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How to get closer to your customers

Steve Jobs on why it's important to get close to your customers

Do you have long term contracts with customers? Are you regularly monitoring the strength of your customer relationships? Do you regularly check that your customers are happy with your services? Do you know if your customers are confident in your ability to deliver to their expectations?

Steve Jobs' mantra is as important to B2B customers relationships as it is to those in the consumer world. Understanding and monitoring your customer engagement is vital to ensure you are at the top of the list when contracts come up for renewal and that you keep your customers from entertaining your competitors.

Through improving your customer engagement you can understand your customer's strategy; understand how you can provide more innovative solutions and achieve deeper penetration into the account.

You may have checking processes in place but do you know your clients in depth?

A simple question to ask is: "Do my customers see me as a partner or just as a supplier?"

Customer engagement is about measuring your customer sentiment. This can be done through a customer satisfaction survey or through regular face-to-face contacts. Or through a combination of several methods.

Improving your customer engagement will help you create a client partnership which will

  • Avoid commoditisation and pricing pressure
  • Identify opportunities for innovation and increased efficiency
  • Increase the perceived value of your services

The key is to gather the data to provide you with right customer insights to ensure customer data generates actionable insights.

You can start this process now using this tool to measure the strength of your customer engagement.


Companies can't build lasting partnerships based on product, process or price alone. For B2B companies, success lies in the quality of customer relationships and the continual improvement of their customer engagement.

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