Page 3: Investing in customer relationships
The major factor in CIS’s success is the strong, long-term relationship it enjoys with customers. In an increasingly impersonal business world of telephones, voice mail and faxes, CIS concentrates on face-to-face personal dealings with its customers. This is because CIS believes personal selling to be the most effective way of providing the service a customer has a right to expect. But ‘personal selling’ is too narrow a definition of the role of a home service agent. In a typical day a CIS sales person might visit existing or potential customers, organise and travel to appointments, process paperwork, attend a training course or gather intelligence on competitors. In CIS’s case the customer is less of a sales target and more of a partner for whom it seeks to provide tailor-made financial solutions.
The aims of CIS’s approach to personal selling are to retain customers in what is becoming an increasingly competitive marketplace by responding quickly to their needs and to provide instant feedback on what they want. The benefits of investing in such relationships are numerous and self-fulfilling. If customers are loyal, CIS can get to know them better and provide an even better service, which in turn increases customer satisfaction and makes them more loyal.