The key to business longevity is building relationships with customers

I’ve worked in and out of marketing for over a decade now, and if I’ve learned one thing it’s this: slick advertising campaigns are a great way to lure new business, but building a credible, sustainable relationship with consumers is your key to business longevity.

Case in point, I recently ordered a few gift cards for relatives out of state, at an eatery near their home. I won’t bore you with the details, but suffice it to say that several weeks went by and my online order was never processed – even though I was given confirmation.

Rarely at a loss for words, I complained to the establishment for the gift was somewhat time sensitive in nature.

What happened next pretty much astounded me.

After going back and forth a few times through emails, I was told that the gift cards would not only be sent out to my relatives, but at no cost to me.

You can imagine my surprise. I certainly wasn’t looking for any such compensation; I was just looking to rectify the problem going forward. Needless to say this was not only generous, but smart on the part of the eatery.

Why you might ask?

In business it’s all about perception.

The last thing you want to find out is that your organization is viewed negatively in the market. Word of mouth can be powerful advertising – especially if what is being perceived does not paint you in a very flattering light.

The eatery in question understood that concept, and knew that losing a few dollars was not worth losing potential customers with their own perceptions. They knew about business longevity.

Henry Ford once said, “A business that makes nothing but money is a poor business.”