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Customer Intimacy: The Key to Customer Success in The COVID-19 Era 25 June 2020

 

The past few months have witnessed some major shifts in the B2B Saas buying cycle – massive engagement, more click-throughs, and a hefty amount of content downloads. But despite the heavy numbers and immense participation, we seem to witness fewer conversions down the funnel. The reason behind this anomaly is, what I feel, the lack of customer intimacy. Well, those of you thinking what customer intimacy got to do with B2B SaaS marketing, it’s actually the latent and the most potent ingredient behind successful purchase stories. 

 

What’s Customer Intimacy?

Resting between the key pillars of customer relationships and engagement, customer intimacy can be called a business strategy that tends to customer needs, and the measurement of a company’s alignment and prioritization of those needs. 

In simple terms, it is a kind of emotional connection with the customer, addressing their needs, and solving their problems. The process involves close contact and outreach to customers across a varied range of channels.

 

Does Intimacy Really Influence Buying Decisions?

Physically interacting with a prospect in a business conference is most likely to bring about conversion, if you strike the right chord. However, this physical contact will certainly be missing in the post-pandemic world. Due to social distancing, the world seems more disconnected than ever. This gives more scope to customer support teams to virtually meet with potential buyers. But simply mechanically connecting with buyers doesn’t necessarily bring about intimacy. You have to emotionally connect with them and build a relationship that would become the sole impetus driving his or her buying decisions. Without this secret ingredient, leads get stuck and conversions become elongated. 

If you think about it closely, it’s this intimacy that makes a customer want to purchase a product or service, rather than simply desiring it. Small moments of customer intimacy stories slowly amplify the bonds throughout the customer journey, leading to sustainable business growth.

 

How Can you Bring about Customer Intimacy?

Customer intimacy increases customer loyalty and fosters customer-driven revenue growth for the business. Here’s how you can leverage customer intimacy:

 

1. Value your Customers

The first step towards customer intimacy is valuing the customer, letting them know that their feedback and input are valued and appreciated. I feel this can be achieved by just taking an extra step & thinking out-of-the-box like creating a group for your customers to communicate or appointing customer advisory boards. Another way of making them feel special is to reach out to high-value consumers before product launches to get their input and ideas.

 

2. Create an Open Environment for Customer Queries

An open ambiance helps a lot to build customer intimacy. Being available 24X7 and resolving questions in real-time work wonders to build a rapport with the customer. Without the right inputs, it is impossible to create the right experience for your customers. Asking the right questions, at the right time, enables you to understand what makes your customers tick, which ultimately builds intimacy. 

Also, ensure that you are giving your customers enough room to ask you questions. This step builds the basic bond of trust and connection. At Muvi, we try to build a rapport with the customer by constantly interacting with them, connecting with them emotionally and personally guiding them throughout their entire buying journey.

 

3. Messaging

Cross-selling and upselling are “the most” vital key to increase the average revenue per customer and consequent customer success. But the new normal is a test for all the B2B SaaS companies to prove that they are actually customer-centric as they claim to be. 

We strongly believe the OTT industry has been fortunate enough to survive the pandemic because the circumstances complement the industry’s value proposition. The result is out there for all to see. But there has been record-level laid-offs too. Companies have shut operations. It has impacted both the economic and social lives of people across the globe.

So, if on the due date your customer’s credit card does not work, do you have a sensible message canned? Can you not write to a customer “Do you really want to leave” who is canceling subscription due to financial crunch? If you can, then stay assured that your customers will come back and the collaboration happening afterward will be driven by trust and not by mere persuasion. A bit of humanity combined with honesty goes a long way. 

 

4. Live Interaction with Customers

The pandemic has caused in-person event cancellations, so companies are challenged to create that personal connection with prospects virtually. I feel this is the right time to connect with potential buyers by hosting fun, live events that would enable them to build a personal relationship with your brand. For example, you can host coffee chats, fitness classes, and roundtables for like-minded people. 

 

5. Talk like a Human

Your Sales and Support people must see your human side first to make your customers believe in your philosophy. Trim down your expectations for a while. Refine your strategies. With less to focus on, your support team will be able to help your customers as and when they need it. Being sensible to your customer’s core business needs will let you connect at a level where the concept of true customer intimacy lies. 

If you put the customer first, the customer will reciprocate in putting you first. Always.

Tag @Muvi with #ThoughtsdayLeadership on Twitter and share your thoughts. 

See you in our next Thoughtsday Leadership segment!

 

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Anshuman Das
Anshuman is the founder and CEO of Muvi. He’s a serial entrepreneur. Prior to starting Muvi, he founded two companies and sold one of them. A man of ideas, he has an unusual capacity for visualizing and formulating new techniques, businesses, and products and a unique flair for turning great ideas into great outcomes. He is currently based in New York.

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