Whether you run an established company or an entrepreneur just getting started, the importance of building relationships with your customers cannot be overstated. Customer retention is a metric that measures how many of your customers return to you once they have used your services.
This is one of the most closely monitored metrics for any company since customers returning means that its base is not shrinking. Greater focus can be paid to activities that involve growing customers rather than retaining them.
Building client relationships is among the most critical parts of your job, regardless of your company’s role. Given below are some ways in which you can do so.
Communicate With The Customer
As a salesperson, you can often get stuck in the trap of unilaterally promoting your company. Be it through conventional advertising or video selling, you simply put your video out in the open market and wait for something to happen. When doing so, it might not surprise you if you do not meet your customer acquisition or customer retention targets regularly.
Today, merely getting a prospective customer to know about your brand isn’t enough. The customer must feel a connection with your brand and a belief in what it stands for. Convincing an old customer, or a prospective customer, about your brand is only possible if you regularly communicate with them.
The importance of one-on-one communication in business is often understated, especially when a company has thousands of customers. However, simply touching base with old customers once in a while, whether through a call or a video email, can be useful in making customers realize that you care about them. This increases the chances that they will utilize your services again.
Value The Time of Your Customer
Have you stood in a queue in front of a store selling a highly-coveted item? How many times have you had to wait on a call with a customer care center, only to be disconnected at the end because not enough operators were available? How did these experiences make you feel?
To understand the chances that a customer will come back to you, try to put yourself in the customer’s shoes. Delivering positive experiences to your customer is essential. Still, even more, important is acknowledging that your customer has a life outside your product and must not need to spend long hours getting a service changed or a small kink repaired.
If your customer has to spend hours on any activity associated with your product, it creates a negative word of mouth. There are several ways to ensure that you value your customer’s time.
If a customer calls you and not enough operators are available, the least that can be done is to communicate an estimated time to the customer or the customer’s place in the queue to get on with other work without stressing about missing the operator.
Even better, if the waiting time is prohibitively high, you can give the customer an option to register their name so that you may call back as soon as the next operator becomes available.
Make The Customer’s Voice Matter
As the employee of a company dealing directly with customers, you can often forget old customers searching for new ones. Given the amount of competition in the free market, it wouldn’t be surprising if the customer forgets you too. A particularly great way to always stay in the customer’s sights is to make the customer’s voice matter.
This can be taken by seeking feedback from the customer regularly, but most importantly, not treating this feedback as yet another document to be ignored. Suppose you take the customer’s feedback seriously and get back to them about any reservations that they might have regarding your service.
In that case, the customer is treated as a stakeholder and your chances of retaining the customer increase. Conversely, if the customer’s feedback, predominantly if negative, is not given due respect, the customer won’t think twice before going shopping for new firms.
The Importance of Staying Positive
Most sales representatives are taught the importance of retaining a smile throughout their conversation with a client. They aren’t taught that clients are often great at making out a salesperson whose conversation is earnest and one who isn’t. Smiling your way through a conversation is not essential if your smile is not meant.
What is crucial, on the other hand, is staying positive throughout the conversation. Use positive words and language when interacting with a customer, and always refrain from an outright refusal.
Especially when dealing with criticism from a customer, it can often be hard to remain positive in front of an angry or annoyed customer. Always give such a customer the belief that their voice matters and that all their recommendations will be considered seriously.
Reward Your Customers’ Loyalty
The presence of a good loyalty program can not just be a great draw for potential new customers but also ensures that old customers stay firmly in your court. Loyalty programs ensure that old customers are rewarded simply for staying with your company for long and that they spend more to redeem their loyalty perks.
It is a well-known fact in the industry that old customers spend more than new ones, and loyalty programs only increase this spending significantly. Generally, loyalty programs are tiered and reward older customers more than new ones. You can also introduce rewards for all customers, such as offers on birthdays or anniversaries, games, etc.
The importance of retaining customers for any business cannot be understated. Regardless of how awesome your product is, if you don’t work toward retaining customers for the next version of your product, you are practically ensuring that you have to start from scratch.
Customers matter to you, and you must make them realize that they do. This can be done through as small a task as regularly touching base with them and as significant a task as setting up reward programs. Whichever type of customer relationship activity suits your firm best, the above tips will help you always ensure that you do not lose customers to the competition.