Below is the introduction to the article. If you would like to read the entire interview, click here on DOWNLOAD and it will allow you download a PDF version of the interview. If you have any comments about the article that you would like to share, go to the CONTACT ME/SHARE button on the top of the blog where you can leave your comments. Here is the introduction…
Ok, we admit, the title isn’t “exactly” what we are asking you to do – but not far off, at least in principle. This isn’t a guide on office politics and what to do if you are romantically inclined with someone you are selling to or serve as a customer. So what exactly do we mean by Marry Your Customer? What we are talking about is how you can serve your customers in such a way as though it was like being married to them – understanding exactly what they want and being able to deliver it to build a Trusted and Loyal Relationship for a long time into the future. As you continue to read, I think you will understand how powerful the analogy really can be for you and your organization.
Let’s start with the personal side of the analysis. Put yourself in this situation. Say you are trying to build a “Trusted, Loyal Relationship” with someone. That someone could be a spouse, significant other, boyfriend, girlfriend, child, friend, or a host of other people with whom you would desire to have this type of relationship. Take a minute and visualize who this might be and fix it clearly in your mind as you continue to read. What does it look like? We will use the analogy of a “boyfriend/girlfriend” and ultimately a “spouse” as our example to illustrate the point but you can substitute any of the other people you might be thinking about as well to understand how this works. As with any good story, let’s start at the beginning. Let’s look at when you were first dating and then continue all the way to getting married.
If you are looking to have a long lasting relationship you would want to have it built on Trust and Loyalty, correct? If you agree, then an initial step would be building some level of trust with the other person. We all know that Trust is not a given and has to be “earned,” regardless of the relationship. If Trust is one of your first goals, then how should you to go about building that Trust? One of the ways would be by keeping “Promises” (implicitly or explicitly) to your boyfriend/girlfriend along the way. For instance, you might Promise something simple, like meeting them on time. Or you might Promise them something more complicated, like planning a trip. Either way, you have made a Promise that could lead to Trust.