Customer retention is the main goal for all sorts of businesses.
Happy customers will keep coming back and they will also act as advocates for a company or service by telling others about it, who will (hopefully) continue the cycle.
So, how do you keep the customers you have excited, engaged, and interested? Here are five top techniques.
One of the best ways to retain customers is to find out what they thought about the service/product you supplied. This process will ensure that customers feel listened to and will provide you with valuable information on what you are doing well, and where you can improve.
There are a few different methods for getting feedback. You could collect email addresses and send out a regular customer survey, and /or you could set up a section on your website for reviews. If possible, you could also call your customers and chat with them, which will provide an even more personalised approach (and that leads us to the next technique).
- Stay in touch.
Customers who keep coming back to a brand or business usually cite ‘appreciation’ as one of the reasons for their loyalty. A customer who feels appreciated will respond by thinking of you first when they need a similar product / service again.
The easiest way to stay in touch with clients is to set up a so-called ‘communication calendar’ which will prompt you to call them at a certain time of the year. But remember, don’t overdo it, and become a nuisance!
You can also stay connected with your customer base via a monthly or bi-monthly newsletter which will also provide a platform for you to showcase what else you have going on as a business, highlight promotions, and give customers relatable information about you and your staff etc.
- Build trust.
Trust is essential for retaining customers because people will remember if you let them down and are unlikely to come back to you again. Building trust in your brand takes time and effort but it starts with providing customers with what they want right now and is followed up with going above and beyond expectations whenever possible. Other essential aspects of building trust include reliability, honesty, and effective communication.
These building blocks will create a foundation of trust between you and your client base that will serve you and them for many years.
- Start a community.
One of the most effective long-term strategies for retaining customers is to establish a thriving community around your product on social media.
This involves establishing accounts on the platforms where your customers spend the most time (Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, LinkedIn, Facebook etc.) and engaging with them via content that leverages your expertise and know-how and is also practical, educational, entertaining, and relatable.
Your content strategy needs to be unique, clear, and consistent and accurately reflect your brand’s message and persona. But most of all it should encourage positive interaction between you and your customers, and your customers with each other, turning them all into online ambassadors.
This technique will take some dedication and patience, but the reward will be worth it.
- Say thanks!
Customers who are loyal are usually not looking for anything in return other than your usual excellent customer service, value for money, and dependable products.
However, one of the nicest ways you can show long-term customers how much they mean to you is to simply say thanks.
You can do this via a personalised thank you card or email, or you can do it with special discounts, gifts, exclusive events, vouchers, and sneak peeks. Whatever method you use, you’ll make a lasting impression and show your customers how much you value their loyalty.