Building Customer Relationships with the Constant Contact Cycle
Every once in a while, someone visits your web site or walks through your door and instantly falls in love with your products or services. Unfortunately, a lot of small business owners I talk to are trying to survive solely on the small numbers of these “love at first sight” customers. They don’t understand how to attract customers from the largest pool of prospective customers—namely the aware but not yet convinced, the skeptics, the comparison shoppers, the indecisive, and the forgetful.
Building a business requires you to convert all kinds of people with all kinds of attitudes into customers and keep them for the long term. That happens when you learn how to build solid customer relationships.
Relationships don’t happen overnight; they are built over time. In fact, they typically go through four stages of development. We call these stages the Constant Contact Cycle, shown in Figure 2.1
. Maximizing each stage in the cycle is critical to your email marketing.
STAGE ONE—ACQUIRE: THE BEGINNINGS OF A NEW CUSTOMER
Married couples (at least happily married couples) and other people in great relationships like to be asked, “Where did you two meet?” Similarly, you should ask every new prospective customer: “How did you find out about us?”
Before you can start building a high ...