Last month I joined an online dating site hoping to find Mr. Right and indulge in a little harmless flirting.
While I didn’t find any love, I certainly enjoyed some flirtatious fun and meeting up with a few likely prospects.
I got bored, with my matches. No one really captured my attention let alone my affection. Profile after profile pretty much read the same as the last guy. Where was the attempt to engage me in conversation, to be interesting and interested? The whole process all got too boring and annoying. So I gave up my search for Mr. Right and closed my account.
It’s all about developing relationships. Whether you’re looking for love or customers you need to be willing to cultivate a relationship with your prospects, especially if you want them to stay and continue doing business with you.
In order to start building a relationship with your customers you’ve got to engage in a little conversation.
Stage 1 – Getting to know you
As a business you’ve got to start the conversation by letting potential customers learn about your services or products. Let them get to know you and what you’re offering, and at the same time get to know your customer. The more you know about your customer the better you can tailor your offerings to them. Identify their needs and they will identify with you as the solution to their problem.
Stage 2 – Developing rapport, feeling groovy
After all the groundwork of getting to know each other you start developing a rapport with your customers and they like what you have to offer and enjoy doing business with you. Everyone’s feeling groovy, and word gets around that you’re great to do business with – you understand your customers and deliver what you promise. You’re making all the right impressions with the people that matter – your customers!
Stage 3 – Feel the love
You’ve been making all the right moves, identifying your customers’ needs, developing a rapport with your customers and they in turn are so into you, your products or service and are happy to spread the love around. All this great customer relationship building is gaining you authority in your niche, loyalty and trust. You can’t beat a loyal customer base that know, like and trust you and will stick with you through good times and bad. It looks like we’ve got ourselves a healthy relationship going.
Stage 4 – Don’t blow it
To keep the love flowing, you need to stoke the fire. Regularly “courting” and “flirting” with your customers will keep them interested. You don’t want them to start dating the enemy – your competitor. As with any relationship it’s important to keep the lines of communication open. Don’t blow it by getting complacent; give away freebies from time to time, make them feel appreciated and continue to be the hero or heroine that saves your customers’ dilemmas and you’ll always have their loyalty.
If you want to win more customers, perhaps it’s time to really engage with them and work towards building a better relationship for greater business success.
Because running a business is much like dating, it’s all about capturing attention, engaging in conversation, establishing rapport and making people fall in love with you.