According to a new report by the Rockefeller Corporation, the main reason customers leave a company is because they do not feel that the company cares about them. This reason was chosen by 68% of the respondents. Surprisingly (or not, depending on your point of view) price and quality were not mentioned as reasons for changing companies.
In the professional services sector, the sector I’ve had over 15 years’ experience in, the ‘company doesn’t care’ reason for leaving a provider could score even higher. In this sector, people buy people. You only feel that a professional service provider cares about you if you know, like and trust (#klt in the twitter world) them. If you don’t know, like and trust the provider, you will not use their services for very long. As the report highlights, dropping your price won’t help you keep your clients in the long term if they don’t think you care about them.
LinkedIn provides us with an extremely efficient and effective way to connect with prospects and clients and show them we care. I’m not saying that LinkedIn can replace offline relationship building — I’m saying that it can turbo charge your existing marketing/business development strategy and therefore speed up the ‘know, like and trust’ process. The result? Increased revenues and more referrals.
Here’s some suggestions for building relationships via LinkedIn,
- Share your client’s LinkedIn profile with another LinkedIn contact. Use the ‘share’ button to send his/her profile to someone you think your client should meet. This shows you are not only interested in taking their money – you want to help them grow their business as well.
- Invite a client/prospect to attend an event they might find of interest. Locate the event through ‘Events’ (found in the ‘More’ menu) and then use the ‘share’ button to send the event details to them. It’s a great opportunity to suggest a meeting while at the event.
- Transform a cold call into a warm one. Locate a prospect in one of your LinkedIn Groups, contribute to their discussions and then follow up by emailing them via LinkedIn to suggest an offline meeting or telephone chat. Your online conversations will make that first offline conversation much warmer and effective.
What other ways have you used LinkedIn to show your customer you care?
Smashing Magazine article, Rockefeller report. http://bit.ly/qQdOFc