Six Key Ingredients to Successful Business Relationships

While large to small software companies target niche audiences to market and sell their products to, those in the know go above and beyond to actively develop solutions to meet how their clients do business. Successful software companies have worked many years to identify unique requirements within their target audience, and they always look for ways to continuously improve their products and services to meet the current and future needs. Consequently, when a client purchases the products or services from such a vendor, the client not only gains a superior product, but inherently adopts a vested business partner. Following are six key ingredients that have been found as successful protocols when developing and maintaining business relationships.

  • Initial Contact. A hard sales technique can generate a higher probability of unqualified leads, and as we all know, lasting relationships are cultivated over time. Through a soft sales approach, initial contact typically begins when a prospective client reaches out to express a need. Nine times out of ten, a qualified prospective client seeks out their vendor of choice, and not the other way around. This contact is generally generated by word of mouth, a previous user of the product, Web site search result, social media, or at annual tradeshows and conferences.  As any leading global distributor of a product, the reputation and shared experiences typically sell the product.
  • Demo of Products. After initial contact has been established, the development of a business relationship begins. The prospective client typically requests a demonstration of the product with a specific agenda in mind, all to ensure their operational best practices can be met. If the product is designed with flexibility, ease of use, comprehensive security, and an encyclopedic reporting engine, then adhering to the various ways software can be utilized should effortlessly conform to the most stringent of processes. The goal of conducting demos is to share how the software’s high-powered functionality, flexibility, and ease of use exceeds expectations, and more often than not if done successfully, solidifies the prospective clients concerns and enables an educated decision to move forward with engaging an agreement.
  • Engagement. After agreements have been executed and the prospective client becomes a business partner of the vendor, dates are typically established for the services (installation and training); environmental and operational surveys are conducted and reviewed for completeness; and a project manager may be assigned to assist answering any questions and ensuring all measures are taken to safeguard a seamless implementation process. Throughout the engagement process, open communication between points of contact is key to establishing protocols, understanding each other’s expectations, and clarifying any uncertainties that may arise.
  • Services. A comprehensive training process is not only essential to laying the groundwork for future success, but should be expected as a requirement. Without ‘buy-in’ and an adequate understanding of the tool any professional is expected to utilize, the hope for future success is futile. When users are fully trained, they are armed and capable to use the tool to its fullest potential whereby achieving organizational goals. This not only produces a knowledgeable operations team, but is a win-win situation for the business relationship.
  • Maintenance and Support. Vendors of choice pride themselves in working with client-partners to make sure they are satisfied. Having a qualified and committed support team on call 24 hours a day, five business days a week, to answer questions, troubleshoot problems, and ultimately solve any issues that may arise provides the peace of mind behind any concerns of commitment. Surveys are a great method to inquire about partner-client satisfaction after any training or support is conducted. These results typically provide a keen gauge of the client’s ongoing perspective and experiences.
  • Continued Client-partner Relations. To maintain the client partnerships and keep the client relations thriving, communication and transparency provide the guiding virtue. Several methods to stay in touch include quarterly newsletters, conducting user groups throughout different regions, hosting periodic webinars, maintaining an updated Web site, maintaining a social media presence, and making periodic phone contact to ensure the client-partner’s needs are being met. Another key element and constant goal to sustain established client-partner relationships is to work with them to continuously improve products and services.

By embracing these six key elements to building business relationships, not only does a strong bond of trust become established between the two companies, but the desire to maintain a lasting relationship is ensured through the ”why” and ”how” a vendor of choice conducts business.



MiniSoft, Inc. is a global software company specializing in collection management software for legal and professional service firms. They offer extensive reporting and trending capabilities, automatic business processing, seamless integration with Microsoft Outlook, and handling of multiple offices and currencies. Click here for more information.

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