One of your roles as a business owner is to develop creative strategies to nurture your clients. Ben Stein once said, "Personal relationships are the fertile soil from which all advancement, all success, all achievement in real life grows."
As Bein Stein suggests, maintaining active customer relationships is crucial if you want to achieve substantial growth. To do this, you need a client-nurturing strategy that will build brand awareness and loyalty in your niche.
Let’s explore some of the ways to nurture your clients to build long-term relationships.
Why Nurture Your Business Clients?
Marketing is one of the biggest cost drivers in your business. Unfortunately, it is also one of the costs you cannot afford to avoid because, without marketing, there is no way to improve your sales and increase your business revenues.
You can minimize these costs once you learn the following hard facts.
It will cost you 5 to 25 times more to acquire a new customer than to retain an existing one. Also, increasing customer retention rates by 5% increases business profits by 25% to 95%.
Therefore, it’s better to be the smart business person who retains your existing customers and fosters long-term relationships instead of one with a high customer churn rate.
Here are more reasons why nurturing long-term relationships and retaining your existing customers is smart:
Greater customer loyalty translates to improved bottom-line
Loyal customers provide honest feedback in case of a survey
Loyal customers are more likely to refer your products and services to prospective customers
It leads to improved customer satisfaction
Let's now turn the page to the strategies to nurture your clients and build relationships with them.
1. Understand Your Clients
All relationships begin with an introduction of each party, and everything else is built from this point. The burden of kick-starting customer relationships mainly falls on you in a business situation.
Therefore, identify prospective customers with who you stand a better chance of developing a long-term relationship. Engage in customer market research to identify the right customers for relationship building.
In any relationship, you must identify the strong points that help you bond with the other party. For example, the customer's pain points may be good grounds for bonding with new or existing customers.
Customer research will help you identify customers' specific pain points in your market niche. You will also need to create customer groups based on their specific needs.
Note: you aren't the only business courting these customers. Therefore, point out the innovative solutions you will provide to resolve their pain points so you can win them over. Then once they become existing customers, nurture and cultivate the relationship to make it long-term.
2. Segment Your Customer Base
Every customer has unique needs. So, the solutions you provide each customer must align with their specific needs. Your clients need to feel that you value them, and that will encourage them to be open to a relationship with your business. Therefore, segment your client base so as to provide a customized customer experience for each customer.
Segmentation ensures that the client nurturing process is customer focused. That should be easy-peasy for you now that you have researched your customers and understood their needs, preferences, and objectives.
Segmenting will also influence how you communicate with each customer group. Your communications will differ between customers in the awareness and consideration stage. For example, you are more likely to start engaging with a customer in the awareness stage through a blog you have written addressing their pain points. It is the icebreaker you need to build a relationship with the new customer.
3. Improve Your Onboarding Process
The client onboarding process provides the perfect opportunity to start a relationship. It’s an opportunity to create a good first impression with your client.
The onboarding process provides your clients with a full introduction to your business. It also sets clear expectations, including the intention to develop a long-term relationship with the client.
Give the clients reasons to start trusting your business early in your relationship. Do this by tailoring the onboarding process to focus on the specific goals the client hopes to accomplish while working with you.
The onboarding process is a lot smoother with the right automation tools. The tools enable you to create customized workflows and onboarding videos that lay the foundations for your relationship with the new client.
4. Improve Your CRM System Efficiency
Your CRM systems are vital in coordinating your customer relationship-building efforts. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a technology that enables your business to build and improve customer relationships. It enables you to build customer loyalty, profits, and internal and external business functioning.
CRM is more than a technology; it is also a strategy to learn about your customer's needs and develop stronger relationships with them. Moreover, it is the technology you need to evolve your customer relationships and streamline your relationship-building processes.
Automated CRM tools like SuiteDash enable you to create a centralized hub to coordinate and automate several customer relationship management tasks. The automated systems will increase your efficiency in gathering customer interactions into a central place for improved customer experience and satisfaction.
The centralized hub also enables you to track and follow a customer's interaction journey. Therefore, it will be a lot easier to enhance your customer experience and journey by refining the customer touchpoints.
5. Provide Exceptional Customer Services
Believe it or not, all it may take to nurture your clients and develop lasting relationships is doing the basics right. For example, did you know that 82% of consumers want an immediate response from brands on sales or marketing questions? Immediate, in this case, means 10 minutes or less.
That’s an excellent place to start improving your customer relationships. Ensure that you maintain ten minutes or less policy in responding to any client inquiries. Take advantage of the chatbot customer service automation tool to achieve this goal.
It is also a known fact that customers are more loyal to brands that go above and beyond to resolve their issues. Therefore, create positive customer experiences by providing prompt solutions to their customers' challenges.
6. Create Value Added Content
Nurturing customer relationships is not an invitation to bombard your clients with all sorts of marketing content at your disposal. Customers are already receiving too much marketing content than they can handle. That explains why there is a growing trend of people taking a 'digital detox.'
Cultivate relationships with your clients by offering them a 'safe space' where they access value-added content that is free of marketing interests. Customers want to access educative and informative content to help them make better purchasing decisions.
For example, a prospective customer in the awareness or consideration stage will be interested in industry trends or product analysis information. That’s why the 'how to' or 'unboxing' videos on YouTube attract so many viewers. These viewers are after the high-quality and practical information being shared.
Your clients will also be more willing to subscribe to your email list or social media pages if they are guaranteed exclusive value-added resources. For example, SEO blogs with tips or guides on issues related to the customers' pain points will make your clients develop better relationships with your brand.
7. Offer Special Offers and Rewards
You will have better luck in attracting more loyal customers if your brand is known for offering exclusive promotions or discounts. For example, American Airlines has gained a competitive advantage for its customer appreciation reward and loyalty programs.
When customers are happy about your brand, it is easier to gain customer trust. Such rewards, customer loyalty, and discount programs cultivate a positive customer experience and improve customer relationships with your brand.
Start Nurturing Your Clients Today
It’s time to nurture your clients and build long-term customer relationships. Let us help you create an efficient process for building customer relationships.