Cultivating customer loyalty

Keeping a customer or client is a lot less expensive and easier than always searching for new ones. In the real estate profession, I have found customer loyalty to be extremely important; they call you when they want to sell, and they call you again when they want to buy. They also recommend you to their friends, family and other co-workers. Hardly a social event goes by that I don’t wind up talking to someone who could use my services, and I count on my loyal clients, customers and “people in the know” to recommend me. Never dismiss the advantages of  “word of mouth.”

There are some definitive marketing strategies to cultivate customer loyalty starting with making yourself or your business unique and appealing as well as relevant. Even though I work through a large company in Florida, clients and customers know me for my reliability, honesty and how I deliver what I promise. I show people through my work that their interests take priority over my own, and when I give my word, I am trustworthy.

To maintain customer loyalty you must know what customers want. Be resourceful, and be one step ahead of your competition. Clients expect you to be an expert in your field. As an example, if I am planning to show a customer six homes, I have already interviewed them to find out exactly what they are looking for – using a prepared list of “wants and desires” which now gives me a clear indication of  their needs. If I have lead time, I will have previewed each of the properties the client has expressed an interest, thus giving myself a head start as to the condition and appearance of the property. It all helps me to build that meaningful relationship with my clients; they feel important because I have taken the time to prepare for their meeting.

Never take it for granted that customers will keep coming back unless you provide the right services and those services satisfy the customer. You need to provide the service and wind up with a positive outcome. In my case of real estate sales, I either have to procure the sale of the home I have listed, or find the customer a home that they deem suitable. Customers only return when they have good outcomes;  otherwise they are out searching until your competition finds them.

Follow your project, service or sale until the very end, and then think outside the box and go beyond. People naturally have that “what have you done for me lately” attitude, so continuing the follow-up will constantly remind your customers that you have been there and will be there in the future.

photo credit: TheTruthAbout

One Response to “Cultivating customer loyalty”

  1. Joe said:

    Jul 01, 10 at 6:25 am

    One way to facilitate the ‘feel good’ factor and improve the customer experience is regular and relevant contact. As a relocation specialist, I often interact with realtors and truly value those that send me an text message or call about a new listing as soon as it comes in.