty.
5. Create value for customers
It’s important to give your customers a reason to stick with you. Your product or service must be perceived as worthy of their time and money. The key is to maximize benefits within an acceptable price point. If you can provide customers with value, they’ll be more likely to remain loyal.
There are a few key ways to create value for customers:
- Simplify the use of your product or service: If your solution is complex, find ways to make it easier for customers to understand and use.
- Cultivate Positive Brand Perception: Strengthen your brand awareness and reputation by delivering on promises, being transparent, and resolving customer complaints quickly. Customers are more inclined to buy from companies that share their own moral and fundamental values. Your mission statement and company culture should reflect this.
- Improve Customer Service: Make it easy for customers to get in touch with you when they need assistance and go above and beyond to solve their problems.
- Offer incentives: This could include discounts, coupons, or free shipping.
- B2B content marketing strategy: Target marketing content to solve a problem. Every email should be sent to a list of contacts (personas) that have been segmented based on their interests and needs.
6. Exceed expectations
Go the extra mile to make sure your customers are happy! This is how you can set yourself apart from the competition.
- Make it easy to do business with you: Have a user-friendly website, clear and concise product descriptions, and helpful customer service representatives.
- Be responsive: Respond to customer inquiries in a timely manner – this shows that you care about their business and are invested in building a relationship.
- Follow up: After a customer buys something from you, follow up with them a week later to see how they’re enjoying it.
7. Reward Loyalty
Loyalty should be rewarded! Show your appreciation for customer loyalty with a memorable physical impression through Sendoso’s direct sending platform. This is a great way to show your B2B audience that you value their business and want to keep them as long-term customers.
An excellent example is Sendoso’s direct sending platform, which makes corporate gifting for larger companies a breeze. Select the perfect gift from a carefully curated selection and send it all over the world to your most loyal customers with the click of a button. Sendoso integrates easily with all your existing platforms. The possibilities are limitless!
Direct mail tiers can be leveraged for outreach to all the right people, from first-time buyers to your executive VIPs. Boulevard, a scheduling, point-of-sale, and payments platform recently used this approach to reward their B2B clients with great success.
- customers who registered for a demo were sent a $5-10 coffee eGift to reward attendance
- a gourmet cookie box was sent to established clients was attended an annual meeting or call
- branded high-end gift boxes were sent exclusively to decision-makers and enterprise-level clients
The results? Boulevard successfully created personal connections with all levels of clients, invested in customer relationships, and saw their highest ROI in a single quarter!
8. Show that you care about your customers
One way to show that you care about your customers is to get involved in their community. This could mean sponsoring a local event, donating to a worthy cause, or even just writing a blog post about something that’s important to them. There are tons of other great ways to show industry leaders you care. Now is the right time to show your B2B Companies that you’re after more than just page views and social shares.
9. Ask your customers for feedback
It’s important to show your customers that you care about their feedback and that you’re constantly trying to improve their experience. One way to do this is to send out regular surveys.
- Make it easy to give feedback: Include a link in your email signature that goes to a short welcome survey about their experience.
- Or, if you have a physical product, include a card in the packaging that asks them to fill out a survey.
- You can also ask for feedback in person or on social media.
And don’t forget to actually use the feedback you get! When customers see you make changes based on their feedback, they’ll be more likely to trust and respect you.
10. Be transparent with your customers
Customers appreciate honesty and transparency, it is the cornerstone of strong customer relationships. If something goes wrong, let them know as soon as possible. And if you make a mistake, apologize. Customers will respect you more for owning up to your mistakes than for trying to cover them up.
Want to see how top sales teams are improving their customer relationships? Check out our sales solutions page to see how we can possibly work together. Ready to dive in? Request a demo today and take us for a spin.