A 5 Step Guide to Retaining Clients in a B2B Environment. nlighten are client experience specialists in the B2B space, and over the years of research conducted, both globally and locally, a key theme emerges: “value adding”, proactivity and innovation are the lowest scoring drivers in overall client satisfaction.
The ability to add value to a client’s business is the ultimate game-changing factor when it comes to customer satisfaction and directly impacts client loyalty.
Companies that are serious about client retention need to be perceived by their clients as a company that not only delivers a product/service in accordance with the SLA, but who also genuinely understands their client’s needs and adds real value to their client’s overall business. Partners that demonstrate innovation and proactivity are perceived to be invaluable.
Every company should have razor-sharp clarity as to exactly HOW its product or service adds value to the client’s world. Only then will the delivery be seamless and therefore, satisfactory.
As a B2B environment, the following 5 steps should be practiced in order to achieve client satisfaction:
1) Articulate the WHAT
If you are able to identify exactly what it is that hits the “sweet spot” with your client, your business relationship is bound to continue to flourish.
2) Spell out the HOW
As a leader, one must literally spell out the common mission of adding value in detail. Your team, staff members or colleagues all need to be on the same page with regards to the intrinsic understanding of this mission in order for them to grasp exactly what your value proposition is, and HOW this value is delivered to the clients.
This is the one most imperative point that every business needs to have fully figured out to achieve client satisfaction because this mission is to filter through into every aspect of the business creating unison, placing all departments on the same page, driving the same message to reach a mutual goal.
3) Consistent Communication
Touching base could be the difference between meeting expectations and exceeding expectations. Regular interactions with your clients, on all levels of the decision-making chain, are necessary to ensure that they too understand how it is that you are adding value to them. Sometimes, clients need to be made aware and reminded of the initial objectives that were set out and they need to be shown how these objectives were met. Regular meetings are important for “health checks” and need to be documented as well in order to be able to report back to your client.
4) Ask Your Clients: “Do We Add Value?”
As an added quality check, it is incredibly beneficial to source an external, third party independent (like nlighten) to create an objective audit on what your clients are thinking and feeling. This feedback research should be done annually or bi-annually and is something that will not only benefit your business in the long run through knowing what to improve on, but it will also impress your client, showing initiative and making them feel important as they are an integral part of developing your business.
5) Close The Feedback Loop!
It is essential to then update the client on the insights you have gained through the feedback process and letting them know what changes are going to be made due to their vital contribution. Clients enjoy feeling like they are a part of the solution, so always remember to tell them about what action plans are being put into place to ensure innovation and continuous relevance to the client through being proactive and ultimately, adding value to their businesses.
nlighten. enhancing customer experience – www.nlighten.co.za