Loyalty to Your Business

“I learned from Mr. Wrigley, early in my career, that loyalty wins and it builds friendships.
I saw it work for him in his business.”
Ernie Banks

Loyalty to Your Employees

In yesterday’s post, we talked about building employee loyalty.  We emphasized investing in them, building relationships with them, focusing on growth,  focusing on giving loyalty, focus on empowerment.  When we focus on what we give to the employee of today then most will give loyalty in return for however long they are with us.  Some won’t, no matter what we do.  That’s the risk we take.

Loyalty to Your Customers

loyaltyHow is it any different with our customers?  We HOPE to build customers for life.  The reality is that most will leave us at one point or another for a variety of reasons.  Some may abandon us for the lowest bidder.  Some because what we provide is no longer necessary for them; they have outgrown us or simply no longer need what we offer.  That said, building customer loyalty is still possible and could be boiled down to this simple statement:

Treat your customers like you treat your employees.

The same things we focused on to build employee loyalty make a difference to your customers as well.

  • Customers are interested in doing business with people they believe care for them, can help them, and can be trusted.  They more than a product from you, they want a relationship.  Treating your customers as your friends takes the relationship beyond the exchange of goods and services into something more meaningful, effective, and profitable.  If your thought is “well I wouldn’t want to be friends with my customers!” then you either need to change customers or (most likely) change YOU.
  • Customers want to be treated with respect and regard.  They, like employees, want to feel that they are important.  That their contribution counts.  That they make a difference in your life.
  • Customers want you to help them grow.  Whether you help them grow their business, grow their profits, or grow them; customers want what you provide them to add value beyond the product or service they purchased.  They are looking for you to look out for them and help move them closer to their goals.
  • Customer are looking to be empowered by you.  It makes anyone uncomfortable to feel totally dependent on someone else.  It makes them feel helpless.  If you teach them to develop enough knowledge and ability to make intelligent decisions and provide input, you make them feel in control and loyalty will develop as a result.  My family doctor has worked with me enough to where I can ask intelligent questions.  He welcomes my questions and input.  We make treatment decisions together.  He makes me feel in control of my healthcare.  That’s why he is still my family doctor for 15 years.

Your Actions

  1. How many of your customers would consider you to be their friend?  How would they define that?
  2. Think of your best customers.  What can you do TODAY to show appreciation?
  3. How can your empower your best customers to deepen your relationship?