By Rachel Kerstetter, PR Architect, Sonnhalter
Sonnhalter has used several services for a very long time… as in decades. I’m not sure how we started working with these services, but I had to assume there was a reason.
However when I took over the contracts with these services, no one seemed eager to provide the most important service of all… customer service. Coming into my new role, I wanted to understand our various contracts so I reached out to the most recent person assigned to us. No answer. I reached out to the company referencing our account number. No answer.
I attended a conference and visited the service provider’s table, and immediately got attention because they thought I was a new customer. The sales person apologized up and down and said our rep would be in contact with me. He was able to look up answers to some of my questions. More than a week after the conference, I had no contact.
When it comes to your customers, it’s crucial not to become lazy. Don’t expect your relationship to maintain itself just because you’ve been with them for years. Don’t focus all of your time and attention trying to win new business that you forget your current business.
As I learned in Marketing 101 in college, it’s cheaper to maintain an existing customer relationship than to build a new one.
When you ignore, forget or don’t serve your current customers the way that you should, you are in danger of losing them.
At the conference I met with several competing service providers who would be happy to have me as a customer, what makes our current providers think we’ll stick with them if there’s someone else who isn’t lazy?
In your personal life, if you were to call your mechanic for general maintenance on your car and they never called you back to schedule an appointment, you’d probably consider finding a new mechanic, right? It’s the same in the business-to-business world.
Your customers want to be valued, whether they’ve been working with you 5 days or 50 years.