CRM: What Forms a Strong Customer Relationship?

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Anneke Zwart
Student (University), Netherlands

CRM: What Forms a Strong Customer Relationship?

Of course a vital relationship between customer and company is critical for CRM to be efficient. But what forms a strong relationship? The answer on this question is not always clear. Nguyen and Mutum mention four essential factors important in pertaining a strong customer relationship:
1.Trust and commitment: Trust means feeling secure by believing in positive and beneficial intentions of parties involved. Therefore, trust is positively related to satisfaction and loyalty. Besides, trust is an important component of commitment which also increases satisfaction and loyalty.
2. Satisfaction: there exist a positive relationship between satisfaction and loyalty; satisfied clients are more likely to maintain a good relation. Furthermore, since a relationship’s duration is dependent on a clients subjective evaluation of this relationship, satisfaction increases the duration of a relationship as well.
3. Symmetry and independence: symmetry means to what extend the members of the relationship are equal. The more asymmetric a relation, the more likely conflicts will develop and thus the less stable the relationship. Furthermore, the more dependent one party is on the other party, the less symmetric and thus the less stable a relationship.
4. Fairness: research has shown that fairness in a relationship improves the quality. It is essential to develop projects and methods which are considered to be fair by the members of the relationship, in order to maintain a good relation.
Source: Nguyen, B. And D. S. Mutum. (1995). A Review of Customer Relationship Management: Successes, Advances, Pitfalls and Futures. Oxford Brookes Business School, Oxford Brookes University, Oxford, UK, and Warwick Business School, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK

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