If marketing is your field of business, working through a virtual platform is definitely the way to go these days. It’s optimal and versatile, and allows for (virtually) limitless expansion. However, getting all your work done on a screen can also lead to a sense of depersonalization when it comes to customer relations. If you’ve never personally met your customers, everything you know about them is based on data viewed on your screen. It’s important to realize that customers are living, breathing entities that are just as alive as you are. Treating them as such will lead to a gradual growth in your customer base, and will instill a sense of community in your marketing. According to Forbes contributor AJ Agrawi, “What a lot of marketers fail to grasp is that customers don’t want to be seen as a nameless face. They want to be acknowledged as unique human beings. This is relatively easy to do because all you have to do is indulge in some personalization.”
Give Your Customers The Respect They Deserve
Kimanzi Constable from Entrepreneur writes, “A big mistake entrepreneurs make is treating potential leads like they’re a number or dollar sign… People can tell what’s real and what’s fake.” Although business is what links you to your customer, it’s important to keep in mind that people spend more time as human individuals than they do as business opportunities. If you treat people with genuine respect, they’ll feel like they’re valued, and they’ll be glad to take their business to you rather than a marketer who treats them like nothing but an email address.
Be Mindful Of How You Approach Them
Adopting an aggressive promotional method can be beneficial if done strategically. But coming on too strong is never good, and customers can recognize that from a mile away. According to Constable, “People are repelled from the entrepreneur who comes on with constant promotion. There has to be a balance between delivering free value and selling.” The bane of every email marketer’s business image is being labeled as a spammer. “If you come off as the spammy marketer,” Constable writes, “your emails will be sent to the junk folder.”
Your Customers Need Space
Nothing ruins a promising business relationship like pestering the customer. “Customers don’t want to be bombarded by promotional emails every day,” Agrawi says. “Give them a break and don’t make them feel like you’re harassing them.” Agrawal goes on to explain that it’s best to establish a schedule that revolves around a customer’s specific needs. You’ll be able to gauge what your customer is looking for based on their feedback, so it’s important to be consistently attentive. If you and your customer have established a clear understanding that they would only receive a certain amount of emails, it’s important not to exceed that number. Agrawal also suggests that your welcome e-mail can include a small form helping customers decide how frequently they expect you to reach out to them.
Be Attentive To Feedback
The key to developing good customer relations is consistent attentiveness. Every person is entirely unique and should be treated that way. “Rather than sending out the same emails to everyone,” Agrawi notes, “use the feedback you’re getting to segment your email list. That way you can make sure customers feel like you’re reading their minds.” When a subscriber feels like they’re being personally catered to, they’ll be far more open to the idea of maintaining your business relationship in the future. See past the words and images on your screen, and keep in mind that your virtual customer is a distinct individual. Just like you!