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101 Ways to Build Better Relationships with Your Customers

Book Description

Building better customer relationships is not just something that would be nice to do – it is something you must do if you expect to be successful in business today. This book contains 101 useful suggestions for maintaining and building relationships with your customers – starting with the next contact you make. The 101 ways in this book are all about people and how they react or respond to others. Most of the ways deal with common courtesies that anyone would appreciate – for example, keep the customer in the communications loop, don't put customers on hold, be accessible to the customer and do what you say you will. All of the ways boil down to good, common sense. Each of the 101 ways comes with a brief exercise designed to help you teach and reinforce the learning points presented. Use this book to develop training programs to deal with difficult situations, solve problems with your customers, create more effective customer service strategies and help reach your sales and marketing goals.

Table of Contents

  1. Title
  2. Copyright
  3. Table of Contents
  4. Introduction
    1. Getting to Know Your Customer
    2. Universal in Nature
    3. You Are Responsible
    4. How to Use This Book
  5. Part 1: Customer Expectations
    1. 1. Try as Hard to Keep the Customer’s Business as You Did to Get it in the First Place
    2. 2. Keep Your Promises
    3. 3. Follow up with the Customer
    4. 4. Avoid Selling Tactics
    5. 5. Send the Customer Thank-you Letters
    6. 6. Don’t Take Credit That’s Not Yours
    7. 7. Help Make the Customer Feel Good About the Purchase
    8. 8. Think Outside the Box
    9. 9. Pay Attention to Details
    10. 10. Close Loops
    11. 11. Don’t Have Hidden Agendas
    12. 12. Keep Internal Problems from the Customer
    13. 13. Value Your Relationship with the Customer
    14. 14. Don’t Cry “Wolf” to the Customer
    15. 15. Give the Customer Reasons to Brag About You
    16. 16. Expect Less from the Customer
    17. 17. Don’t Expect the Customer to Do Your Homework
    18. 18. Be Accessible to the Customer
    19. 19. Be Responsive
    20. 20. Be Responsible
    21. 21. Exercise Flexibility
    22. 22. Be Reliable
    23. 23. Lose Graciously
    24. 24. Don’t Over Commit
    25. 25. Do What You Say You Will Do
    26. 26. Don’t Oversell
  6. Part 2: Problem Solving Together
    1. 27. Put Things into Perspective for the Customer
    2. 28. Reduce Paperwork for the Customer
    3. 29. Be a Contingency Thinker
    4. 30. Be Creative
    5. 31. Don’t Follow the 80/20 Rule with the Customer
    6. 32. Be Proactive
    7. 33. Prevent Problems Before They Occur
    8. 34. Do Things Right the First Time
    9. 35. Help Reduce Cycle Time for the Customer
    10. 36. Synergize with the Customer
    11. 37. Reduce Your Company’s Bureaucracy
    12. 38. Bend the Rules for the Customer
    13. 39. Be a Problem Solver
    14. 40. Refer the Customer to Other Sources
    15. 41. Look for Other Possibilities
    16. 42. Roll with the Punches
  7. Part 3: Communicating with the Customer
    1. 43. Learn the Customer’s Language
    2. 44. Keep the Customer in Your Company’s Communications Loop
    3. 45. Have the Top Executives in Your Company Meet the Customer
    4. 46. Don’t Fill the Customer’s Voice Mail–Box with Messages
    5. 47. Don’t Call the Customer on Their First Day Back from Vacation
    6. 48. Don’t Put the Customer On Hold
    7. 49. Get on the Customer’s Mailing List
    8. 50. Keep Confidential Information Confidential
    9. 51. Really Listen to the Customer
    10. 52. Always Be a Page Away
    11. 53. Be Computer Compatible
    12. 54. Be a “Safe Ear” for the Customer
    13. 55. Give Feedback to the Customer
    14. 56. Don’t Spread Rumors About the Customer
    15. 57. Don’t Let the Customer See You Sweat
    16. 58. Admit Your Mistakes
    17. 59. Don’t Burden the Customer with Your Problems
    18. 60. Don’t B.S. the Customer
    19. 61. Keep Good Records
    20. 62. Don’t Become a Nuisance to the Customer
    21. 63. Understand When “No” Means “No”
    22. 64. Link Electronically to the Customer
  8. Part 4: Understanding the Customer
    1. 65. Be a “Constant” During Change
    2. 66. Read the Customer’s Annual Report
    3. 67. Study the Customer’s History
    4. 68. Ask the Customer if it is a Good Time to Call
    5. 69. Take the Customer to Lunch
    6. 70. Keep the Customer’s Priorities in Mind
    7. 71. Stay “In Tune” with the Customer’s Business
    8. 72. Empathize with the Customer
    9. 73. Feel the Customer’s Pain
    10. 74. Understand the Customer’s Requirements
    11. 75. Consider the Customer’s Perspective
    12. 76. Anticipate the Customer’s Needs
  9. Part 5: Supporting the Customer
    1. 77. Give the Customer the Benefit of the Doubt
    2. 78. Avoid Conflicts of Interest
    3. 79. Keep the Customer’s Logo in Your Computer
    4. 80. Talk Nicely About the Customer
    5. 81. Join the Customer’s Team
    6. 82. Collaborate with the Customer
    7. 83. Help the Customer Accept Change
    8. 84. Play a Supportive Role for the Customer
    9. 85. Treat the Customer Like a Friend
    10. 86. Don’t Take Unfair Advantage
    11. 87. Become a Resource to the Customer
    12. 88. Think Win/Win with the Customer
    13. 89. Be a Team Player
    14. 90. Think Long-term Relationships
    15. 91. Don’t Waste the Customer’s Time
    16. 92. Act Like a Business Partner
  10. Part 6: Achieving Results
    1. 93. Deliver on Your Deliverables
    2. 94. Sell with Class
    3. 95. Share Awards with the Customer
    4. 96. Don’t Depend on the Customer’s Loyalty
    5. 97. Help the Customer Reduce Costs
    6. 98. Focus on Beating the Customer’s Competition
    7. 99. Focus on Getting the Customer Results
    8. 100. Look for Ways to Add Value to the Customer
    9. 101. Search for Ways to Improve Your Service or Product