In his second guest post on our blog, Josh Brammer of Spinweb, talks about creating customer relationship.

Creating a customer relationship, one brick at a time

Creative work is fundamentally a process that involves a great deal of trust. Our clients invest time and money into trusting SpinWeb with their Company image. In turn, we have to manage this trust very carefully!

At SpinWeb, we spend a great deal of time creating and maintaining trust with our clients. As a company, SpinWeb provides creative services to assist our clients in their online strategy. A tricky part of our business is communicating with clients who ‘know what they want when they see it’ – this takes a great deal of trust to ensure success with our clients.

• Trust that we will deliver a great end-result.
• Trust that we will provide true value and not overcharge our clients.
• Trust that what we recommend will be the very best long-term solution.
• Trust that we will listen and hear what the client needs, even if they cannot articulate the need in words.

We want to take a moment and share our experience in developing these deep trusting relationships.

Building trust:

Picture a brick house. When building this house each brick is placed one-by-one, creating an interwoven system that together form the walls of the house. Over time the bricks and mortar solidify and create a very strong structure for years to come. Trust is like that house, made up of individual actions that are stacked on top of each, building strength over time.

The following are 8 Actions that build Trust with your clients:

  1. Talk to your customers. Be professional, yet engaging. Take time to treat each customer like the valuable person they are. Don’t talk down to clients or get frustrated if they don’t understand what you are explaining.
  2. Don’t rush. When you rush client interactions, it comes across as if your ‘real work’ is more important than time spent with the customer. Remember – Clients have work to do as well.
  3. Smile. Even if you don’t feel like it, learn to work with a smile. Watch out – you might even start enjoying your work!
  4. Make and keep promises. Your client has a choice who they spend money with. Make and keep little promises with your customers big dividends in customer satisfaction. Avoid over-promising but taking a moment to think before you make any promises that you can’t keep.
  5. Return every phone call / email. Clients need to know that you are available and are working to solve their problem. Even if your answer is “We are working on this” take the extra minute to let them know that you have things under control and you value their business.
  6. Apologize. Quickly apologize when you let people down. When this happens, and it will, quickly apologize and make the situation right. Never blame the customer when things go wrong – simply work together to make the situation right.
  7. Learn from each customer. Each customer interaction will give you a better idea of what is valuable about your  product or service. What is deeply important to your customers? Be quick to listen and learn how you can better serve your clients by providing what they need.
  8. Have fun. Customers can see the value difference between status-quo and excellence. By learning to enjoy your work, you will improve the quality of your products and services. Learning to have professional fun is an excellent way to add value to your customer service.

Each of the 8 Actions above is a very simple, real-life trust building tip that only takes one minute to put into
practice. Once the foundation is set and the walls are solid, it will take a great amount of force to tear down that
wall. This is how trust works – slowly built, slowly destroyed. In a true trust relationship, it will take multiple problems
to begin to break down the relationship. That’s why it is important to work towards deep trust relationships with your
customers

Over time, these simple actions will build upon each other and solidify the client relationship, transforming your
organization and ensuring that your customer service matches the excellence of your products and services.

Author: Josh Brammer

A process thinker, Josh Brammer helps knowledge workers balance work and family life through workflow and habit management. Josh Brammer is VP of Operations at SpinWeb and believes: Character + useful technology – distractions = saving time without becoming a robot.

In his spare time, Josh enjoys his family, good films, making outlines & creating more spare time. Josh shares a personality with Walt Disney & Ben Franklin (ENTP), which makes life much more interesting. If not behind a Mac, you’ll catch him reading or enjoying double espresso macchiatos. Contact Josh at josh@spinweb.net or 317-324-1100.