Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Top 5 Customer Loyalty Tips

They say obtaining new customers is always more expensive then keeping the ones you already have.  Invest in building the loyalty of your current customers.

1.  Communication

Keep in touch with your customers.  You need to send communications to be top of mind. Send emails, use direct mail, put in a phone call, or post on your digital channels. This doesn’t always need to be advertising or promotions. Share good news about charity events or provide useful tips. Become a resource that your customers come to for your great info, your fun personality, or unique offers.

2.  Incentives

Create a reason for customers to come back with a frequent buyer program. Typical programs offer a free service, free gift, or generous discount after a certain number of visits or purchases. You can even create VIP levels based on annual spend and reward each level with special prices or frequent discounts. The bigger savings at the higher spend levels. Determine what program is meaningful for your clients and then reference tip #1 and communicate your program!

3.  Anticipate Needs

The key to great service is trying to meet a need before they even know they need it.  Look at your business through your customer’s eyes.  Run through a typical client interaction with your business. From the time the client enters the location until they leave, strive to create an effortless yet memorable experience. Create that perfect experience every time.

4.  Staff Training

Educated staff drive that seamless experience. Invest in continuing education, product training, and customer service policies. Your staff will easily address customer questions or concerns by knowing their craft, products and procedures inside and out. Empower employees to do what it takes to make customers happy.

5.  Reframe

No matter what you do, not all customers will be happy campers.  Allowing customers to vent while you respectfully listen is a good first step. Words such as, “I’m so sorry you feel that way” or “Thank you for sharing this” can go a long way to defusing the situation. Generally customers want to feel heard and respected.  Reframing any negative into a positive learning experience is a good approach.

Customer loyalty secures your business and builds your brand.  Take the time to grow your loyalty efforts and reap the rewards!

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