A joint venture marketing partnership gets a business and their line of products and/or services in front of new customers, but failure to execute satisfactorily will kill the deal. If you are unable to properly service the inflow of customers and ensure satisfied clients than the partnership flow of hot leads will dry up and many partners may walk away from the deal if they feel customers have been impacted negatively.
The biggest fear of any joint venture partner is how there customers will be treated from the start of the sales cycle to the delivery of the goods or services and any issues that may arise in between. No one wants to be the person that recommends a company only for that person to have an unpleasant experience. This needs to be a number one priority for heavily sales focused organizations that have teams constantly pushing for the next deal to close. Create processes in the exchange between partners to make sure customers are followed up with on specific time intervals post sales transaction to ensure any issues are resolved quickly and efficiently.
Ticket System for Issues
Depending on the size of the partner businesses and the number of potential customers it is wise to have a ticket system in place for reporting issues. This system should be made available to all partners for the purpose of responding to customer service issues as they arise in order to make sure they’re handled in an efficient and timely manner. There’s nothing worse then being a customer with a problem and feeling like you are contacting a black hole. Create an online email form where customers can fill out requests or ask questions. Make sure the online ticket system has an automated response to reassure the customer that their issue has been received and will be addressed soon.
Log Problems & Update During Meetings
Logging all customer problems should be mandatory in the partnership agreement so that both parties can improve the customer experience. Both partner companies should be seeking clients that will actively refer their business based on a smooth and professional customer service experience. During meetings with partners resolving customer complaints and problems with service should be addressed without delay and if there is a string of issues that stem from a single problem do not wait to address the problem at a later date get it fixed immediately. It can be easy to avoid making changes to personal or procedures, but that’s why any partnership needs to start slow and work out any kinks between the two companies servicing the customer together.
Reward Excellent Customer Service
If you have an employee that is repeatedly acknowledged by customers as especially helpful, make sure to reward that employee in a way that fits your company’s culture. Whether it’s a small bonus or gift certificate, employees that go above and beyond to provide excellent service deserve recognition for the work they’re putting in. Resolving customer problems and dealing with issues that the sales team may have not been clear about can be difficult on a customer support team member. For this reason it’s extremely important to do everything possible to make sure the marketing and sales pitches are consistent across the board.
Take the time to make consumers feel special and you’ll be rewarded with long term customers that ultimately assist you in attracting new business by their referrals. Failure to provide consistent and excellent customer service will only cost your business in the long run by losing crucial customer referrals. Spend time with your front line of customer support team to understand the issues that they’re facing repeatedly to try and resolve them from occurring altogether in the future.
Christian Fea is CEO of Synertegic, Inc. A Joint Venture Marketing firm. He exemplifies how to profit from Joint Venture relationships by creating profit centers with minimal risk and maximum profitability.
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