Client Relationships: Keeping it Sticky

Over the past few weeks in the direct marketing world, it’s been the IMG_75742016 awards season. Albeit, no red carpet, no Vanity Fair party, no celebrity dish…but incredibly important, validating and fun nonetheless.

We’ve been fortunate to pick up a few “marketing Oscars” ourselves this season—thanks to the American Business “Stevie” Awards and the Philly PDMA Benjamin Franklin Awards.

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We are so humbled and happy that our hard work and great luck have come together to create win-worthy results.

No question—the ceremonies are a blast. Cocktails, reunions with former colleagues, who’s-got-a-beard-now-watching, the thrill of victory, the vicious envy of defeat, more cocktails if you won and even more if you lost.

After the trophies have settled into their cupboards and we’ve had time to reflect,  it’s got us thinking about what really is central to these honorariums: our clients. Without ‘em, 13161804_1026688780702047_1432419598323197123_owe’d be strategizing and writing and creating for nuthin’.  The proverbial case of all dressed up and nowhere to go.

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We always aim for the “citadel on the hill,” the loooong term customer. And we’ve been successful in that, with our average tenure being over nine years. We’ve had some that were even longer—12, 13 years.  And those are the extraordinary situations that really allow us to build a true Maserati with lots of laps around the track ahead of all of us.

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When you get to hang together with a brand that long, you get to do some amazing things together. Here’s just a few:

  • Grow a business from a seed to a field. Can’t tell you how many clients we started out with on a teen-tiny little project, and then when that worked, another one, and then another one. Bigger and bigger year over year, helping them achieve growth.
  • Build expertise from in-depth understanding. There’s no underestimating the knowledge base on both sides accrued from a long-term engagement. As an agency partner, we get to know and care for a business like it’s our own, and a brand has the same regard for our understanding of their needs, experience, history, and goals. In fact, many times we’ve been in place as the agency as a brand’s staff has changed, and our consistency is almost irreplaceable as personnel ramp up to speed.
  • Earn trust. See above. What happens when you’ve been successful with your clients’ marketing is that there’s a trust factor that cannot be bought. It’s the result of many quarters in the marketplace together, duking it out for market share.
  • Develop lifelong relationships. Not only do we celebrate at awards together—we go to each other’s weddings, toast each other’s successes, stay connected over the lifespan of careers.

Whether it’s awards or the most important battles in the marketplace—

these are hard-fought forays into deep waters and rough terrain. The scars and medals are borne by all, making it a bonding experience like no other.

So a toast to our clients now, then and in the future!

Bennys 2016

Direct Choice Inc. is a full-service direct marketing agency that has worked with national and regional brands in a wide variety of vertical markets. In addition to this blog, you can also find us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn

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