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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Who is your real bread and butter?


I'm talking about the icing on the cake, the sprinkles on the sundae, or the sprig of parsley on your dinner plate. Know what I mean? Okay, it's a metaphor for something else. The customers that make smaller purchases. Oh, Okay:D!

Have you ever stopped to consider how valuable these customers really are? It's important, because these are customers whose importance we sometimes overlook. We sometimes hold more value for the customers we think will provide us with bigger sales, and pay more attention to them. They're the ice cream part of the sundae, metaphorically speaking. But have you ever stopped to think that maybe they are your customers because of those that provided the sprinkles?

Here's an example of an actual customer of mine. Her name is Charlene. Charlene regularly shops with me, and doesn't really spend that much money with me. Usually around $20 each time for a couple of items that are her favored brands. She comes in about twice a month, and we'll chat for a little while. We've established a great relationship, exchanging hair tips, she tells me how to make fabulous recipes, etc. In other words, we're girlfriends.

I didn't expect this to happen, but I'm grateful for at least several of these relationships with my clients that have somehow crossed over into friendship. At least on some level. So here's another area Charlene has been valuable in helping build new business. She brings in her friends. She has another friend, Becky, who has just become a client of mine, and we've also established a great relationship. Becky also knows a lot of people, who I'm sure know more people. These are all possible referrals to be gained from knowing one key person.

Get where I'm going with all of this? What started off as a $20 purchase, has turned into regular visits, and referrals. That could amount to tens of thousands of dollars to my company's and my own benefit. Not to mention Charlene's, and Charlene's friends. Everybody wins. And the reason why this has happened is because I appreciated Charlene's business. And her friendship. I valued her as a person, and that's why she brought her friend in to see me. Because she trusted me. At the same time, I appreciate my clients who come in regularly, and simply because they want to see me. What an honor! And I think they also know how valuable they always are to me.

Thanks for stopping by...CC

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