10 Ways To Build Relationships

Do you ever find a point where your business has tapered off and you are not sure where the next order, listing, client or deal is coming from? Many of these ideas are courtesy of www.customerloyalty.org and I appreciate their permission to publish the information.

Most of the time this can be attributed to not having a marketing plan with the ability to measure the success or failure of the various strategies you deploy. You don’t know how you got your business in the first place so you don’t know what to do to get back on track.

One way to “recession proof” your business is to incorporate Relationship Building Strategies into your business that you can deploy on a regular basis. After all, business is based on relationships so if you are not paying attention to this aspect of your business you are missing the “low hanging fruit”.

How do you build relationships? There are dozens of ways, but the top 10 in my opinion are:

  1. Handwritten Thank You Notes
  2. Remember birthdays
  3. Educate Your Clients
  4. Inspire & Motivate Them
  5. Share Your Talents & Resources
  6. Help Them By Referring Them to Others
  7. Invite Them To an Event
  8. Apologize and Clear Things Up
  9. Make a List Of People Important To Your Current And Future Success
  10. Identify Relationships That Are The Most Valuable To You

Following is a workshop you can go through for your own business to help you implement your new relationship building strategies.

1) Handwritten Thank You Notes

Send handwritten thank you cards to show people that you appreciate them. Handwriting them is a time‐tested method that creates a positive response when it’s sincere & genuine.

Workshop:
Write down the names of 5 people you’d like to thank today.
1. _____________________________
2. _____________________________
3. _____________________________
4. _____________________________
5. _____________________________

2) Remember birthdays
Remember birthdays ‐ because most people don’t. Birthdays are special to people. And if you care enough to remember their birthday… and give them a call or send a quick note, you go from being a business contact to being a personal friend.

Workshop:
Do you have your top client’s birthdays?
Call or email each one and ask them for their birthday. Add these dates into your calendar.
1. _____________________________
2. _____________________________
3. _____________________________
4. _____________________________
5. _____________________________

Do you have your employees birthdays? Ask each one for their birthday. Add these
dates into your calendar.
1. _____________________________
2. _____________________________
3. _____________________________
4. _____________________________
5. _____________________________

3) Educate Clients
The world is constantly changing … and it’s changing quickly. Give them useful information… and if you give them an insight that they end up using, they will remember you… and you’ll soon find yourself to be a trusted partner in their decision making.

Workshop
What do I know that others would love to know?
_____________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________

What do my contacts want to know? Can I go learn it and then share that info?
_____________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________

4) Inspire & Motivate Them
If you can find a way to inspire & motivate them, they will feel warm & fuzzy feelings for you. This tactic is one of the hardest ones to pull‐off because you have to have good timing & something interesting.

Workshop
How can I inspire & motivate my contacts?
1. _____________________________
2. _____________________________
3. _____________________________
4. _____________________________
5. _____________________________

5) Lend Your Talents & Resources
Offer your talents and resources to people who need it…without asking for anything in return. Sometimes helping someone move over 1 weekend from Point A to Point B can build a relationship that creates 10 or 20 sales over a few years. Be a friend and you’ll find more friends.

Workshop
Which talents or resources of mine could I put to work for my contacts?
1. _____________________________
2. _____________________________
3. _____________________________
4. _____________________________
5. _____________________________

6) Help Them By Referring Them to Others
One of the best ways to do this is to recommend them to people who need them. Another way is to help them look good in front of their boss by show how successful a project is. Help them look good in front of others.

Workshop
How can you help you clients look good to whoever they report to?
1. _____________________________
2. _____________________________
3. _____________________________
4. _____________________________
5. _____________________________

How can you help the key influencers in your market look good?
1. _____________________________
2. _____________________________
3. _____________________________
4. _____________________________
5. _____________________________

7) Invite Them To an Event
Whether it’s a baseball game, workshop, networking event or a business mixer these types of invites show that you are thinking of them…the time spent together invariably leads to strengthening the bond.

Workshop
What kinds of events both personal & business can you invite people to?
1. _____________________________
2. _____________________________
3. _____________________________
4. _____________________________
5. _____________________________

8) Apologize and Clear Things Up
Sometimes we mess up… we drop the ball… Often, it’s not as bad as you think it is. And if you messed up a while back, they probably don’t even remember why they were mad at you. This is a great way to win back lost clients.

Workshop
List down the names of people where you dropped the ball and messed up? Schedule
a time to call or visit that person and apologize… simply for the purpose of making them feel good.

Name Date To Call/Visit
1. _____________________________ _____________________
2. _____________________________ _____________________
3. _____________________________ _____________________
4. _____________________________ _____________________
5. _____________________________ _____________________

9) Make a List Of People Important To Your Current And Future Success
This helps you bring focus to developing the right network of friends before you need them… so if & when the time comes that you do need them, they’ll be more than happy to help you.

Workshop
Who is important to your current success? Name general categories such as ‘my employees’ or ‘local real estate agents’ or ‘CEOs of top 100 companies’ And then research those categories and write the names of the real people.

Category Name
1. _____________________________ _____________________
2. _____________________________ _____________________
3. _____________________________ _____________________
4. _____________________________ _____________________
5. _____________________________ _____________________

10) Identify Relationships That Are The Most Valuable To You
Allocate resources accordingly. The 80/20 rule definitely applies to your relationships… 80% of your success will be the result of 20% of your relationships. Indentify this 20% and treat them extremely well.

Workshop
Who are my best & most profitable customers? Who are people who refer me the most?
1. _____________________________ 1. _____________________________
2. _____________________________ 2. _____________________________
3. _____________________________ 3. _____________________________
4. _____________________________ 4. _____________________________
5. _____________________________ 5. _____________________________

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One Comment Add yours

  1. Sonya says:

    Great post. Thanks.

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