Relationship marketing is about developing long-term (enduring) and mutually beneficial relationships with your customers. It goes beyond Customer Relationship Management( CRM ) in that it deals with the whole gamut of the business starting from the employees, suppliers, agents, distributors, dealers, retailers and to the financial partners like owners, investors and analysts. All of these are parts adding up to the whole. If the company wants the whole to benefit, it has to have mutually satisfying relationships with the parts.
Beyond creating short-term transactions, marketers need to build long-term relationships with these valued partners. In order to develop a strong relationship with them, the company should know their needs, goals, desires and capabilities. Companies would want to build strong economic and social ties by consistently delivering high-quality products, good service, and the right prices. The final outcome of relationship marketing is a unique company asset called a marketing network comprising employees, customers, distributors, agents, suppliers, shareholders and investors. Thus relationship marketing with all the above partners results in wealth creation and prosperity for all.
In Relationship Marketing, All Are Customers To Each Other
If the suppliers of raw materials are not satisfied, you may not get the desired quality of the raw materials and thus your end product that rolls out of your factories will not be of a quality that delights the customers. If the employees of the company are not motivated enough, it would reflect in the performance of the company. So employees have to be appreciated for their good work and a system of rewards put in place for exemplary performance and for achieving their targets. If the investors do not get a fair return on their investment, they wouldn’t like to invest further in the company. So they have to be taken under confidence and should be told, for example, about the cyclical or seasonal variation of returns or about the life cycle stage the product is at. If the distributors, agents and retailers do not get a quality product at their level of pricing, they wouldn’t be able to push the product in the market or the product shall not be able to pull in the customers. So, these partners have to be appreciated and motivated with volume discounts and, wherever possible , by sharing in their regional advertising & promotional budgets.
Beyond offering consistently high value and satisfaction to the customers, marketers can use a number of relevant marketing tools to develop stronger bonds with customers. First, a company might build value and satisfaction by adding financial benefits to the customer relationship. For example, airlines offer frequent-flyer programs and hotels give room upgrades to their frequent guests. The company should also work to increase its social bonding with customers by learning individual customers’ needs and wants and then personalizing its products and services.
What Is The Latest In Relationship Marketing ?
Companies are making distinctive offers and services for individual customers based on their demographics, psychographics, past transactions and media & distribution preferences. Thus they are able to get a large share of each customer’s expenditures by building high customer loyalty. They estimate a customer’s lifetime value and then design their offerings and prices to earn profits over a customer’s lifetime ( Philip Kotler).