Managing your Customer Relationships
Every business person has a story about trying to land a client. Every customer service representative has a story about memorable customers they had to deal with. And every sales person has a story about ‘out of the box’ things they had to do to close a deal. In the end it is all about building relationships. So we asked a few of our recruiters what tips or advice they would have for how to get to know clients and customers better. They gave us some pretty good insight!
1 – Get out of the office
Go somewhere! It can be anywhere.
A restaurant, a bar, and a golf course are probably the most common places to meet. But that doesn’t mean you have to stop there, get creative! Take them to the opera, to a neighboring city like NYC, on a boat, on a hike. The sky is the limit, anywhere can be accessible by plane.
People act differently inside the office than they do outside the office, it’s a fact. Even if the purpose of your lunch meeting is business, you will act differently at a restaurant than if that same exact meeting was happening in a board room.
Bonus Idea: One of our recruiters said when he had trouble getting a meeting with a potential client he sent a calendar invite for lunch at the Four Seasons, the client never responded but he showed up to lunch. So don’t be afraid to think outside of the box and take a risk every now and then.
2 – Be Yourself
When you have their undivided attention, get to know them. Find out points of commonality that you might have i.e. children, hobbies, etc. Anything and everything is fair game, just be yourself. Not sure where to start? Visit their Linkedin page to see what their interests might be.
When you are in a more casual setting , pretenses are down and if you are truly relaxed being yourself the person or group you are with will be able to tell the difference and feel more comfortable themselves. Being yourself will open up more doors than you think. In the end we all have a lot more in common than we have separating us.
There is a saying “People do business with people they know, like, and trust”.
People do business with people. Not companies, people. So be a person, be yourself, and start building a genuine relationship.
3 – Listen
Listen to what they say. Not just what they say but how they say it, read between the lines. Listen to where the pain is and why. Know what you and your company can do to help relieve it!
People will appreciate that not only did you take the time to ask them about their needs and requirements but you really listened to them and retained the information so it can inform your decisions for them moving forward.
In a world full of noise: radio, television, phones, internet, pop-up ads, newspapers, gossip, and more the art of listening isn’t what it once was. One of the most profitable things you can do for your clients is to simply LISTEN.
The 3 ideas we listed above aren’t revolutionary and they aren’t new. We can attest that they are vital. If you take the time to implement any of our 3 ways to get to know your customer’s better it will be beneficial – we promise!