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Build Your Bottom Line: Relationship Marketing Tips

Build Your Bottom Line: Relationship Marketing Tips

Here are 5 specific ways you can work to build those relationships

Terry L. Brock

Wanna get more business? Of course we all do. But the old ways of doing it have changed. That means we have to change to survive in a new culture and new world. Today’s marketing that works is oriented towards building strong relationships that are mutually beneficial. The old ways of “tricks and techniques” went out with the derby hat and cigar-smoking used car salesman. Ugh! Good riddance!

Effective marketing today calls for building solid, long-term relationships. This Relationship Marketing is critical for long-term business that is more relationally based than transactional.

Seth Godin’s new book about Tribes is a good example of how people want to be part of a special community. That could be those who go to a special place, buy a special product or follow a special leader. Think about Harley-Davidson bike riders who meet in Daytona Beach for their annual pilgrimage. Think about iPod owners who continually say how the “Love” (important word!) their iPods. Think about those who follow a rock band, a teacher or even a political figure. We all want to be part of a special group, a tribe, where we feel we belong and our special needs are met.

This is not about slick tactics. Recently I heard a speaker who demonstrated the exact wrong way to build relationships. He said he could help you get past the doorkeeper and get in to see the buyer. This speaker talked about several tactics which struck me as deceptive, conniving and even down-right dishonest. Maybe this would work temporarily in some situations but it sure doesn’t work to build solid, long-term relationships.

This is using tactics and tricks to deceive the customer. That is not what relationship marketing is about. Relationship Marketing is about sincerely listening to the needs of the prospect and customer and being there in a helpful way. You don’t become a trusted advisor by having a “bag of tricks” and slick maneuvers to deceive the prospect into meeting with you.

Think of it like farming - Relationship Farming. You build solid relationships over time helping to produce a bountiful harvest for both parties.

Next page: 5 Tips to Build Those Relationships