Tales from the Customer is an ongoing series of discussions on the virtues of good customer relationship management. For more tales, click here.
The werewolf/Wolfman tale is one of legends. It goes well beyond modern story ideas and takes us back to a simpler time when fear of these kinds of creatures was more real than the air they breathed.
While I could go into all the ways you might be compelled to transform into a vicious monster by the light of the full moon (or because of a difficult customer), I want to take this one from a different angle.
The Wolfman is famous for his one weakness: the silver bullet. It’s the one thing you can use to kill him.
So the question then becomes: What’s your silver bullet for achieving success in customer relationships?
Finding Your Silver Bullet in Customer Relationships
Everyone has a weakness. I’m of course referring to the pressure point that makes the difference between a cold lead and a committed customer. What can you do that will shift the decision in your favor?
Unfortunately, I don’t have the answer. That’s because every company is different, every environment is unique, and every industry is special.
Not only that, but silver bullet techniques can and will vary between customers. Just as every company is unique, each customer has their own set of expectations, their own history, their own pocketbook.
Even so, it isn’t all a crapshoot. There are ways to find out what your silver bullet might be; you just have to test, test, and test some more.
Forging Your Silver Bullet
In order to find the best strategy, you have to test all kinds of sequences, phrases, offers, and techniques. Sit down with your sales team and brainstorm some ideas. Look online for some different methods you can use to engage new leads and stale customers. Write them down.
Once you have a good list of ideas, you’re ready to put them to the test. Now, here’s where a CRM can come in handy (it is for building customer relationships, after all.) You can use your CRM to help you track which strategies work the best.
Using custom fields, you can create a field for “Close Strategy,” or something similar. Then, during every interaction with a new lead or customer, have the list of ideas in front of you and try to determine which one fits the right circumstance and person.
If it doesn’t hit the spot, try something else the next time. If you do, however, end up closing them, record that close strategy in the custom field for that contact.
By faithfully updating the data on each contact in your CRM, you’ll be able to create live reports that will show you your close rate for each close strategy you attempted.
Find out which ones give you the highest close rate and concentrate your efforts on those. Those will be your silver bullets for improving your customer relationship management.
Knowing what those silver bullets are will give you higher close rates, leading to more customers without dramatic increases in leads. It’s a win-win for just a little bit of testing and analysis.