Marketing is no longer about simply getting your product or service in front of potential customers. It has become the cornerstone on which all other aspects of the relationship between your business and the customer are built. The future of marketing is in the practice of Customer Relationship Marketing.
The First Communication
A majority of the first communication a customer will have with a business will be a form of marketing. These communications range from a commercial, radio, or print ad to a social media encounter or a Google search result. First impressions have always been said to go a long way, but in today’s competitive marketplace it couldn’t be more accurate because chances are that there are many companies that offer whatever product or service you provide.
Creating Two-Way Communication
We live in a connected world, and we need to market to a connected world. Fostering open two-way communication is one of the main ingredients to success. We want our customers to feel like they are a part of our company and brand, not simply a dollar sign or profit margin. We do this by building a lasting relationship and opening the gate of two-way communication.
Many “new age” forms of marketing have two-way communication built right in. On social media pages and advertisements, and in content driven posts – people have the ability to like, share, and comment. Websites are also a great way to foster a relationship. It is key to make sure that a visitor can contact you – whether it is through email, social media, or some other form. On the flipside, many “traditional” marketing methods cannot foster two-way communication. But, by utilizing that traditional method to motivate people to visit their social media pages, blogs, or websites companies can convert a one-way communication into something more.
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
Two-way communication, like with all things, can be extremely successful or (even though we don’t like to admit it) go horribly wrong. Having a marketing campaign that goes viral and attracts millions of views, hits, or website visits is the dream of any company. It’s a HUGE amount of attraction and reach for a relatively low price and can generate a healthy amount of new warm leads. When two-way communication goes awry it is important to address the situation immediately. By handling any problems quickly and efficiently you reduce the chances of a negative viral outcome. Have no fear, though, because negative two-way communication can be good if you know what to do with the information provided. Before the age of social media it might take a company months to find out that people were dissatisfied. Now a company can find out instantly and work to correct those problems. By working with consumers and showing empathy and concern you can take a bad situation and spin into a trusting and lasting relationship. On top of that consumers are more likely to trust a person who recommends your brand than any form of advertisement.
A solid relationship with their customers is one of the most powerful tools in a brand’s arsenal. That relationship starts from the very first exposure a customer has with your brand. Since this is typically some form of marketing it is important to be mindful of your marketing strategy, focus on fostering two-way communication, and place a priority on customer relationship marketing.
Looking to begin building customer relationship marketing into your marketing efforts? Click here to find out how we can help you build a lasting relationship with your customers!