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Improve Your Relationship with Customers and Partners

Posted by: Today's Tip Contributor on February 23, 2010

One of the biggest compliments my company ever received was when a competitor said, "We do what A Plus Benefits does." I believe that this is a direct result of our commitment to taking a hands-on approach with our customers and partners, especially in this age of e-mail, text messaging, and social networking. When I say hands-on, I mean taking the time to talk face-to-face with the people who will ultimately help you achieve your goals. Here are a few simple steps that will help you adopt this approach:

1. Listen to your customers. Don’t design a product or service and then try to force it down customers’ throats. The better approach is to spend time listening to the customers’ pain points and needs and then developing a solution that solves these problems and will be something they want and need to buy.

2. See the process through to the end. Don’t start the sales process and then turn around and do the ol’ bait and switch once the customer has committed to the purchase. By seeing things through to the end, you demonstrate your commitment to your customers.

3. Follow up. Customers will always appreciate being asked for their input on how the new product is working and how their team is adjusting to it. To keep the contact consistent, make sure the follow-up call comes from the same person who was involved with the customer from the beginning.

4. Be proactive in providing updates or changes. Customers never want to hear about an update or change after the fact. By your consistently alerting them to a change before it happens, customers gain confidence that unless you bring it up they don’t need to know about it.

I’ve found that our customers recognize and appreciate our commitment to them when we take this sort of hands-on approach. It creates feelings of loyalty and a sense of partnership that drives customers to invest in and give their full effort to the relationship.

Rick Bartholomew
A Plus Benefits
Lindon, Utah

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