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Do Your Business Practices Foster Customer Loyalty? – Business Times Column #95

by Marcus

Marcus Straub

Marcus Straub

Customer loyalty is fostered through consistently high-caliber business practices. It happens when customers receive such tremendous value in the quality, quantity and price of your products and services they won’t buy elsewhere. It happens when the customer service you provide is undeniably superior and you satisfy and even exceed their wants and needs on a consistent basis. Simply stated, when customers come to think of your business first and foremost, you’ve fostered loyalty in them.

Attracting and keeping customers has nothing to do with smoke and mirrors or taking advantage of others. We’ve all endured experiences with a company or person who just wants to “make the sale” — who sees people as dollar signs and nothing more. There’s no denying how distasteful this is and how it destroys the customer relationship.

One of the great fallacies of business marketing is the perception you must “take advantage” of people’s insecurities, vulnerabilities and fears in the buying process — that who they are must be used against them to close the deal. That’s not marketing, it’s manipulation. Approaching business this way is not necessary or wise — nor does it foster loyalty.

Building customer loyalty isn’t about being in competition with other businesses. It’s far wiser and more effective to be the best you can be in your pursuit of excellence. Each business has its own potential. Staying focused on your business potential — rather than becoming distracted with the “competition” — will serve you well in the process of reaching your greatest potential sooner and enjoying the journey.

The truest, most integrity based and powerful way to do business is it to treat customers with dignity and respect. Care about them and their well-being just as much as you would for your own friends and family members. With this type of business approach, no one is taken advantage of and everyone benefits from the transactions.

Customers have a choice whether to do business with you or not. Their decisions become an easy one when your company consistently delivers exceptional value. It’s not just the product or service you offer. It’s also the customer service you provide. It’s a package deal that all together keeps them coming back and referring others.

Effective marketing is also an essential factor in building a loyal customer base. Potential customers first have to know you exist. They also need incentives or a reason to do business with you. When they do choose your business from the number of options they have, you must deliver on your promise to them. Their first impression and every impression after that is critical in creating loyal fans.

As a business owner engaged in the day-to-day operations of your company, it can be difficult — if not impossible — to see and understand how your success is limited. It’s therefore imperative to work with a competent, knowledgeable, unbiased and objective business coach or consultant to help you build a business model and employ consistent business practices that make it easy for customers to be loyal. This invaluable assistance will provide you with a comprehensive view of your business, revealing strengths that can easily be leveraged and bringing clarity to areas of the operation that, when improved, will catapult your company to the ranks of the exceptional.

In the end, creating an exceptional company that customers think of first when looking to satisfy their wants and needs is about integrity. This involves consistently doing your absolute best in meeting and even exceeding the desires of your current and potential clientele. It’s about delivering maximum value to the people who make your business possible.

Your business doesn’t have to be perfect to create exceptional value for your customers. And it won’t be. Your company simply needs to operate with a high degree of accountability, integrity and caring on a consistent basis. Your customers and the communities you serve deserve the very best you have to offer. Achieving this level of professionalism is doable and necessary to build the loyal customers your business needs to be a great success.

Marcus Straub
Marcus Straub owns Life is Great! Inc. in Grand Junction. His personalized coaching and consulting services help individuals, business owners, executives and companies build teams, organizations and lives that are filled with happiness and success. He is the winner of the 2011 International Coach of the Year Award, and is also the author of “Is It Fun Being You?.” He is available for free consultations regarding coaching, speaking and trainings. Reach Straub by phone at 208-3150, by e-mail at marcus@lifeisgreatcoaching.com or on the website at www.lifeisgreatcoaching.com.
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This article was written for and published in collaboration with The Business Times newspaper.

Access the article here.