Relationship marketing is a practice where companies apply a series of strategies in order to spread the brand, attract customers, retain them and create an ever greater market authority. Its application is intended, therefore, to delight customers and keep the company always ahead of the competition.
Relationship is a fundamental part of our life in society. Without it, we can hardly be or do anything.
In the business world, this is a premise that holds true. It’s something that drives companies toward success or failure.
This “practice”, so to speak, is even more important in an increasingly technological and competitive world.
Competition grew, improved and this made customers increase their demand.
Today, delivering is no longer enough. It is necessary, more than offering quality, to give something more to delight and retain consumers.
Relationship marketing exists to meet these practices and help companies become more and more relevant.
In this text, we will talk about the concept and application of this technique. We will also discuss some tips and also the benefits for organizations.
What is relationship marketing?
Relationship marketing are those oriented actions that a company performs around a positive relationship with its ecosystem.
And then, we do not need to think that these acts only occur in relation to customers.
Suppliers, partners, employees and everyone involved in the business are targets of the search for a positive, lasting and, of course, profitable relationship.
However, the customer focus in this strategy is obviously greater.
Even because, as we said at the beginning of this article: competition is big, growing and also has its strategies in progress.
With the same products or services, at prices that are equal, it is necessary to create a competitive differential to attract the attention of prospects .
Therefore, relationship marketing is intended to promote an affective bond between consumer and brand.
For this, it is based on some marketing tips and also strategies – these, we will see better later.
However, be clear from the outset that this practice aims (as it should be) to sell more and better.
His aim is therefore to create much more than consumers: he wants to create fans. Brand evangelists.
This is, for example, critical to bringing new customers in.
The influence of someone who is having a lot of success with their solution makes new customers appear, which is decisive for the reduction of CAC, Cost of Acquisition of Customers .
The approximation between customer and company does not only benefit the former. He, of course, gets more agile and personalized answers to his “pains”.
But organizations have invaluable, detailed feedback and are able to learn a lot from their buyer-persona .
And that, of course, will give insights to improve the product/service sold and the way it is delivered to the market.
Big brands apply relationship mkt
Some of the best known brands in the world use constant practices to strengthen customer relationships.
Examples of this is how Adidas and Nike are always present on social networks, traditional media and especially on sports stages.
We can name Apple and all their work and devotion to UI and UX . Or in Coca-Cola, which awakens the affective memory of everyone – especially on commemorative dates.
Netflix is another successful example of the application of these strategies aimed at a closer relationship with its users.
All you have to do is go into your social networks and notice testimonials from people well served in support and also marketing actions that quickly go viral.
It doesn’t have to be a big company, however, to be memorable to people.
Small businesses can and should also bet on relationship marketing to be remembered affectionately by everyone.
And when that happens, a transformative power takes over everything that involves the company.
The importance of relationship marketing for companies
Having a strategic plan for the business is obviously fundamental and indispensable.
Only with this is it possible to adopt relationship marketing and define the goals and objectives that the company seeks to achieve with practice.
More than that, defining an action schedule, applying the actions at the right times and measuring everything that is done are equally essential tasks.
Having said that, we are back to a point that we have already covered here, about the fact that these actions are, in the end, aimed at selling.
Cultivating a relationship is a decisive practice for a company to achieve more sales.
This must obviously happen from the beginning. In the inbound marketing strategies aimed at attracting customers even more assertive.
Within this context, it is possible to have a much more interactive communication – and be recognized for it within your market.
Digital resources provide this possibility and applying this strategy on social networks is extremely valuable.
More than that, the confidence and security that the brand will transmit to everyone will undoubtedly be much greater.
To keep the memory of those who trust you up to date, email marketing – when used correctly and delivering value – is an efficient way to keep this relationship alive.
Tips on how to have successful relationship marketing
But, how to put relationship marketing strategies into practice? What are the first steps to be taken and to be really effective in this mission?
The main and starting point is the full knowledge about your consumers . What is the ideal customer profile (ICP) ?
You can do this by querying each customer’s data after a purchase. Or run satisfaction surveys like NPS frequently.
Ah! To ensure that the questionnaire will be filled out, attach some gift, some benefit to get as many answers as possible.
Don’t forget to ask the most important question of all: “would you recommend our company to a friend or partner of yours?”
Once you’ve mastered everything that surrounds your customers, it’s time to target and deliver a personalized delivery.
In fact, personalized and real-time delivery are factors that increasingly give companies a competitive advantage. Especially in B2B sales.
What does that mean?
It is necessary to separate customers into groups of common interests and relate to them by delivering something that is really valuable.
Produce good content that arouses good feelings in people and that makes sense for who they are and what they are looking for.
Have organization and control
Effective relationship marketing only generates good results when it is developed in a solid and organized way.
And, above all, it only makes sense to people and the company when there is control and management over what is done.
In other words, it’s no use doing some sparse action to satisfy the customer for a moment and then forgetting about its existence.
What image would the company have? Does it finally get the customer to buy, and once that happens, the relationship just ends?
After all, they communicate with each other and, after negative news spreads, it is much more expensive to remedy.
It is essential to maintain regularity in order to be true to your customers and ensure an ever-increasing loyalty rate.
And this, of course, will be reflected in the company’s business performance and also in the sales cycle to be followed to ensure that the opportunity is won.
Therefore, it is a good practice to establish an action schedule. Using the kanban model is an excellent way to achieve that needed organization.
Again: without control there is no marketing management . This sentence is true and, therefore, every action taken needs to be monitored.
That means: was there a good open rate in the triggered email? Link clicks? Engagement in the post made on the social network?
Measure the receptivity and obviously the ROI of what was done. Adapt what is necessary and follow the path.
4 strategies applied in relationship marketing
To make the task even clearer, we’ve separated some more common strategies to apply to relationship mkt.
These are some actions – far from being complex – to put into practice in the company’s routine.
Of course, it is essential to have a team capable of doing this, focused on being agile and positively impacting people.
Being in tune with what is said on social media is also a good way to generate positive engagement.
But be careful about that. Know where to step, understand what makes sense or not for the company. Be smart, especially when embarking on any current meme.
That said, we’ve separated 4 strategies for applying relationship marketing.
1 – Interact on social media
The first strategy is precisely the one we started to mention a few lines above. But, it is important to clarify that it is necessary to maintain regularity.
Posting once a day – especially Monday through Friday – is important to always be present in your fans’ feed.
It doesn’t have to be daily on the same social network. Even because, it will depend on the peculiarity of each business.
But look to LinkedIn to deliver higher quality content, such as a blog post that is very instructive, or rich material.
On Instagram, sharing the company’s day-to-day things is a great way to generate empathy and show a little of the people who make the company.
On Facebook, distribute content and look for good interactions in posts. Publicize your events too, or actions.
Always share good news, studies in all your networks.
But, above all, answer questions and especially complaints in the most real time possible. Show yourself available.
The goal is to seek interaction (positive, of course) at all times. Create polls, ask questions.
Encourage comments and sharing so content can reach more people.
2 – Remember important dates
Remembering relevant dates is a great way to show that the company cares about the person – not just their money.
A friendly birthday email, greeting the customer (and even offering a discount) is an excellent way to accomplish this mission.
Automate these shots with your commercial management system, taking advantage of the registration with complete information on each of your consumers.
Thus, you receive an alert so that the shot is a reality on the right day and in the right measure.
3 – Service with quality
While obvious, customer service is constantly needed to ensure that the customer is loyal to the brand.
Technology, by the way, is fundamental in this mission . And we can think of its application in different ways.
One of them is the use of chatbots or online chats , which speed up the process and can resolve any issue in minutes.
Relationship marketing is built on trust. So, nothing better than a fast and efficient service for this.
After all, it’s no use having an amazing product if before and after the purchase the customer is not served in the way he deserves.
4 – Create a loyalty program
One of the ways to seek to have a lasting and better relationship with your customers is through a loyalty plan.
However, it takes a lot of planning – even so as not to create false expectations in your consumers. Which, let’s face it, would be a real disaster.
Define the award, the rules for participation and operation, the requirements for participating, scoring and progressing (if there are stages), the software that will follow up, among others.
Make the rules and awards clear and encourage everyone to participate through your communication channels.
Digital marketing is relationship marketing
Thinking strategically about relationship marketing means understanding that each action has an objective. No matter how small it is.
Therefore, when we introduce the concept of digital marketing, we understand that there is no point in creating amazing posts on social networks if, tied to them, there is no clear and specific purpose.
One of the clearest benefits of using digital marketing to strengthen customer relationships is the investment required to do so.
It is – and almost always will be – much smaller than traditional media.
That’s because, when creating content, a company is proposing to help people and provide some positive experience.
The intention is to arouse an immediate good feeling and make this potential customer want to come back – even if he hasn’t turned into a lead yet.
He is building a trusting relationship with the brand. It is taking its first steps on the customer journey.
So, precisely for this reason the actions need to be continuous – that’s what we said a little above in this article.
So use technology to your advantage
When that person finally feels confident in providing their contact, your company’s marketing needs to be prepared.
Let’s say she filled out a form and downloaded an infographic.
From this moment on, a marketing automation needs to be triggered, providing it with increasingly more instructive and in-depth content.
This will give her enough support so that the pre-sales team can approach her, asking about her interest in the product or service sold.
From there, the qualification of this lead continues and the sale approaches to occur.
And it will be given to someone who will be delighted with the company, which greatly reduces the possibility of a churn .
Take advantage of your sales system and take all the necessary steps to ensure customer success before, during and after the purchase.
So, how can we help you?
Enjoy and read two articles that will help you delight more customers every day.
The first one talks about some tips for a more qualified lead generation .
The second deals with how to use color psychology in marketing and positively draw attention from your customers