If you can imagine each client relationship is like a bank account. The currency is love and the bank account balance will reflect the overall relationship health.
The transactions between you and your client will dictate your love account balance. For example, if you deliver on time, love goes in. This is a deposit, just like when you deposit some money at the real bank. If you deliver late, love goes out - just like an ATM withdrawal. If you give exceptional service, love goes in (another deposit). If you don't call a client back, love goes out (another withdrawal).
If a client walks away and chooses another supplier, even after years of loyal custom with your business, this is not the client's fault, or your competitor's fault, it's yours. What are you doing to build up the love account between your business and your client? If there are too many withdrawals and not enough deposits, as soon as a competitor comes along, you will lose that client - for good.
When I say clients, don't limit it to current clients, include past clients and prospective clients in the mix. Let me tell you a story about someone who really knows how to put some love in the bank...
Years ago I had a photocopier that was brand A. This sales person sold brand B photocopiers. After meeting him, he came to see me on a fairly traditional sales call. He asked what we needed, what our future needs were and if brand A was delivering what we expected. I told him brand A was great, it did exactly what we needed to, at the right price and I couldn't see any need for brand B. Now most sales people will say thanks very much and be on their way. Not this guy. He came back to see me every 6 - 8 weeks. Never to do a hard sell, just to say hi, touch base and ask how business was going. He was building a relationship.
Now I have never needed to buy a brand B photocopier from this guy, but I estimate I have referred to him approximately 10 sales since then. Not little $500 photocopier sales from Officeworks, big tens of thousands of dollars worth of sales. I refer him honestly, saying I have never bought from him, however I have experienced his service and it is second to none.
Across any industry.
Second to none.
People buy on value, not price and they want service. This guy probably doesn't even know how much I refer to him. He doesn't need to. Our relationship is not transactional, it is far past that. He has enough love in the bank with me to last years, literally. And all it took was a few visits.
What can you learn from my photocopier sales guy? How can you put some love in the bank with your clients? By showing clients some love, you can develop a more loyal and authentic working relationship. And who doesn't want loyal clients who are confident referring you to others?
Here are some simple, cost effective ways to put some love in the bank with your clients:
How will you put some love in the bank with your clients?