Getting Started with Relationship Marketing

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As humans, we all know how to be social, engage in conversations, and build relationships. Even then, it’s astounding how so many fail to do exactly that on social media. Remember that old saying, “It’s not what you know, but who you know”? Yes, networking and relationships are everything in business. But when done with the wrong intentions, failed relationship marketing activities can be damaging, to say the least. So we decided to chat with the expert of relationship marketing, Jessika Phillips on how to go about it. Here’s a summary of our chat.

Guest: Jessika Phillips
Topic: Getting started with relationship marketing
Format: Eight questions directed at the guest. Everyone’s welcome to share.

Q1: What is relationship marketing?

Relationship marketing refers to a type of marketing that generates business by building and nurturing genuine relationships with your community. This includes existing customers, fans, employees, and prospects.

As Rachel from Express Writers said, building these relationships can help you develop the every-important Know-Like-Trust factor in your business.

When done right, relationship marketing can turn your followers into fans, clients into advocates, community members into collaborators, and employees into evangelists.

It’s a great way to show you care about your community, but also to capture their attention, articulate your uniqueness, and nurture conversations that’ll bring you return customers. And all the while, you’ll be providing a great customer experience. It’s win-win all the way.

Just remember, even though all of this sounds like a comprehensive strategy, relationship marketing isn’t a campaign you run for a few weeks or months. It has to be ingrained into the way you do business.

Q2: Why is social media ideal for relationship marketing?

Building relationships is the purpose of social media. That’s why social media is the ideal place for your relationship marketing—it gives you every opportunity to give value and receive feedback, suggestions, and support.

Nowadays people choose a business based on how they’re treated. Good customer experience is the foundation of a successful business, and social media is the best way to ensure that your customer-facing teams are all working together to help your customers.

As Lance added, social media is a perfect platform to expand your reach. Not only can you engage with your existing community, but because social media algorithms automatically detect and proliferate engaging content, you can reach more people just by interacting with more people.

Q3: Who should engage in relationship marketing?

We all should, according to our guest. When you build relationships, people will tell their friends and family about you. It’s the easiest and best way to generate new leads and business.

Take care of your existing customers and relationships, focus on delivering a good experience for them every time, and your business will thrive.

The great thing about relationship marketing, as Madalyn told us, is that everyone can do it. It’s about being genuine and helpful, and those are the qualities we all look for in a friendship. The essence of relationship-building is caring about each other, and you don’t have to be in a specific industry to do that. When people like and trust you, they will do business with you. It’s as simple as that.

Most importantly, when we’re genuine in our relationships, we do better work. That’s why we’re often more willing to help our parents than distant cousins we only meet once or twice a year.

Q4: How can brands get started with relationship marketing on Twitter?

The first step is to make sure that your business culture reflects who you are. If you have a toxic and unhelpful culture at work, then you won’t be able to build up those relationships with your community.

Secondly, identify your ideal customers. Knowing your audience and who you’re speaking to can help you craft the perfect message. It also helps you stay on track and not feel overwhelmed.

Thirdly, and this goes hand in hand with developing your culture, focus on being genuine and transparent in your communications. Don’t try and be someone else you think is cool. Be yourself and train yourself to be ok with who you are.

Finally, never stop experimenting and learning. Use a variety of tools to put out a range of content. Focus on providing value with every piece of content and you’ll constantly grow as a brand.

Theodora shared a few more tips to help get started with relationship marketing. Don’t be afraid to follow fans who regularly engage with you, participate in your community members’ conversations—especially if it involves you, show your audience that you value their feedback, and always be open to hearing from them.

Q5: Are there ways to do relationship marketing other than on social media?

Certainly. While social media is an easy way to develop relationships, we were a social species even before social media. You can always show your appreciation with personalized cards, messages, gift boxes, and so much more.

It’s important to remember, though, showing that you care about your community doesn’t have to be pricey. Jessica shared her blog that has a number of great ideas ways for you to appreciate your clients, team members, and fans.

Of course, as our guest reminded us, nurturing your relationships with existing customers is just as valuable as looking for new customers. More than the tool you use or the amount of money you spend, it’s the thought of doing something for your audience that matters most.

Jessica also told us about some of her favorite tools and her free guide to relationship marketing. Check it out here:

That’s not all, though! If you have a website, you can also use that as a base to develop great relationships with your audience. Audit your side for experience issues and fix them so that every visitor gets a great, seamless experience. It sounds simple, but how many times have you gotten frustrated with a website that’s not clearly linked or loads too slowly? Eliminate all of those issues and that by itself will become your conversation starter.

Q6: What are some common mistakes people make in relationship marketing?

The biggest mistake, according to our guest, is not making a brand manifesto. Think of it like a blueprint for your business. A brand manifesto should guide your branding and marketing activities. Without it, you could end up talking to an audience that’s not necessarily ideal for your brand.

Another common mistake is not investing enough in the people who talk to your customers on a daily basis. This includes your sales, support, and marketing teams. Spend time and effort on building an internal culture that motivates your teams. Relationship marketing is not just for your clients, but also for your employees and consultants. That will translate into their conversations with customers, and before you know it, you’ll have clients who choose you just because doing business with you consistently makes them feel great.

Christine told us about a big mistake so many of us have been on the receiving end of being too salesy too soon. Sure, people know that you’re a business and you need to make a sale. But people are people first. Don’t go into a conversation mentally prepared to sell something to them. Friendships should stem from sincerity.

Q7: Name some brands that do relationship marketing well.

Jessica told us about many of her favorite brands. First up was Agorapulse. We’ve heard so much about Agorapulse on the chat because it’s a great tool for managing your social media handles. But that’s not all—they also prioritize community engagement, treating their customers and fans so well that they have a band of loyal evangelists.

Amazon got a mention, too. Even though they’re such a global brand and it’s come to a point where we almost can’t live without it, they still continue to innovate in favor of their customer. From product UI to customer support to delivery and tracking, they’ve made shopping easy and convenient.

Some other good brands to check out and learn from are JetBlue, StreamYard, WaveVideo, and Hubspot.

And of course, our guest made a special shout-out to Sugarwish, Fireflies, and HR Partner for the great work they’ve been doing.

Yet another community favorite is Chewy. As Alyx pointed out, they even send out cards for your pets’ birthdays. That’s taking a personal touch to a whole new level.

Q8: Share some resources to learn more about relationship marketing.

Jessica shared her company’s blog that talks about relationship marketing and its essential steps. Check it out: What is Relationship Marketing? (And How Do You Do It?)

In their recent live show, Jessica and Mike spoke to marketing expert Allie Bloyd about relationship marketing and the benefits of adopting it as a strategy. Read all about their conversation here: How To Use Relationship Marketing To Transform Your Life And Business

And of course, Jessica also has her free guide, Learn Relationship Marketing.

Well, folks, that’s all from me this week. Thanks for reading through, and for more great insights from our chat with Jessica, browse through this Twitter Moment that Joana put together for us. And join us for the next #TwitterSmarter chat. WE’re on every Thursday at 1pm ET—see you then!

About me, Narmadhaa:

I write all the things—technical and marketing copy to fill the pocket; haiku and short stories to fill the soul. A social media enthusiast, I’m a member of the #TwitterSmarter chat crew, and always happy to take on writing gigs.

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