August 7 marks "Treasure Your Customers Day." Rewarding customers means more than quirky holiday discounts and thank-you cards. To treasure your customers, you need to begin with an inventory of your customer satisfaction levels and relationship assets. Sail the high seas by digging deep to discover your customers' latent needs, acknowledging your flaws, resolving conflicts quickly and positively, and proactively encouraging feedback. Customers don't think of themselves as revenue oceans; they simply want you to delight them.
No need to roam the beach hunting for customer-appreciation tips this August. In honor of the holiday, check out the following resources: The American Marketing Association will host a "Silencing the Voice of the Customer" webcast on August 5, pillaging outdated perspectives on evaluating customer input and opinions. Register at www.marketingpower.com.
David Mosby and Michael Weissman's The Paradox of Excellence: How Great Performance Can Kill Your Business explores new ways to shore up customer loyalty.
Interested in customer cartography? Try a treasure map--an online resource that surveys relationships between companies and customers. Our pick: Corante Customer Intelligence blog.
Kirsten Osolind is CEO and founder of re:invention inc., a Chicago-based marketing consulting company.