Relationship Marketing: Part 2


Where is your favorite place to get coffee?

This might seem trivial but stick with me. Where do you like to get drinks? How about lunch?

I can bet, that if you evaluated your favorite watering hole you would find some common elements. They provide a good service. Excellent coffee. How about whether they greet you? Do they know your name?

The places I frequent have something in common: they care about me. It might be in some trivial way, it might just be the fact that they remember my order. But the point is, what separates two equal services, (or even elevates the inferior service above the superior one) is the connection I have with those people.

We’re all drawn to shows like Cheers or Community for various reasons. But, I think one of the most important reasons is due to the connections the characters have. It doesn’t matter what the setting is. The revolving plot of wild antics or drama the characters get in don’t matter. If the characters don’t have a relationship with each other there wouldn’t be anything to watch. It would be like watching androids shuffle about on their predetermined paths. We all yearn for that human connection we see around us, whether in person or in the movies and TV shows we love.

Relationship Marketing is the same. If you can’t connect with your audience in some meaningful way, then you’re just another commodity in an ocean of options. We always talk about word of mouth as the most powerful tool for businesses; the reason for this is because of the relationship we have. When we get a recommendation from someone we know and trust, we transfer the trust we feel from them to the person they are recommending. The relationship is key and it paves the way for a successful business.

The question I wrestle with often is how can I connect with my clients better and earn their trust?

The answer?


Everyone is being chased with advertisements constantly. They don’t want to talk to anyone in person because they anticipate the “Car Salesman” approach. Let’s say you’re in a store looking for a television. You’re pretty sure the salesperson is going to point you at the biggest tv, and though you don’t know for sure, you suspect there’s some sort of bonus if they sell enough of them. However, instead of them laying into you to spend the most money they can get, they start asking you questions.

What size of space do you have? Do you have kids? What kind of devices are you going to connect to it? What’s your budget?

Then they set you up with a large, yet not outrageous in size, flat screen with built-in smart features, and they suggest a wall mount to keep it out of reach of the little ones. They shifted before your very eyes from salesperson to partner. They had your very best interest in mind.

If we don’t ask questions and validate the person in front of us, physically or digitally, we can never lay the foundation a relationship will be built on. The best part, if something goes wrong and you have a relationship established, they are more likely to come back to you instead of swearing off your business or storming through the doors in a rage. They know you care, and you’re there to support them. 


Care about your clients?

Ask questions to diagnose the need?

Remember their name?

These are the things that will set you apart from your competition, even if they have a bigger budget, better product, or flashier graphics. Next week we’re digging into some of the benefits of Relationship Marketing.

See you then! If you missed Relationship Marketing Part One you can read it here.