Eight Reasons Why Small Businesses Needs Relationship Marketing Focus

Relationship marketing and small business
When it comes to small business, marketing (1) should take a whole new role. It’s not about those traditional P’s (2) or those big marketing strategies with big budgets anymore (with exceptions). One may wonder then what it is about then ?

Well I believe as small business your marketing activities should be focused on “relationship building” with your target market or in other words you should take the approach of relationship marketing (3).

Why Relationship Marketing ?!


1.      Because you usually don’t have the resources being a small business to utilize the marketing mix effectively.

2.      Because you have small business and therefore have small number of customers and it is vital for your business to retain them instead of always trying to find new ones. While we all know, gaining new customers cost a lot more compared to retaining old ones (4).

Fact: It is 6-7 times more expensive to gain a new customer than it is to keep an existing one (4).

3.      Because you know and understand your customers, their needs, their life situations so on and so forth therefore it is far easier for you to build and maintain relationships unlike those big corporations.

4.      Because “marketing mix” is obsolete and relationship marketing is what you need now (5).

5.      Because relationship marketing helps you cut down costs (6).

6.      Because customer relationship management is an area of major significance for any business in present times (7).

7.      Because small businesses are too many, they and you offer almost the same stuff. You can’t differentiate on the basis of products/services therefore you need to focus on relationship marketing to increase your customer base, their satisfaction and to differentiate.

Fact: World wide macro, small, medium businesses were 125 million in 132 economies back in 2010 (8).
Fact: Each year over one million businesses start in U.S alone that excludes online start-ups. That means 116 each hour! (9).

8.      Because now it is far easy to keep in touch, less costly to maintain relationships with your customers thanks to the technological leaps in communication technologies and social media.

And according to a research WOMM (Word of Mouth Marketing) is one among many indicators (other indicators are increase in sales, loyalty) that suggest that your Relationship Marketing efforts are successful (10).

That means if you want to know if your relationship marketing efforts are paying off, keep check on WOMM, increase in sales, customer loyalty

That’s it, now I would really appreciate my readers to share their thoughts, ideas, contentions, be my guest in comments.

References:


1.       Borden, N.H. (1964), ``The concept of the marketing mix'', Journal of Advertising Research, Vol. 4, June, pp. 2-7. & McKitterick, J.B. (1957), “What is the marketing management concept”, in Bass, F. (Ed.), Frontiers of Marketing Thought and Action, American Marketing Association, Chicago, IL, pp. 71-82.
 
2.       McCarthy, E.J. (1960), Basic Marketing: A Managerial Approach, Irwin, Homewood, IL. & Mindak, W.A. and Fine, S. (1981), ``A fifth `P': public relations'', in Donnely, J.H. and George, W.R. (Eds)  Marketing of Services, American Marketing Association, Chicago, IL, pp. 71-3.
 
3.       Berry, L.L. (1983), “Relationship marketing”, in Berry, L.L., Shostack, G.L. and Upah, G.D. (Eds), Emerging Perspectives on Services Marketing, American Marketing Association, Chicago, IL, pp. 25-8.
 
4.    White House Office of Consumer Affairs.

5.       Gronroos, C. (1997), ``From marketing mix to relationship marketing ± towards a paradigm'', Management Decision, Vol. 35, March-April, pp. 322-40.
 
6.       Mosad Zineldin, (2000),"Beyond relationship marketing: technologicalship marketing", Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol. 18 Iss: 1 pp. 9 – 23
 
7.       Payne, A. and Frow, P. (2006), “Customer relationship management: from strategy to implementation”, Journal of Marketing Management, Vol. 22 Nos 1/2, pp. 135-68.

8.    http://www.ifc.org/msmecountryindicators

9.    Small Business by the Numbers (Washington DC: Small Business Administration, 2004)

10. Exploring relationship marketing in membership associations Nathan A. Vincent and Cynthia M. Webster Department of Marketing and Management, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia 
   

About Publisher Arshad Amin

Certified SEO Professional, Small Business, Start-up, Marketing Expert with ton's of practical, actionable ideas, insights to share, Proud Founder and Owner of www.easymarketinga2z.com and www.topexpertsa2z.com

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