Will Relationships With Customers Change?

What have you learned from the pandemic about selling your products and working with your customers?

It wasn’t that long ago that people said, “Here in Asia, you have to go see your customer in person; they don’t want a phone call, or even a video call.” Well, circumstances have changed that. So, has the lack of in-person meetings damaged your customer relationship? If not, then you should consider working with your customers to balance between in-person and virtual connections, rather than having to meet in-person all the time. The real estate industry has continued to sell homes, often using a “virtual open house,” leading people to buy homes they have not even visited. Can they incorporate those practices into their future work, and what can you learn from such success stories?

Next, ask yourself, what kind of effort do you really need to make in order to make sales? A leader from the pharmaceutical industry shared an interesting thought; she said, “we’re not sending salespeople out to doctors, but doctors still use our drugs.” Do those salespeople need to go back to doctor visits? Take a look at your sales and consider that maybe you should make a different effort. Focus on new products, perhaps, and spend less time worrying about products that customers are going to buy anyway.

With that in mind, look at your structure for maintaining your customer relationships. Based on your recent experiences, what kind of touchpoints do your customers really need in order to stay engaged? If you have reduced your contact with them, or have fewer people reaching out to clients than before, what should you learn?

One Chief HR Officer noted they had multiple contacts at a consulting firm, depending on which program they were discussing, but they really wanted a single person; in the last two months, that’s what they got, and they want it to continue. Have your recent experiences taught you anything about how your customers would prefer to stay connected?

This pandemic has offered a lot of lessons for how to do business going forward. Have you been paying attention?