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Build Relationships And Create Lifelong Retail Partners


August 03, 2022

Key Largo, FL--In business, it is sometimes said, “It’s not about what you know, but who you know?” With information available at our fingertips these days, people care more about the relationship they build with you or your brand and not so much about what you have to offer. When you think about it, your retailers don’t simply want a vendor – they want a partner. So, it makes sense that once you’ve built a good relationship the rest takes care of itself. But how do you accomplish that?


The best way is to leave everything you know about traditional selling behind and focus on the individual – get to know them. Head over to their Facebook page or LinkedIn profile and start taking notes. Find out what roles they’ve held in the past, what they like to do on the weekends, where they live, or if they have a family or pets.

This will give you great ideas for conversation starters to break the ice and find a commonality you can connect over. Not only will you seem interested in who they are as an individual but finding something to bond over will strengthen trust and credibility. Utilizing some of those small details – like if their kid had a baseball game last night – is a great way to keep those conversations human.

Your work isn’t done there. Everyone knows that once you’ve won somebody over, you don’t just stop trying. Make sure you’re keeping in touch outside of trade shows and business functions. Try requesting a Zoom or in-person meeting, like a lunch or dinner meeting, multiple times a year and make it a point to talk business and pleasure. Heck, even get their personal phone number and text them every so often just to see how they’re doing and if there’s anything you can do to support them.

Moreover, if they win an award or accomplish something huge, send a gift of congratulations to show you’re thinking of them. You can also put them on your holiday gift list and send them a thoughtful message on their birthday. You should position yourself like they’re a friend and in turn, they’ll truly want you to be their go-to – you may even notice that they’re more willing to give you some extra inside info, like what’s going on in-store and how shoppers are feeling about your product or collection.

There are infinite possibilities when you prioritize the relationship over selling, so get to it!


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