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“Customer relationship management strategy”

CX is the new trend and with competition for services at an all-time high creating a customer relationship management strategy is imperative for your business. We look at customer satisfaction and client retention.

In a recent article by Forbes they highlighted that 2016 is the “year of the customer” and their 1st point is that “customers are smarter than ever”. With the South African business landscape feeling the pinch putting your customer first is a non-negotiable.

The age old adage of “the customer is always right” is no longer enough to survive in business. To be successful you need to look at turning customers into clients. To survive you must look at your business holistically. This means taking an in-depth view into these 5 key steps in your customer / client journey;

  1. Your onboarding process
  2. Customer experience strategy
  3. Customer service strategy
  4. Client retention strategy
  5. Customer loyalty programs

We take a closer look at creating an effective customer relationship management strategy for your business ensuring that your business can turn customers into clients.


  1. Onboarding process

First impressions last. When creating your onboarding program, you need to look at your onboarding process flow.

For your business to grow you will continually need to onboard new customers and this experience sets the precedent on what to expect from the relationship moving forward. If you get this step wrong you may find your potential client never doing business with you at all.

Create and document your onboarding experience, make these your rules of engagement, the basis of your customer relationship management strategy. Remember to take a deep look at and ask;

  • Your brand image. How do I want potential customers to see my brand?
  • The experience. How do I want my potential customer to feel when interacting with my business?
  • Onboarding pack. What documentation will assist my customer through the process?
  • How will I and how often will I effectively communicate with my customer?


  1. Customer experience strategy

Know your customer. When drawing up this strategy it is important to ask yourself “what is customer satisfaction?” Understanding expectations as well as your ability deliver on those expectations is key to business survival.

CX is your USP. It is what differentiates you from your competitors and ultimately this experience is what turns customers into loyal clients.

Every business can learn from their clients and customers. Rather than guessing or assuming your experience is world class. Think about asking for honest feedback. Send a survey to long time clients, new customers after onboarding as well as lost clients to better understand how you can improve as a business.

Try these 5 customer satisfaction survey questions. Remember time is money, so keep your survey short and to the point (no more than 10) and say thank you even if you don’t like the honest feedback;

  1. What 1st attracted you to [Company Name]?
  2. Please rate your experience with us [1 poor and 4 excellent]
  3. Please provide reasons for the above rating.
  4. How would you describe us to a friend or colleague?
  5. What can we do to improve or exceed your expectations?


  1. Customer service strategy

Remember that a customer / client’s experience directly affects their perception of service level delivery. To remain relevant in a competitive environment you may want to check the actual perception of your services or even look to extend your service offering.

Before you look to invest in expanding your services, ask your client’s what they would like from you. In our downloadable customer satisfaction survey template we have included 5 key questions to ask regarding your services, namely;

  1. If you could no longer use our services, what would you miss most?
  2. Which of our services are you currently using?
  3. What are your biggest challenges in your business right now?
  4. Are you happy with our services and why?
  5. If we could offer you one more service, what would you want it to be?


  1. Client retention strategy

Your most valuable customer is a client. Retaining a client and having longevity in a business relationship takes less investment in terms of $ than onboarding a customer. Investing in a retention strategy will be the best thing that you can do for your business.

It takes 12 positives to rectify 1 complaint / lost customer. Customer retention strategies are key to ensuring that customers become clients and that those clients become brand advocates. See our testimonials from our valued clients.

Nothing sells your business better than word of mouth from real people.


  1. Customer loyalty programs

For those customers who have become your loyal clients, what better way to say thank you for taking this journey with us than a customer loyalty program.

Make your loyalty program unique to your business. Think outside of the box.

If you have followed the 5 key steps to growing your business relationships and you know your customer and the expectations that they have, creating customer loyalty programs will be a breeze.