The secret to creating deep customer relationships

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by Steve Holt on October 25, 2015

I was frustrated. I had been communicating via email back and forth all day with a tech support rep at the company who makes the product that I wasn’t very happy with. It wouldn’t work and the tech support person was trying to give me possible solutions to remedy the problem. At the end of the work day I knew he was probably getting ready to leave, and my problem still wasn’t solved. And that’s when it happened. He sent me one last email providing me his personal email and cellphone number so that he could continue to help me over the weekend if I needed it.

Over the weekend he provided me a few more ideas, which eventually solved my problem. And not only was I happy that the problem was solved, I was even more impressed that the guy gave me some of his personal time over the weekend to do it.

Too many businesses don’t realize just how simple it is to deepen customer relationships and build equity at the same time. I am sure you believe, as I do, that customer service in general across just about any industry you can name has gotten worse over the years. There are more technology tools and social media tools available today that enable businesses to provide good customer service, but it just seems like nobody really gives a crap about customer service anymore. Which is why you can literally set yourself apart by simply going the extra mile for someone.

How do you deepen customer relationships? You do something for them that’s unexpected. At the register you keep a copy of the discount coupon that you emailed out to customers, so that you can pull it out and surprise the customer when they say they forgot it at home. You make a follow-up phone call to the customer just to make sure that they got the check. You send a sincere hand-written thank you note to the customer to tell them you appreciate their business. You go out of your way, above and beyond, to make the customer happy. That’s how you deepen customer relationships. And that’s how you make sure that your customers drive past your competitors to get to you.

So my question to you now is… what have you done lately to surprise your customers? If you haven’t done anything, then now is as good a time as any to start.

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