Without customers and clients, we don’t have business. They are the lifeblood, the cashflow, the raison d’etre for many businesses. If we love our customers great things happen. Like babies, customers pick up on whether you love them or not. If they feel the love from you then they refer, they come back and they buy more. A question to ask yourself this Valentine’s Day is, “do I really love my customers”? If the answer is no – it’s time to fall back in love with your customers and fast. Your business needs you to!
Before we look at falling back in love, it’s important to explore why we may have fallen out of love with our customers. Two common reasons are:
- We are in a funk ourselves and need a break
- Our customers are no longer profitable for us
If your customers are unprofitable for you, then either change your pricing structure or attract more profitable customers who use less resources. If you are in need of a holiday, then look after yourself as a business owner. If you are tired and grumpy because you need a holiday, it’s difficult to love anyone! Working with people can take it out of you and if you are in a service business, it’s important to make that time to recharge. Your grumpiness can lose you business so you can’t afford not to take a break.
Quick remedies to get the customer love flowing are:
1. Reflect on the things that customers do for your business i.e. how they appreciate your product or service, how they build your business by their word of mouth, how they bring in money to pay the bills, enable you to work for yourself, make you smile and allow you to help them.
2. Identify a couple of your favourite customers and explore what it is you like about them.
3. Conduct a customer satisfaction survey. You can’t help but fall in love with customers when they have nice things to say about you.
4. Ring up your favourite customers and thank them for being great customers.
5. Give some love to get some love. Do something nice for your customers – not just your favourites but all of them. It can sometimes just change your perspective.
Ailsa Page, Small Business Marketing Expert and Director, AP Marketing Works