How to Keep ‘Em: Customer Retention Strategies
A few months ago, three strategists were gathered before a meeting discussing a brand one of them was wearing. Extremely enthused about the new purchase he’d made, he encouraged everyone in the huddle to try it. Despite being hesitant, he tried one. There was a delivery issue with the item which the company helped him resolve. Their quality service led to him trying a second product; he was a fan.
His newfound love for the brand resulted in three more purchases in the last six months.
The Benefits of Customer Retention
Though many don’t realize it, keeping existing clients happy (aka customer retention) is essential for any business. Building customer loyalty is critical to keeping your business afloat, considering that attracting new customers costs you money. “Increasing customer retention rates by 5% increases profits by 25% to 95%,” according to research done by Frederick Reichheld of Bain & Company. Aside from the benefits of customer retention, new prospects are costly.” Depending on which study you believe, and what industry you’re in, acquiring a new customer is anywhere from five to 25 times more expensive than retaining an existing one.”
So, how does one find clients like the strategist I mentioned above? As they say, “if you build it, they will come.” Check out some of the things that you can begin to implement to foster customer retention.
Customer Retention Beings at the Onboarding
Though this won’t apply to all businesses, this is a crucial point for agencies. Agencies are required to brief clients on their procedures, products, and services to manage expectations.
This includes client introductions, defining objectives, analyzing current efforts, accessing the landscapes, and eventual campaign launches.
Each industry will vary. For example, for eCommerce clients, we can access current reach and profit and determine future margins. eCommerce will also be asked for detailed questions about products, seasonality, and messaging.
Other things you will discuss on an onboarding will be:
Each of these will have an impact on your campaigns and will help your client understand the reasoning behind each setting.
Done correctly, the client will understand how each strategy, campaign, and feature applied gets them closer to reaching their goals and connecting with interested users.
Get Customer Feedback
If, after reading the previous point, you aren’t sure how helpful your Onboarding process is, you might want to ask your clients.
You need to figure out the best way to get this information from your clients. Feedback is the gap between being good and being better. Providing insightful information creates trust with leads to customer loyalty. You can do this by sending out a survey, asking them to participate in a focus group or review a service or product. Their comments will help make your approach smarter. The requests may not even be logical or easy to anticipate, but it will be useful.
Find out if your clients like your processes. If they do, do they think they are efficient? What could they do without? What’s a pain point for them each month? What if the most tedious thing on your list is something they don’t care for? Is there another feature or metric that would be more useful to them?
Pick their brain. Technology has accelerated the speed by which industry evolves, it’s important to stay aligned with your client and the way their business is changing. Get the information that you need to improve and do it every so often to ensure that they feel appreciated and heard.
Reward Loyal Customers
Ironically, rewarding customers for their loyalty only strengthens customer loyalty. Would you shy away from receiving a reward? We didn’t think so. Focus on a % of your customers, partners, clients, who spend more or have been with you longer than the rest. Make it a point to thank them for their loyalty. Not only will they be grateful, but every existing customer you have is a potential growth opportunity for you.
These are clients that are already contributing to your business, and adding services is more ideal than removing them. Celebrating them is a must. These practices foster customer loyalty and lifetime value.
There are plenty of brands that are founded on great ideas. Mission statements that once explained are profound, innovative, and straightforward. However, a lot of the time, brands don’t take the time to provide that kind of content that connects with customers.
Constant check-ins and connection leads to customer retention because you are always in the know of where they are. Happy clients lead to more clients. We’re all on the look for people, brands, products, and experiences aligned with our beliefs. The more of that you feed me, the better the chance that I begin to understand your why. Couple that with positive product experience and closer to having an unofficial rep leading watercooler chat with your name on it.
Each of the points mentioned above should help you improve your customer loyalty and customer retention rate. Existing clients are investing in your business, it’s in their interest to help you improve your services, and it’s in yours to keep them at bay.