Here’s something you might not know about your business: Money is not where you look for it.
I bet this sounds weird. Let’s face it, you probably thought you knew where to look for money before you even considered running a business. Not to mention that there is plenty of advice everywhere on the subject. You hear it everywhere:
The money is in a mailing list. Or in providing a great customer service.
It is in your sales pipeline too, get plenty of prospects and it is a given that some will buy from you. The money is in doing great work. The money is in pleasing your clients or in playing golf with them. Or in connections, friends from school that are on high positions.
Or …. no, sorry, I have to stop here. It’s in fact in none of the above.
Sure, this is how you get the money, but in reality, the money, the BIG money I should say is somewhere else.
The money is in LOYALTY.
Lists, long pipelines, lists of prospects, price, customer service, great work, all this can be beaten.
Your mailing list is not the only one the person subscribes to. Your customer service is great but what if they are after the price instead? There is always someone cheaper. Great work matters but many people can provide even better quality, sorry.
LOYALTY on the other hand is one thing your competitors can’t beat. Your clients cannot be loyal to you and them at the same time. They can’t be loyal to you today and to someone else tomorrow.
If they are loyal to you, then it’s you only.
Loyal clients are your biggest asset
Loyal customers will give you more business. They will pay you a much higher price. They will tell their friends about you and will inspire them to buy from you. Hell, they might even make them to do so. They will forgive you small errors and won’t go somewhere else straight away. They will help you when you need help. They will advocate for you.
And most importantly, they will never even consider taking a call from your competitor.
Building a loyal client base should be the primary objective of any small business.
By doing so you will quickly increase your revenue and earn more money.
How you can create loyal clients
I could probably write a book about it and still do not exhaust the subject. But, for the sake of keeping this post short, I will consolidate it down to one sentence only, actually, two words will be enough:
If your clients trust you with all their hearts, minds and every limb in their bodies, they will be loyal to you. If they know they can rely on you in any situation, they will be loyal too.
Here are some proven formulas that work:
- Inspire your clients, everyday
- Be honest with them, always, even if this means embarrassing yourself and admitting a mistake
- Build a relationship with them, don’t just sell to them
- Do what you promise
- Don’t promise what you can’t / don’t want to do
- Constantly offer solutions, not only acknowledge problems
It will all take time to implement these, true. Once you do that though, you will see amazing results that are more than worth working for.
But hey, do you want to know one kick ass thing you can start doing right now, today to start creating loyal clients?
Ring them. No, not just call them. Keep in touch with your customers, regularly. Don’t wait for them to call you with a problem, new project or to ask for a solution. Don’t hide away from their questions only because you have already been paid for the work.
Instead, check up on them regularly on your own initiative. It doesn’t actually take much. Simply call them out of the blue once every week, month, quarter (you will know better how often you should do it, they are your client after all). Or call in to their offices unannounced whenever you are nearby.
Don’t talk sales, don’t ask for more work. Just check up how are things with the project you did for them recently. Or to see if whatever solution you applied the last time worked.
Make sure that your clients know that you are there for them and that you care. Believe me, this one thing alone will be enough to make them loyal. To you.
Before you go, ask yourself those questions. You might be surprised by your answers.
- What company are you loyal to?
- Why you are loyal to them?
- Are you implementing any of those reasons in your own business?
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