As the Christmas and holiday season comes to an end, and we look to the New Year, I was thinking about the parallels for how businesses interact with their customers.
My social media feed was filled with friends and family staying up to all hours of the night wrapping presents, and then being exhausted on Christmas day. This was done for the enjoyment of their children and the perpetuation of the myth (spoiler alert!) of Santa Claus. Parents go the extra mile for their most important relationships, and wouldn’t have it any other way!
In business, you similarly go the extra mile for your most important relationships, providing an experience to cultivate loyalty. And just as parents vary the experience for different aged kids, a business should tailor the engagement to customers in different stages. When a customer is new to you, it is critical to show your value, provide a timely service, and set your name apart from the competition. As customers grow, showing that you can grow with them and continue to provide a high level of service becomes paramount. After all, it is much more costly to find a new customer than to retain an existing one.
The alternative is one-and-done customers, with no brand loyalty. This results in a constant advertising and lead generation phase and a race to the bottom of discounts and gimmicks.
Do right by your customers, and they’ll do right by you. Here’s to a great 2016!
Photo courtesy of the Huffington Post.