by Gareth Cartman, Director of Digital Marketing at Clever Little Design
Advanced technology, social media, CRM software, and other tools are changing the way companies market their brand and products. While the manner in which companies and consumers interact is changing, there are some tried-and-true approaches to marketing that should never be abandoned.
While these new techniques bring their own benefits, there are benefits from so-called old-school approaches that still help businesses create a better connection with their customers.
1. Build Rapport with Clients.
Everyone that works at your company is a potential representative of your brand and your products.
It is vital that all of your staff members maintain a professional attitude in the office because you never know what a visiting client might overhear, and when. Spend time training all of your employees to foster an environment that is welcoming and warm for all customers.
2. Make Customers Feel Special.
When you build a good rapport with your customers, it becomes easier to make each of them feel special. Show your clients that they are worth your time and attention by maintaining open lines of communication with them and offering your undivided attention when clients visit your business.
3. Timing is Crucial to Engagement.
Consumers are always willing to pay more for a greater quality. This applies equally to products and services, as well as customer service. A study by Totango found that 81% of consumers are willing to pay a little more a high-quality customer experience with a company. How and when your company interacts with its customers is important to.
Take, for example, the welcome email that often arrives after signing up for a new service. Many customers sign up for new online services, only to feel overwhelmed and not engage the product immediately. Many companies use automated emails through CRM software that sends new users a welcome newsletter with helpful tips for getting started on the service, and maybe guides them to the corporate blog for additional information that can help customers engage with the service more effectively.
4. Understand and Maintain the Value You Offer Customers.
Customer engagement with a brand is rarely the result of a whim. Many customers arrive in a store or on a website following a string of interaction. Understanding that long string of interactions is important because it allows your company to maintain the relationship throughout those channels that led a consumer to your products.
5. Constant Monitoring.
According to Entrepreneur Magazine, one of the greatest benefits of CRM software is the ability to monitor customer behavior on a daily basis. Just as the long string of interactions that generates business is important, the changing behaviors from day to day are also critical. The needs and desires of consumers can change, making the historical decisions that led them to your product just one piece of the puzzle. Current mindsets and attitudes impact the way they hope to use your product in the future.
Real-time feedback on customer behavior allows you to make product adjustments going forward that maintain a product that is deemed useful by consumers.
6. Prioritize Customers.
All of your company’s customers are important, but there are going to be those consumers that have more urgent needs. The attention you give to consumers should be based upon urgent needs rather than treating everyone’s interaction the same. For example, grocery delivery is an increasingly popular service in numerous countries.
If your service sends text messages or emails updating consumers on the status of their order and information about the driver making their deliver, it prioritizes that interaction based upon the consumer’s purchase. CRM software allows your company to manage those interactions and keep tabs on accounts that require immediate attention.
7. Diversify Client Accounts.
Prioritizing customer interactions is important, but ignoring potential clients is disastrous. Your product and service likely has the potential to positively impact multiple industries. It is a good idea to invest in low-revenue accounts with the same fervor that you chase down large corporations as high-value clients. Engaging a variety of customers from various industries ensures the long-term success of your brand, but requires an even approach applied to all clients.
CRM software can help you monitor the status of various clients, not just your high-value customers. Keeping all of your customers happy increases revenue, builds a loyal consumer base, and creates a positive image for your brand.
Customer Relationship Management software offers a number of benefits to your business, but nothing is perfect. As you adopt a CRM platform to improve your customer interactions, avoid these mistakes:
- Don’t be too ambitious: Every good project starts with baby steps. Don’t try jumping in the deep end of the pool. Give all of your projects time to grow and mature.
- Don’t leave CRM to IT teams: Your IT team is important to the employment of your CRM project, but success requires input from your sales, service, and marketing specialists as well to ensure it caters to client needs.
- Don’t skip on research: The success of CRM projects can change over time. Don’t be afraid to research new tools and processes that may prove more successful than current approaches.
Gareth Cartman is Director of Digital Marketing at Clever Little Design, and has spent his career working across marketing, HR and technology. For his sins, he is also a Boston Red Sox and an Everton fan. Follow Gareth on Twitter.