It takes months to find a customer and only seconds to lose one.
Great customer service. It’s a buzz phrase we hear all the time—but are you really making the most of your customer relationships? Of course most of us are constantly thinking of ways to gain new customers, but holding onto existing customers (and wowing them!) can be even more important.
Not convinced? Harvard Business School notes that increasing customer retention by just 5% increases profits 25% to 95%. Whoa. Plus, 80% of companies proclaim they offer excellent customer service, but only 8% of their customers agreed. Yikes.
Here are a few ways to get on the same page with your customers and ensure you aren’t missing the customer retention boat.
- Repeat customers are your goldmine. They’re less expensive than new customers, they spend more, and they’re your brand ambassadors.
- Great customer service goes beyond simply offering something shiny to get them in the door—it’s about intuitively knowing and deeply understanding what they want, then delivering that consistently. To help you get inside your customers’ heads, here are 12 Books to Read If You Want to Understand Customers Better to add to your reading list.
- Understanding your customers is one of the most powerful things you can do for customer retention. Do so by avoiding these 5 marketing mistakes.
- If you feel like something is missing in your relationship, trust might be the key. Check out these great ways to establish, measure and build customer trust.
- Still not convinced customer retention should be your focus? It’s “Cheaper to Keep ‘Em”—repeat customers literally pay for themselves.
- Win the War on Customer Churn: While 55% of current marketing budgets are spent gaining new customers, there’s only a 5% to 20% chance of making a new sell. Yet there’s a 60% chance of a repeat sale…so WHY does customer retention only account for 12% of most marketing budgets?!
- How do top B2B companies ensure customer retention and repeat business? These 3 important ways they wow their customers.
For ongoing ideas to hold onto your customers be sure to follow Cultivate on LinkedIn.
Today, the decision to buy is no longer a moment–it’s a process. Are you truly connecting with your prospects? Are you engaging with your customers before, during, and even after the sale? Download our FREE White Paper on Growth Cycle Marketing and you’ll learn:
- 14 ways to engage your prospects to drive home the sale
- How to influence your customer’s decision to buy
- Why your current customers are your biggest asset
- The exact type of content your prospects and customers want
- How this proven, 5-stage process attracts new customers and grows your business
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Have you heard? Great website content attracts more prospects and results in higher conversion rates. More customers? Woohoo! But…
How do you effectively create and shell out GREAT content to draw in those customers?
You can’t just put stuff on a webpage and expect people to find it by magic. (Ok, you can, but it’s unlikely to happen.)
Here are 5 ways to (really) Make the Magic happen…
1. Offer Extras Prospects WANT. Everybody loves free stuff, and enriched content (like an eBook or white paper) can work wonders for your lead pipeline—but ONLY if you’re offering up tactical content your potential customers really want. Either give away your content for free, in exchange for their precious email address (Presto! A new lead!) –OR– launch a special giveaway for an information-laden eBook across different social media channels to engage your audience on a broader spectrum.
(Abracadabra: Here’s everything you need to know about How to Run a Successful Social Media Sweepstakes.)
2. Provide Answers. The majority of people search the web for answers to specific questions. The more in-depth information you can provide about topics they’re looking for, the more eyes you’ll get on your page. The longer visitors stay, the more likely they are to buy from you, or at least return for more information. Providing information builds trust, and people buy from businesses they trust. Be the authority. They’ll love you for it.
(Abracadabra: How do you find out what your prospects want to know? Listening in on social media is a great way to keep your finger on the pulse of the market and inform your business decisions.)
3. Hold Webinars. People love to participate in webinars, especially when they’re on a not-so-easy-to-understand subject. Give your prospects an opportunity to ask questions live and you give them a voice: answer their questions and they’ll know they’re heard and that your business cares. Plus, displaying recorded webinars on your website allows visitors to find out what other people are asking. You demonstrate your expertise and build credibility during that delicate research phase.
(Abracadabra: A report commissioned by Adobe found webinars are effective throughout the buying cycle, so check out these tips for a successful webinar.)
Want to learn more about this mysterious buy cycle? No need to pull a rabbit out of your hat. Just download our FREE Growth Cycle Marketing white paper to better connect with your prospects before, during and after the sale.
4. Be a Tease. Think about how news programs entice viewers to tune in: “Are you at risk for Ebola? Find out at 11.” If they just stated a conclusion like, “Don’t worry, you’re not at risk for Ebola,” fewer viewers would tune in. Their goal is to get your attention—and your viewership—by adding a sense of urgency to what would otherwise be fairly ordinary reporting. But you don’t have to follow the example of our hyperactive media—it’s better to be measured and honest than simply sensational. For your business, post enticing teasers with a clear call to action.
(Abracadabra: Last year, Twitter offered advice about the most effective calls to action on Twitter. Check it out!)
5. Offer Fresh Content—Often! One of the most important things you can do to attract visitors is keep your website new and updated. Even your old customers will get bored with the same content day after day. Serve up piping hot fare fresh every week and they’ll keep coming back for more.
(Abracadabra: While you’re working to build regular, fresh content, pretty please avoid the crap. If you have to choose between quantity and quality, pick quality.)
If your website isn’t bringing in the traffic, there’s no need to wave your magic wand—instead, it may be time to rethink your content strategy. Too many businesses make their web and social media offerings all about themselves and not about their customers. While telling your story is important, always do so with a focus on how you can help your customers—then watch your content work its magic!