As far as start-up growth is concerned, a lot of entrepreneurs today focus on winning over more customers and clients; however, not many have the skills to retain them. Some companies are too busy marketing themselves and driving excitement that they forget that the key to success in the business environment is customer retention. Believe it or not, it is possible to land more customers without spending a fortune; as well as keep them interested in what you have to offer for a longer period of time. However, to achieve that you must implement several smart strategies; strategies that might help you overcome your competitors without being forced to spend a fortune.
Don’t underestimate the great value of customer retention
If you think customer retention plays a minor role in helping your company develop a sturdy bottom line, think again. Recent reports claim that increasing a customer base with at least 5% can boost profitability by a whopping 75%. And if that’s still not enough to make an impression on you, additional statistical data says that 80% of your start-up’s future revenue depends on roughly 20% of your current customers. Grabbing attention and appealing to new customers is not that easy as it will cost you 5 times more than retaining the current customer that you have now.
Efficient customer retention
A lot of entrepreneurs wrongfully assume that if they have a great service or product and offer a memorable customer experience, retention will start flowing naturally. Sadly, that’s not enough. Keep in mind that your present customers don’t owe you anything; their loyalty can be questioned as nothing ties them to you, your product or brand. Start-ups must learn to ear the loyalty of their customers, constantly and continually.
A productive customer retention program gives you an opportunity to track, promote and identify people who have the highest chances of becoming a long-term, loyal source of revenue. Businesses that provide products are heavily dependent upon customer sales; in their case, retaining customers is paramount.
Avoid misunderstanding you client base
Misreading your customers is a sure way of losing retention rates. And this is not your only problem. Statistical reports emphasize that 80% of today’s start-ups provide some sort of customer support; however, only 8% of customers are engaged and satisfied with the assistance they get. That’s tough to digest, especially since your company depends on positive reviews. To steer clear of misreads, you must center your attention on customer behavior and not on the foretold behavior of a specific demographic.
Web-analytics are incredibly powerful, and when used right they can actually offer useful data. Start-ups should used that data to assess present and past behavior, as well as to be able to make more exact predictions and come up with a fruitful business strategy.
Social media engagement
Unlike most common ways of retaining customers – which come at a high price – social media is a lot cheaper. Interacting with your client base and building retention the right way will help you land more loyal clients. Socializing can have a great impact providing that it is done correctly. The key is to get more personal and stop focusing on building corporate presence. Be the voice of your business and allow your people to get to know you better. Personal interaction – answering their questions, commenting, chatting with them and engaging in debates – is exactly what you need to keep them by your side.
As you build fans on social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc.), it is equally important to establish a relationship. Set up “alerts” to keep you informed and permit you to answer instantly on whatever matter is being discussed. Step by step develop a connection, and start sending the customized “thank you” emails. Don’t pressure them and let things take their own course.
Now that you’ve got their attention, it’s time to advertise. Run relevant promotions and start engaging them with offers that are interesting and productive. The goal here is to opt for pander-free promotions; these are purposefully aimed at rewarding customers and making them feel great about cooperating with your company. Coupon codes, special discounts, weekly promos and gift vouchers are tools you can use as well. Whatever you do, just don’t smother your target audience. Give them just enough to make them come back, and in time your customer base will be filled with loyal buyers.
By Denny Averill of Romax.co.uk!