Relationship marketing - Wikipedia
Relationship marketing is about forming long-term relationships with customers. Rather than trying to encourage a one-time sale, relationship marketing tries to. This article and expertise was originally published on The Ambassador Blog. You may have heard the term “relationship marketing” being tossed around. Relationship marketing is a facet of customer relationship management (CRM) that focuses on customer loyalty and long-term customer.
The legacy of this can still be seen in the traditional four P's of the marketing mix. Pricingproduct managementpromotionand placement. According to Gordonthe marketing mix approach is too limited to provide a usable framework for assessing and developing customer relationships in many industries and should be replaced by the relationship marketing alternative model where the focus is on customers, relationships and interaction over time, rather than markets and products.
In contrast, relationship marketing is cross-functional marketing. It is organized around processes that involve all aspects of the organization.
In fact, some commentators prefer to call relationship marketing "relationship management" in recognition of the fact that it involves much more than that which is normally included in marketing. Because of its broad scope, relationship marketing can be effective in many contexts. As well as being relevant to 'for profit' businesses, research indicates that relationship marketing can be useful for organizations in the voluntary sector  and also in the public sector.
Satisfaction[ edit ] Relationship marketing relies upon the communication and acquisition of consumer requirements solely from existing customers in a mutually beneficial exchange usually involving permission for contact by the customer through an " opt-in " system.
Although groups targeted through relationship marketing may be large, accuracy of communication and overall relevancy to the customer remains higher than that of direct marketing, but has less potential for generating new leads than direct marketing and is limited to Viral marketing for the acquisition of further customers.
Research by John Fleming and Jim Asplund indicates that engaged customers generate 1. According to Buchanan and Gilles,  the increased profitability associated with customer retention efforts occurs because of several factors that occur once a relationship has been established with a customer.
The cost of acquisition occurs only at the beginning of a relationship, so the longer the relationship, the lower the amortized cost. Account maintenance costs decline as a percentage of total costs or as a percentage of revenue.
Long-term customers tend to be less inclined to switch, and also tend to be less price sensitive. This can result in stable unit sales volume and increases in dollar-sales volume. Long-term customers may initiate free word of mouth promotions and referrals.
Long-term customers are more likely to purchase ancillary products and high margin supplemental products. Customers that stay with you tend to be satisfied with the relationship and are less likely to switch to competitors, making it difficult for competitors to enter the market or gain market share. Regular customers tend to be less expensive to service because they are familiar with the process, require less "education", and are consistent in their order placement.
Increased customer retention and loyalty makes the employees' jobs easier and more satisfying. In turn, happy employees feed back into better customer satisfaction in a virtuous circle. Relationship marketers speak of the "relationship ladder of customer loyalty ". It groups types of customers according to their level of loyalty. The ladder's first rung consists of "prospects", that is, people that have not purchased yet but are likely to in the future.
This is followed by the successive rungs of "customer", "client", "supporter", "advocate", and "partner".
What Is Relationship Marketing and How Can It Help Your Brand? | AltusHost
The relationship marketer's objective is to "help" customers get as high up the ladder as possible. This usually involves providing more personalized service and providing service quality that exceeds expectations at each step. Customer retention efforts involve considerations such as the following: Customer valuation — Gordon describes how to value customers and categorize them according to their financial and strategic value so that companies can decide where to invest for deeper relationships and which relationships need to be served differently or even terminated.
Customer retention measurement — Dawkins and Reichheld calculated a company's "customer retention rate". This is simply the percentage of customers at the beginning of the year that are still customers by the end of the year. This ratio can be used to make comparisons between products, between market segments, and over time.
Determine reasons for defection — Look for the root causes, not mere symptoms. This involves probing for details when talking to former customers.
Other techniques include the analysis of customers' complaints and competitive benchmarking see competitor analysis. Develop and implement a corrective plan — This could involve actions to improve employee practices, using benchmarking to determine best corrective practices, visible endorsement of top management, adjustments to the company's reward and recognition systems, and the use of "recovery teams" to eliminate the causes of defections.
A technique to calculate the value to a firm of a sustained customer relationship has been developed.
However, as business owners, this means that we MUST go that extra mile to consistently create our know, like and trust factor. To do this, it is important that we are consistently active on our social media platforms, website, and offline networking.
Ask a fellow entrepreneur to look at your social media postings and rate them for content, connection and consistency. The feedback can help you take your Know Like Trust Factor to a whole new level!
Word of Mouth Referrals When it comes to owning your own business, word of mouth referrals are gold. This is key to remember because customers rarely purchase products or services solely based on the products intended result. The answer includes all of the feelings and desires that come with that product and the results. By building your relationship marketing skills, you fulfill those additional needs.
You provide more than just a product or service, you provide an experience. Many customers leave a company not because they didn't like the product, but because they were frustrated with the customer service.
If a business streamlines its internal operations to satisfy all service needs of their customers, customers will be happier even in the face of product problems. Technology also plays an important role in relationship marketing.
The Internet has made it easier for companies to track, store, analyze and then utilize vast amounts of information about customers. Customers are offered personalized ads, special deals, and expedited service as a token of appreciation for their loyalty. Social media sites allow business to engage their customers in an informal and ongoing way.
In the past, it would have been impossible to keep useful records about every single client, but technology makes it easy for companies to automate their marketing efforts.
See also Analytical Marketing Branding is the final component of relationship marketing.
What Is Relationship Marketing and How Can It Help Your Brand?
A company can form a long-term relationship with a client if that client feels like the brand they purchase reflects who they are or who they want to be. Customers are less inclined to switch to a different brand if they think that switch makes a statement about their identity.
Who Employs Relationship Marketing? Many types of companies have something to gain from developing long-term relationships with their customers. Smaller businesses often serve a steady stream of regulars, and make little effort to draw in new customers.
Imagine a small restaurant that sees a steady stream of business from the morning commute. Their daily presence is a large part of the business that restaurant does every day.
Larger companies typically invest the most in carrying out sophisticated relationship marketing campaigns. In some major companies, relationship marketing is a strategy that affects every department with a client facing purpose sales, customer service, shipping etc.
Industry leaders constantly face competition from new companies who claim to provide similar goods with a higher-quality level of service. Holding onto their existing customers is the only way they can maintain their position at the top of their industry.
This is true for businesses in all industries, from cell phones to baby food. When the company changed the font in their ubiquitous catalog, Ikea lovers took to the Internet to air their complaints. Rather than alienate their customers for a trivial reason, Ikea changed the font back in the next catalog.
Direct Recruitment — The direct mail marketing firm sends out handwritten birthday cards to clients and associates every year. This simple, personal touch helps clients feel like Direct Recruitment cares about them as people rather than simply consumers. American Airlines — The airline maintains a comprehensive frequent flyer program that rewards customer loyalty with the promise of free flights, upgrades, and discounts.