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The example isn’t just about when something goes wrong, but a constant dialogue and collaboration. The pillar of relationship marketing is with its install base conversation. As Kleber states, “We talk to them. We listen to them. We want to retain those customers for life, and we want them to see us as these crazy customer service zealots who will do everything possible to deliver a world-class service experience to them. And this crowd is really, really interested in pushing us to do more for them.”

In this new world, openness and collaboration is not an option. The ecosystem of today values and demands it. The more open and collaborative a company is, the more the environment today rewards the behavior of companies. The ecosystem matters in a bigger way!

Application to Your Company

As prerequisite for driving leads and revenue is the understanding of your global ecosystem. The bottom line is that your brand is a relationship you have with your customers. It is consistent representation, flawless execution, emotional connection, and experience. It is a relationship. Relationships are formed based on trust. Trust is usually formed by keeping your promises. You make a promise to your customers and keeping it is crucial. Why? Because it is a precondition of loyalty. Ninety-three percent of CEOs deem customer loyalty as one of their top challenges. Loyalty drives up repeat business. A 5 percent increase in loyalty yields increase in revenue on average a 10 percent cost savings. However, to have trust, you must earn it—and not just with your customers, but with your whole ecosystem.

Here are some suggested items to think through with your ecosystem:

  • Companies should have a clearly defined set of values that are integral to the organizational culture, are well communicated throughout the global organization, and are leveraged to guide individual actions. What processes are in place to ensure continuous relationship building and to create collaboration loops? How do you handle the good news and the bad news? How do you enable intimacy with the customer on a global scale and across diverse cultures?
  • Given the global scale and cultural diversity, how do you respond to needs without negatively impacting the overall commercial viability of the service or product?
  • What is required to transform the organization from a “plan-and-push” market approach to an “engage-and-collaborate” approach?
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