1. Communicate, Communicate and Communicate
Staying in touch with clients should be among the top priorities in the current time. We all are going through a time which is full of uncertainties – like when the freedom to move and mingle will come back to normal; how will the life be post COVID-19 pandemic; and so on. It is true, by communicating with customers the global uncertainty will not reduce. However, it will surely provide some sense of certainty and credibility around how your organization will reacts to it. As humans, we love predictability in times of uncertainties. Therefore, by communicating your will be able to establish trust in this time and for future.
It is best to have a sincere tone that is authentic, empathetic, and, perhaps most importantly, confident. People want leadership. People want to believe you, and they will only accept you if you’re sincere and feel you’re authentic and empathetic to their situation.
2. Find New Ways to Get in Touch
Customers are unable to visit you and you are unable to greet your customers as you used to do – even we are unable to meet our own teams and have in-person meetings. For personal use we have been extensively using apps and tools like Whatsapp, Skype, Facebook Messenger, etc. For businesses, these tools had not been used to their best potentials.
Yes, there are businesses where face-to-face meeting the clients is the only way business happens. Yet there are businesses which are altering their traditional ways of business. Depending on nature of business, in addition to using Whatsapp, Skype and Facebook Messenger, flexibly and agile businesses are using numerous tools to communicate with clients Zoom, Google Hangouts, Skype, Slack, Zoho and number of other tools are helping organizations to get in touch with their clients. For few individuals there can be huge learning curve to get comfortable with these tools. But Youtube is a massive resource to get over this hurdle.
3. Be Transparent, Empathetic and Authentic
Being open and honest with clients goes a long way. If you notice in your inbox, you may have received personalized emails from your bank, healthcare provider, or your supplier explaining what they have been doing to respond to the crisis. It shows their openness and honesty, and perhaps more importantly, they are not trying to hide or spin things. They may have acknowledged and explained how they have been trying to ensure possible functioning of business despite unprecedented challenges. This also shows how they care for you and their services for you.
Being humans we are all connected in one way or other. You can pick ideas from how your services providers are connecting with you. By picking ideas from best practices you can connect to your customers in transparent, empathetic and authentic ways. By using personalized emails, social media or having a dedicated web page on your website can keep you connected to your customers.
4. Take the Opportunity to Build a Long Term Relation
COVID-19 will have a long term effect on all of us and we all will have our stories to share with each other as we come out of these stressful moments. Many stories will be dreadful. Mainly those which will be beyond your control. However, the stories related to you and your business will be totally in your control. Your customers will remember how you treated them in this time.
Professor Daniel Kahneman who won the Nobel-Prize in Economics explains this phenomena with the Peak-End Rule, which says that an event is not judged by the entirety of an experience, but by prototypical moments (or snapshots) as a result of uncertain results. People have long memories when it comes to these things. The long and short of it is to think long term.
5. Be Proactive
People feel more confident when they know they are with someone who is aware of the present and also thinking ahead. Same applies to the relationship with your customers. Sharing possible solutions for the current time and being vigilant to the future will help you to win trust which you need most. Current situation is bad. It’s probably going to get worse before it gets better. However, what will come after this? If you can provide those answers, it will help build a relationship with your customers. There are numerous resources available online which provide great insights and fresh research.
You can use our ready survey templates or make a new survey to collect customers’ opinion.