For us, sports hospitality isn't just about soaking up the action (although that's a big part of it!) — We do everything we can to help our clients make deeper and more meaningful business connections. To that end, here are 5 tips on boosting your contacts book in 2023...
Building a loyal client base is the cornerstone of any successful business.
Devotees of your brand will spend more money and stick around for longer. And the more long-term clients you have, the less you need to rely on customer acquisition efforts.
What's more, loyal clients are more likely to recommend your services to others, making them one of the cheapest and most effective marketing tools at your disposal.
So how do you go about turning regular clients into trusted partners who'll use your services time and again?
First — and perhaps most obviously — it helps if your products or services provide them with real value.
But there are a number of other ways you can forge deeper relationships with your clients. Follow these five expert tips and make 2023 the year you make more meaningful business connections than ever before…
Tip #1: Treat your clients' success as your own
Forget the ‘them and us’ mindset; if you can pull out all the stops to make your clients successful, your business will undoubtedly benefit.
Treat their projects as your own and do all you can to help their business grow. If you think your client might benefit from a connection, make the introduction; yes, it sounds like an old-fashioned networking tip, but remember: what goes around, comes around.
Tip #2: Ask thoughtful questions
If you really want to strike a chord with a client, you’ll need to move beyond polite small talk. Asking thoughtful, open-ended questions about their attitudes towards business not only demonstrates an interest in their professional opinion but also gives you a better understanding of what makes them tick. Three examples: ‘How do you encourage creative thinking within your organisation?’ ‘What is one characteristic that you believe every business leader should possess?’ and ‘Do you have a hobby outside work that helps you in your job?
Tip #3: Show your human side
Business relationships often involve power plays. And while these can be useful (in a negotiation, for example) constant power struggles can make interactions feel like hard work. You’re likely to forge a much deeper client relationship if you demonstrate that, as well as being a strong individual, you’re very much human, too. Showing vulnerability from time to time — ‘fessing up to your mistakes or accepting that someone is more knowledgeable on a particular subject than you — shows that you’re candid, compassionate and authentic.
Tip #4: Learn from your unhappy clients
Bill Gates once said, ‘Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.’ If a client has a problem with your products or services — or takes issue with how you do business — try to learn what they hated. Ask what changes they’d recommend and take their advice on board. There’s every chance it will help to elevate your business to the next level.
Tip #5: Meet clients regularly, not just when you want something
It’s important to cultivate your network and nurture your relationships, which means making an effort to catch up regularly. Dropping former bosses, mentors, clients or colleagues a message every two to three months can be mutually beneficial and uncovers a surprising number of opportunities.
Catch up for a coffee or — better still — invite them on a day out to remember at one of the year's top sporting events with Links Hospitality. It's our belief that nothing unites people like sport, and we’re here to harness the power of grand sporting occasions to help you make meaningful business connections.