Tag: Relationship Marketing

Commit to Relationship Marketing This Year

Often small businesses owners put a lot of time, attention, and focus on meeting and building relationships with new people. They don’t spend nearly enough of that energy on relationship building or retention with connections they’ve already made. 

If you want to encourage brand loyalty and stay top of mind with your current network, you’ll need a plan for that. While some people are natural connectors, it’s simple to let valuable relationship-building efforts slip through the cracks in the daily hustle of running a company.

Follow-Up Strategy

Wherever you go out and represent your brand in public, it’s likely you will meet people and establish connections. Whether it’s a cold lead, a warm prospect, a member of your target audience, or a potential collaboration partner – it’s essential that you follow up with the people you meet to stay top of mind and begin building that professional relationship. Common follow-up strategies include:

  • Bring a sharpie with you to jot down notes on the back of the business card of the individual.
  • Using a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software to organize your contacts and notes.
  • Create a follow-up schedule and use a spreadsheet or software to keep you on track.
  • Create a sequence of actions that ensures you touch base with each person several times. This could look like an email, a handwritten card, a phone call, or an invitation to another event. 

Building Relationships

People want to be seen and heard. Do your clients know that you ‘get them’ and that you are in their corner – rooting and cheering for them? Honestly, there are probably plenty of companies that provide similar services to yours. This means that building loyalty is important for client retention. 

Do your clients hear from you on a monthly basis via email, zoom meetings, and handwritten notes or gifts? If not, what plan do you have to keep communication open between you and your clients and to nurture the relationship you are building with them? Your marketing and business strategy is essential but so is developing a plan for client retention and nurturing your leads.

Getting to Know People

A one-size-fits-all strategy rarely works as well as business owners would like. Yes, it is simpler and less time-consuming to create a client appreciation or retention strategy for everyone on your list. However, to really make an impact with your people you need to get personal. A personal touch will go much further, and inspire more loyalty, than a non-personalized approach.

One way to personalize your efforts is to uncover your client’s love language. Why? While some people respond well to gifts, other people don’t care anything at all about receiving gifts. The same could be said of the other languages of love including words of affirmation, quality time, or acts of service. While the love languages were designed to improve romantic relationships, it’s not too large of a leap to envision how they can apply to the relationships you are creating and nurturing with your business. To find out more about the five love languages, visit this website.

Looking for a new networking group to meet people and try out your new follow-up plan? Expand your professional network and build authentic connections in a community of like-minded women.  Join us for our WEBOs Lunch and WEBOs After Hours Networking events. Open to all women entrepreneurs and business owners.

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Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

The Current Pivot to Online Networking

If networking was a part of the marketing strategy for your small business before 2020, you’ve seen big pivots and shifts this past year as connectors scramble to keep meetings happening and maintain their relevance during a pandemic. While it’s true that online networking looks quite a bit different than connecting in-person, months of testing, creative ideas, and innovation from caring and charismatic leaders have shown us that not only do online events work – but they have their own benefits and rewards. 

Finding the Right Networking Group

If you haven’t dipped a toe into networking yet, now is a great time to start. What better way to try out new groups than from the convenience of your computer or smartphone? We encourage networkers – old and new – to visit a variety of groups that are hosting online events to see what synergies may develop. 

Follow-Up Strategy

Just like with in-person networking, it’s more effective to have a follow-up strategy devised before you attend any new meetings to ensure that you are maximizing the connections you make online and nurturing those leads into actual relationships. Make it a point to set one-to-one appointments during these meetings with both potential collaborative partners AND any individuals that fit your ideal client avatar. A goal of even one meeting with someone new can lead to great things. Having a plan and being consistent are the keys to a successful follow-up strategy.

Make Connection Easy

Everyone is busy. Make connecting with new leads and partners easy by setting up a process for future connection. Create a Zoom account and offer to host a get to know each other meeting. Make it easy for them to schedule by setting up an online scheduling tool. 

Our advice is that you make the focus of that first one-to-one meeting relationship building, collaboration, asking deeper questions, and getting to know one another. Save the sales pitch to use after a relationship has been established and nurtured (unless they ask the right questions, of course!). The goal is to make new connections, establish yourself as an authority in your field, and explore opportunities that benefit everyone.

Looking for new groups? WEBO Network provides Professional Development Trainings, Masterminds and connection building opportunities on a regular basis, in a safe, virtual environment. I’m proud to lead the Southeast Denver chapter and would love the opportunity to introduce us to some fantastic women entrepreneurs and business owners!

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

Celebrate Your Client Retention Goals

Many small business owners set annual goals, but nowhere near as many make goals that relate to client retention. I think most people know by now that it costs more money to replace a client than to nurture and appreciate your current ones, but still businesses just don’t consider the importance of client retention efforts (often until it’s too late).

If you did set goals for client retention this year, take a moment to celebrate your thoughtfulness and follow through on those goals.

Then check out these ideas for client retention that you can implement this year:

Purposeful Partnerships

Have you been keeping your eyes open for possible collaboration opportunities with your clients? Teaming up and working on something together – whether it be a new launch or a community service endeavor – is a great way to celebrate your business relationship by creating something that makes the world better. Be certain to share your successes on your website and on social media.

Share Your Customer’s Success Stories

Hopefully, you have connected to your clients on social media already. If you are, then spend time each week reviewing their most recent posts, engaging with their content, and sharing their successes on your own social media feeds. It’s a fantastic way to show your clients that you appreciate them and what they do and shows your audience how dedicated you are to your clients at the same time.

Client Appreciation

The middle of the year is a great time to think about client appreciation, especially if you haven’t gotten around to showing your gratitude yet. This could look like many things:

  • Sharing how much you appreciate your client on social media.
  • Hosting an online or in-person appreciation event (promoting it through social media or creating an online group where everyone can connect and celebrate together).
  • Writing a handwritten note.
  • Sending a thoughtful gift.

It’s good to do something thoughtful, that puts your clients in the spotlight, at least once a year. If you haven’t had a chance yet, now is a great time to start planning how you will show your appreciation for their belief in you and your business.

Profits and your bottom line are important. Spreading awareness about your business is important. Finding new leads to keep your company growing is important. However, don’t take your attention away once a lead signs on the dotted line and becomes a customer. Client retention is one of the most important aspects of running a successful business. Solid client relationships will pay dividends in the long run and are worth celebrating often.

By celebrating your clients on social media, you are showcasing to your potential customers what they can expect when doing business with you. Did you know that every social media platform is searchable? Each channel is its own search engine and also appears in the results of popular web browsers (like Google). Every word matters. Have you completely filled out your social media profiles? Is your messaging current? Have you optimized your opportunities to be found in search using your social media accounts? If not, now is the time to get your channels revamped! You’ll be amazed at the results. Book a discovery session here and ask us about Robust Profile Optimizations.

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

How You Build Social Proof as an Influencer in Your Industry Through Social Media

What is social proof and why is it relevant to your small business?

Social proof is the moment when a lead, observer, or potential client comes across your social media marketing efforts and decides that you are a relevant, legitimate, trusthworthy source of information for your industry. We don’t get social proof just by deciding to become a business owner. It’s not automatic or guaranteed. There are things we must do to convince people that we know what we are talking about and are worth following.

Here are our best tips for building social proof so that you can become an influencer through social media:

Be Consistent

Many social media experts will tell you that it’s better to have zero presence on social media than it is to have an outdated or inconsistent presence. Why is that?

Because inconsistency sends a message to your audience that you aren’t available, you aren’t present, and you aren’t concerned about your followers.

It also makes you less relevant. Why follow your brand on social media when there are so many others maintaining an active presence?

Plus, inconsistency sends a message to the algorithms. The quickest way to lose traction with the social media platforms is to train them that you aren’t around. This means that your content isn’t as valuable and your posts will be shared less frequently.

Show Up (Both Offline and Online) 

If you are attending trade shows, workshops, conferences, or networking events – you should be posting pictures of yourself at the event, yourself with other brands or influencers, and keeping your audience updated on what you are doing to stay relevant, educated, and a mover or shaker in your industry. These sorts of posts create instead credibility and authority as your followers live vicariously through your business adventures!

Actually Influence Your Audience

Your audience is following you because they value your expertise and opinions. This means you should show up frequently, video is most effective, with recommendations for products and/or services, advice, industry news, and opinions related to your area of experience.

Whether you are teaming up with a power partner, becoming an affiliate for a product or service, collaborating with online or offline events, or simply being generous with your knowledge – influencing people means you have to stand for something.

 

Building social proof is as simple as making it a priority to consistently show up and build your authority in your industry. This automatically makes you more legitimate on social media while improving your ability to influence others. Being present, with a heart towards generous service and helping your audience as much as you can, gives people a reason to follow you, engage with your posts, and share your information with others.

 

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.


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