There’s no doubt that your sales team is always calling, sending
e-mails, following up and doing whatever they can to capture new customers, but during this process there is one critical point that gets lost in the shuffle – your existing clients. There’s a danger of your sales team putting so much focus on attracting new customers that your existing customers will start to feel neglected.
Initially you may think that new customers should be your primary focus as you’re trying to grow your business, but there are numerous statistics that show why keeping your current customers happy is important. Bain and Co.’s research shows that a 5% increase in customer retention can increase a company’s profitability by 75%, and Gartner Group statistics reveal that 80% of your company’s future revenue will come from just 20% of your existing customers.
The numbers sound nice, but what exactly does this mean for business owners? At the end of the day, you need to take a look at how you’re currently servicing your customers and see if there are ways you can improve the existing relationship. Here are a few tricks that I’ve learned over the years that will help make your current customers happy.
Go Above and Beyond – This first point goes without saying, but over time it’s easy to let your customer service levels drop. A lot of the time this drop is so gradual that you don’t notice it until it’s too late – which is when your customer decides to move on. Make sure that you reinforce the importance of top notch customer service to your team by sharing success stories or great examples that you’ve heard or experienced firsthand.
Appreciate Them When They Don’t Expect it – If I was to take a guess, I’d say that a majority of you send some form of appreciation to your customers during Christmas time. While that’s fine, what people don’t realize is that everyone expects something during the holidays, so in reality your gift that was supposed to make an emotional impact probably won’t be remembered for too long. Instead, why not take the gifts that you were supposed to send during the Christmas season and send them on March 24th, meaning no specific holiday or reason behind them. The gesture is sure to turn some heads, and will definitely leave a longer lasting impression.
Implement a Loyalty Program – A loyalty program is one of the best ways that you can keep your existing customers. An interesting article from Help Scout shows that if you want to get a customer heavily involved with a customer loyalty program, you should automatically get them started. Pick a relevant date (birthday, anniversary of contract, etc) and simply send them an e-mail telling them how much you appreciate their business and that you’ve enrolled them in your “VIP” program. There’s no doubt that they’ll appreciate the gesture and stay loyal to your brand.
The takeaway you should communicate to your team is that at the end of the day, keeping your current customers happy is equally as important as finding new customers, so make sure not to lack in either category. How are you currently making your current customers happy? I’d love to discuss some techniques in the comments.