Creating Customer Evangelists

Having a customer who comes back to you time and time again is great. But even better are those customers who tell their friends, write positive reviews, and blog about your company. How do you create that kind of passion? Creating loyal customer advocates comes down to six factors.

1. Be good at what you do. It’s a basic premise, but it’s impossible to create loyalty without this.

2. Be honest. Make sure that you’re fulfilling your promises and are giving people a fair value for what they are paying you. Customers have to feel that you are trustworthy and looking out for their best interests.

3. Recognize your customers as individuals. People don’t want to be treated like a number; they want to feel as if you actually see them for who they are.

4. Be proactive. Giving your customers what they need now is great, but expecting and preparing for what they will need brings you to the next level. You have the opportunity to become their trusted adviser on how to improve their business or their life.

5. Try to understand the challenges your customers face. Figure out how you can help to make their lives easier.

6. Create chemistry between yourself and your customers. This can be an elusive factor, but it is undeniably important in which business it is that people connect with and choose to continue patronizing.

Pay attention to your relationships with customers. You may think you have a loyal clientele, but in reality, most companies vastly overestimate the loyalty of their customers. Don’t forget, customer satisfaction is not the same as customer loyalty. Satisfied customers don’t complain, but they don’t necessarily tell their friends about you either.

Jim Kane Senior Fellow The Brookeside Group Philadelphia

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal.