In my last post, found here, I talked about the difference between having a big customer/client list and having a Fiercely Loyal client community. The first steps to ensuring your organization has the latter is establishing a clear definition for “high quality client relationships”. This is a fundamental building block of Fierce Loyalty, so it is imperative that you and your team members have a clear vision.
I’ve worked with so many organizations who are on a quest to get this right. As they ramp up the conversations about what they consider to be a high quality client relationship, it’s exciting to see the engagement level this topic generates. Everyone, from the receptionist, to the sales team to the designers have strong thoughts and ideas about what this definition should include. The conversation alone creates an internal community building experience (bonus points!).
And while I can’t provide a one-size-fits-all definition of a high quality client relationships for you, I can share a few common themes to get your conversation started:
- It’s about the value you provide rather than the amount of money a client spends. Rather than thinking about what high quality relationships do for your organizations, i.e. “This client generated X number of sales or $XX of business.”, frame your definition around what value you bring to the client, i.e. “Because of the level of service we provide, we are considered a partner rather than a goods or service provider.”
- It’s about what a client says about you to others. Your high value clients talk about you. They rave about the level of service your provide. They refer others to you.
- It’s about longevity. You’re invested in your high value client relationships for the long haul. You see the vision of where they are trying to go and you want to help them get there.
So here’s my challenge to you: bring your team together and start a conversation about how your organization defines a high value client relationships. Use my three ideas above to kick-start the discussion. Bring in the thoughts and opinions of everyone, not just your sales team. Create an organization-wide definition and task every single team member with creating these kinds of relationships.
The world is filled with businesses that measure client value by how much money they spend. By focusing on creating value and building high value relationships that start and end with you, you will stand out from your competitors and lay the foundation for creating a Fiercely Loyal community of clients who will not leave you. And that is the highest value client relationship there is.