What More Can Highly Competitive Businesses Do to Attract & Keep Customers?
Plenty! It’s shocking how little attention many highly competitive professional businesses, (including CPA’s, Financial Planner/Advisors, Law Firms, Medical practices, Realtors) and others pay to differentiate themselves in the marketplace. Attracting and keeping customers in today’s challenging economy is tough to do, however, it can be done. In fact, it is being done! It appears this is only a priority for those few who understand and practice the principles required to provide an “outstanding customer experience.” Others continue to fall victim to our culture of excuses… blaming the economy for the performance of their business. Plus, they continue to use outmoded, ineffective and expensive “push” marketing and sales strategies, rather than “pull!” Most everyone in this market sector continues to impress and win business by promoting their “good service.” How do they justify this to be a “compelling value proposition?”
Wake up! This is not working today and won’t work in the future, either. The recent paradigm shift in consumer attitudes and behaviors requires more to impress, win and keep customers than it ever did in the past. I remind audiences in all of my seminars that, “What got you where you are today won’t take you where you want to be in the future.” Today’s loyal customer requires being engaged and remembered; although they may be “out-of-sight…never “out-of-mind.” Keeping in touch with your customer frequently, dynamically and with relevance is easy, cost effective and imperative. It is disappointing that those who complain the most about how poorly their business is performing are the least interested in changing that condition. Especially when these strategies and tools are so easily available and implementable.
Our own clients have been using these strategies with great success. First, we sent all of the business cards they’d been collecting in shoe boxes for years, to ShoeBoxed.com, (www.shoeboxed.com). This service scans in business cards and creates a file for you. This enabled clients to import their contacts into a contact database program like ACT, SalesForce.com and others. They were then able to use that file with an on-line contact service called ACE-of-Sales, (www.aceofsales.com). From that point on our clients customers were mailed a hard-copy or emailed an appropriate card, to acknowledge the specific birthday, anniversary or other scheduled event. In a relatively short period of time, our clients began to experience positive results.
Alan Adler is an executive coach, speaker & author.
30. November 2010 by Alan
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