You never think it will happen to you. Until it does. The painful truth is: You are more likely to be the victim of cheating now than at any other time in history. But no matter how repulsed it makes you feel, you’re entitled to know the truth.
Once, they chased you. But now, you’re just a forgotten conquest, and it hurts. Don’t you deserve to feel special? Appreciated? Valued? After all, you’ve been loyal over the years. Once upon a time, they put you on a pedestal and made you feel loved.
These days, things are more…transactionary. It feels like they’re just going through the motions. They tell you nothing’s changed, but you suspect they’re faking it.
Where Did The Spark Go?
Now, they’re picking up other people behind your back. Charming and entertaining them. Spending time with them. And even worse…spending money on them.
Time, attention and money that should be spent on you.
Think about it: What did they give you for your birthday? Perhaps an email or a gift voucher…if you’re lucky. Yet they tell you they value you.
No matter how badly they treat you – no matter how many times you say, “I’m leaving” – you’ll be back soon enough. You know it, and they know it.
Until they ghost you again, and the adulterous cycle repeats itself once more.
Would you tolerate this treatment in a romantic encounter? I hope not.
So why do you tolerate it in a business relationship?
Any business owner will say, “We love our customers,” which is a strange thing to say, considering how often they cheat on them.
At the start of a customer relationship, it’s all so new and exciting. Promises are made, breathless emails and phone calls are exchanged.
“Tell me what you want”, the business says.
“I’m tempted…show me what you’ve got”, the customer replies.
But after the customer gave a satisfied sigh and opened their…wallet, things go cold. Phone calls are left unanswered. Promises are broken.
The business owner is already trying to close their next conquest.
Most companies are hypnotised by the glitz and glamour of the short-term fling.
Leads, sales, subscriber counts, followers and likes: The exciting stuff that you think about in the shower as a guilty pleasure…when your customer is patiently waiting for you to call.
Very few businesses will do faithful, repetitive, loyal activities for their customers. And hardly any will do it with real passion.
But if they ignore their customers, they’re playing with fire. If they play with fire, they burn their bridges.
A recent article in Forbes highlights that almost 70% of customers will switch to a competitor that provides the best experience. After how they’ve been treated, you can’t blame them for seeking someone who can give them more bang for their buck.
Rediscover the Passion
I’m a business owner. I get it: ‘Delight and retain your customers’ isn’t exactly breaking news. But we’re also under pressure. The pandemic, staffing shortages, and supply chain disruptions continue to put strain on delivering excellent customer experience.
“Please excuse our poor performance. We’re doing the best we can”, we plead.
Not the words of a swaggering, confident, business that sets hearts alight, is it?
In terms of customer engagement, it’s as passionate as sitting in the waiting room of a sexual health clinic. But redemption is not only possible, it can also be very rewarding.
To rekindle that loving feeling, smart companies need to focus on engaging their existing customers. Instead of ignoring them as soon as a hot new prospect walks past.
This doesn’t have to be complicated, resource-intensive or expensive. You don’t need a fancy social media campaign or TV ads.
There’s a wealth of opportunity sitting in that customer database. Your current and past customers are just waiting for you to reach out.
I’ve worked with businesses where we pull in six figures cash faster than a shotgun wedding, simply by asking present customers if they would like to buy some more.
But – like in so many relationships – knowing the right thing to do is easy. Actually doing it is a different matter.
The Way Things Used To Be
It’s never too late to save a relationship. You can make them feel alive once more.
Pick up the phone, write them a personal email or even a letter (yes, really). You know what they like and how they like it, so put it on a plate for them. You might be surprised at what happens next. And you might never have to look elsewhere again.
So next time you’re tempted to cheat on a customer, stop and think about the consequences.
Don’t risk that hard-won trust for a moment of madness. Look deep into the heart of your customer relationship and remind yourself…
“It’s not you. It’s me.”
Related: Wake Up, Lazy Ass(ets)