Apr 2, 2020

5 Tips for Maintaining Partner Relationships During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Relationships are the oil of the brand licensing industry--invaluable and necessary to fuel successful partnerships. The current global health crisis has left some brand licensing professionals with a low tank, as they adapt to new communication techniques and reassess the viability of their agreements. While conference calls and emails may offer temporary fixes, licensing pros looking to come out on top will need concrete tactics. That includes tools for ensuring their partners remain dedicated to achieving a collective goal.  

By supporting customers as they navigate an unprecedented event, brand licensing professionals can improve the quality of your existing relationships, develop joint tactics to prevent losses and emerge from the crisis poised for growth. 

Below, 5 tips to help you manage your customer relationships during the COVID-19 crisis:

1. Keep in touch

It’s more crucial than ever to check-in with your partners to understand their rapidly changing needs. Governmental provisions, economies, and companies change each day--the more in tune you are and the more data you collect, the better equipped you are to help them. 

2. Listen

When you reach out to your partners, listen more than you normally would. Partners are likely to share critical information that can make or break your program. Determine the best way to respond by assessing partner needs and leveraging your capabilities. This may involve follow-up questions and new tasks for internal teams to show clients that you can react to their unique needs.

3. Be empathetic

As a followup to 1 and 2, it’s crucial that when you check in with your partners, you do so with the understanding that everyone is affected by and reacting to the current situation in different ways. Your most important task is to look for trends and find common solutions that help as many partners as possible.

4. Set unique goals

Help your customers determine the best way to navigate their unique situation or a compromise that would help you move your licensing deal forward. By offering quick resolutions, you set milestones from which progress can be tracked, recorded, and celebrated, in contrast to an often difficult-to-navigate crisis.

5. Offer help

Finally, it’s important to remember that, above all else, your partners should see you as a tool to help them through the current economic climate. If partners look to you as a leader, they will be more likely to hold on with you through this unpredictable journey and stick around after it ends.

Bonus tip: Be a bright spot!

At this time, people are seeking human connection and opportunities to make their days a little brighter. Try replicating real-world activities with, happy hours, lunches or coffee breaks. If video calls aren’t your forte, try exchanging humorous memes or video clips, if not articles or learnings that are helping you navigate the current situation more positively. 

To learn how Flowhaven is helping brand licensing professionals support all of their partner relationships to book a demo today.

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