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5 Ways to Build Authentic Long Lasting Business Relationships


It’s no longer good enough to just sell them something and then move on. Now you need to cultivate relationships that ensure that the relationship lasts longer.

Building long-lasting relationships takes time in business. As a business leader, building long-lasting business relationships is essential to ongoing success. You can't operate a business without engaging people, and growing your company starts with establishing meaningful connections with others. Whether you're building relationships with customers, clients, vendors, or other business leaders, you should aim to connect with them on a deeper level. How can you show the people you do business with that you genuinely care?

Building authentic business relationships starts with recognizing the importance of viewing everyone as a person with their own desires, motives, and interests. After this, you can use the following techniques for creating genuine business relationships. The benefits of transforming your short-term, single-project clients into permanent, productive business partners will lead to client loyalty, incoming referrals, networking outreach, reduced marketing costs, and other competitive advantages. When regarded and treated as a partner, a client will be far more likely to listen to you with trust and genuinely appreciate the work that you do for them. But establishing and maintaining “partner-level” amounts of trust, acceptance, understanding, and camaraderie is certainly no easy task. Here are a few key guidelines to help you build long-lasting business relationships and further your reputation as a strong partner.


A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person quote

Establish and Live by Your Brand Promise

Your brand promise is an essential part of a successful business strategy. Be honest and ethical. The business world can be frustrating because of all the unethical companies out there. But you should keep to your own morals and not cross those legal and ethical boundaries just to get business. Because the key for business success is not how many different businesses you do work for, but rather, how many long-term customers you have. It is these long-term customers that will be your best brand ambassadors. You should focus on "quality", not "quantity" of business relationships. Having a brand that aligns with company goals, culture, and value will powerfully connect with customers who share those same goals and values.

Be authentic. Staying true to who you are and being transparent about it can go a long way to establish long last business relationships. It is easy to create a false company persona online however, your business relationships will be short lived. Targeting people and other businesses that you share a natural connection and ease of communication with can accelerate your positive business relationships. Stay true to your business values. Clear and consistent business and personal core values help align stakeholders, both internal and external. Be willing to lose money if the connection does not embody a shared vision. Having align values and shared visions serve as a basis of strong business relationships.


The key is when a customer walks away, thinking, 'Wow,  I love doing business with  them quote

Create a Valuable Product or Service

Every relationship begins with an introduction and that can be the hardest step for small businesses. An inbound approach is a good way to go. It is much easier to build a relationship when customers have discovered you from something valuable that you're created to help them. Give freely and give first. In doing so, people will remember you. You may wonder "why free - isn't the goal to make money?". Well, yes, of course it is. But not all returns on investment should be monitored by the dollar amount it brought to you. Business functions as a domino effect.

Just think for a moment, how many people can be reached by you giving something free to ONE client. Not only does that client appreciate you, but they are also going to tell all their friends and family what a pleasure it was to work with you and how to solve their problem. Solving your target market's problem is the first goal of business and it does lead to business success. In my opinion, word of mouth is absolutely the best low-cost way of marketing. And statistics back up my opinion as 88% of consumers trust their friends recommendations over traditional media.


Ask your customers to be part of the solution, quote

Provide Excellent Customer Service

Customer service is the #1 free strategy for growth and relationship building. You have no business without your customer, and they should come first. Work on perfecting every interaction with clients because advertising is not as powerful as it used to be. By making your customers first and living by that practice, your customers will become your biggest business fans. Seek honest and ongoing feedback from customers. Actionable client feedback can do wonders to improve business relationships. Just seeking feedback communicates a clear message to customers that their opinions and feelings matter to you. However, never stop there. Show them how you took their feedback and made positive customer service changes. Listen A LOT.

You have two ears and one mouth for a reason.

Use this quote as a guide to listen twice as much as you talk. Treat people the way you want to be treated. Be yourself, be vulnerable and show a personal interest in your clients. The best companies go above and beyond to make their customers happy. Even though this may take extra effort and added expenses, never forget that people will talk about the good a company did, but they will talk even more so if they are unhappy with your service or product. Long term effects from positive and authentic business relationships far outweigh the added effort you put into making customer service a top priority.


Consistency is the true foundation of trust_quote

Fulfill Promises and Build Trust

Because a partnership is a two way street, you need to deliver on your promises. Be sure to set rational expectations in your business relationships though. Making promises that are too lofty is a recipe for disappointment, frustration, and distrust. Remaining faithful to established agreements is the absolute least you should do to foster authentic business relationships, however, the supreme importance of expectation-setting and final accountability cannot be overstated. Figure out how you can provide additional value such as time, resources, connections, or expertise. If you meet a person or company that might benefit from another connection, make that introduction to build trust. That is just good old-fashioned networking.


Networking is not about just connecting people_quote

Partner with Other Businesses

Support and connect with business with like-minded goals. Seek out business that compliment your own and find creative ways to bundle yourselves together because there really is power in numbers. Be prepared with a short way of introducing yourself, your business, and what you do for people while framing it with the benefits to your clients. Focus on relational value and not transactional value while cultivating your network and relationships each day.

Check in on your business partners and let them know how you can help them by getting to know their needs, values, and what drives them. These kinds of business calls should be about them, not you. Focusing on mutual success is the best way to approach partnering with other businesses. The greatest compliment in business is a referral, and, as such, you should be thoughtful, have the right motives and be connecting with people for the right reasons.


It takes a dedicated amount of time and energy to build good, strong, lasting business relationships today. But these kinds of relationships are such an integral and necessary part of success. Selectivity, consistency, and engagement are essential for finding great people that you count on and rely on for support, direction and insight while growing relationships with them. Trust is the one ingredient that builds strong, long lasting business relationships. There are several characteristics for success. Be yourself, be honest, listen, and be helpful. If you want business relationships to be fruitful, they must trust you. The key to relationship building is trust and credibility.


Honestly and transparency make you vulnerable quote

Finally, authenticity is a given. I treat every single client and project like my own. I am absolutely committed to their success, and I walk the talk. When we educate, help, and inspire others with our experience and expertise, we are building the foundation for trust that underlies relationships that endure.

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