The purpose of Relationship Centered Marketing (RCM) is to systematically affirm that the seller likes and respects the buyer, be it a customer or contact-worthy prospect, as differentiated from most marketing that promotes reasons (e.g., low prices, great service, new products, etc.) why the buyer should like the seller.
RCM is tactfully planned, personalized-for-credibility customer/prospect contact delivering ongoing relationship building messages to generate repeat and referral business and their high-value-to-all-involved benefits. Based upon relationship centered business, it utilizes the fundamental components of positive relationships to enhance the seller’s relationship with the buyer. And, in doing so, improves both the quality and quantity of the business they do together. The secondary message, when merited, is that of the product or service.
RCM is not Loyalty-based Marketing. Loyalty is a result of relationship centered marketing. Effectively employed, RCM doesn’t need the premiums, rewards, points, coupons or any other profit-reducing incentives recommended or required by many loyalty-based marketing programs. In fact, the use of incentives, especially if they dominate the focus of your customer contacts, can detract from your relationships. (I.e., What would you think of a friend who continually finds reasons to sell their products/services to you?) The only expense relationship centered marketing requires is creating and delivering its message.
RCM is to Relationship Marketing what a specifically named pharmaceutical is to the term “medicine.” Relationship Marketing, like medicine, is such an ambiguous description it’s difficult to know exactly what it is. Hence, while RCM is relationship marketing, relationship marketing is usually not RCM.
In truth, relationships can’t begin without communication, and while a positive memory (be it from a personal or business experience) can prolong a relationship, timely, well thought-out and considerately delivered RCM advances it.
Relationship Centered Marketing is primarily dedicated to strengthening the buyer’s image of the seller’s understanding, likeability and honesty.
“People do business with those they know, they like and they trust.”