client-retention

Did you know that a 5% increase in your customer retention can increase your profitability up to 125%?

Many businesses focus all their marketing efforts on attracting new clients, however, statistics show that getting new business costs 6-7 times more than keeping your existing clients happy. Incorporating strategies for repeat business and referrals can seriously impact your profit margins. Particularly now that reputation is firmly in the hands of the consumer, whose power to strengthen or undermine your brand with online reviews and recommendations has increased exponentially.

The first 100 days of onboarding a client is critical. If you can keep your new client for 100 days then, as Joey Coleman demonstrates, you will likely have a customer for life and potentially a new ambassador for your business. So before you concentrate too hard on how to get all these new clients it is well worth making some critical decisions about what you are going to do with the ones who have already signed up. Let’s talk about the nitty gritty details of how to keep your clients. Giving them a reason to come back again and again must be a key part of a successful brand strategy.

The team at Sauté Creative is deeply passionate about building and accelerating brands, and for us the secret to keeping your clients is by focusing on four key things:

1. Frequency

Stay top of mind with your clients. Evaluate the appropriate frequency with which to communicate and develop a baseline strategy among the different levels and segments of your clients. If your core base of clients are regulars, then every touch should be unchanging and you should have a mechanism to remember them by name, know how they like their coffee, and make it effortless for them to reach you; go out of your way to make sure they get exactly what they need. This overarching feeling that they’re left with will create familiarity and comfort. They know what to expect and when they think about you they remember how great you made them feel.

On the other hand, if your clients only interact with you on occasion, then their experience should be incredible and impactful. Give them a memory that will last until the next time they want your service or product. Find palatable ways to stay in touch and remind them that you are thinking about them because you appreciated their business. It is worth using a variety of channels to communicate – it doesn’t always have to be the dreaded email inbox that brings you to the forefront of their mind.

2. Consistency

There’s nothing more attractive than a person who knows who they are and owns it; the same can be said for a company. Your brand’s messaging, design, services, client interactions, employees – everything – should all communicate a consistent and confident message. Get to the core of what attracts your clients and then make sure that you stay true to it.

Then examine every interaction between your clients and your brand. If you stay consistent with your message, how you serve, and your core values, then your clients will create memories with you and become fiercely loyal.

3. Range

Vary your interactions with customers across several key mediums of communication. Join the conversation and communicate in the ways that your clients want to engage with your brand whether that be via email newsletters, YouTube videos, Instagram photos or text message announcements. Individual human interactions across a variety of channels will deepen the communication level and give the sense of a multi-faceted relationship. Familiarity. Authenticity. etc.

Additionally, close the barrier to entry. Being accessible is crucial to delivering high quality customer service and support. Provide communication options for your customers to get their questions answers or their problems resolved quickly and effectively. Remember, customers are willing to pay a premium for high level service and will leave forever for lack thereof. Studies show that consumers prefer to communicate via:
[bar_graph]
[bar title=”Phone” percent=”61″ color=”Accent-Color” id=”b1″]
[bar title=”Email” percent=”60″ color=”Accent-Color” id=”b2″]
[bar title=”Live Chat” percent=”57″ color=”Accent-Color” id=”b3″]
[bar title=”Online Communities” percent=”51″ color=”Accent-Color” id=”b4″]
[bar title=”‘Click-to-Call’ Support” percent=”34″ color=”Accent-Color” id=”b5″]
[/bar_graph]

4. Connection

Make each connection and touch with your customers meaningful. Strive to always be of value by providing resources, information, tools and tips that are of interest or address their pain points. Are they looking for excitement, dependability, or comfort? When you know what your clients want, provide it with style and class, add more value than they were expecting and show them that you get it.

In his book The Ten Principles Behind Great Customer Experiences, Matt Watkinson asks some really appealing and inspiring questions such as “What can we do at this stage to bring a human face or aspect to the business? How can we make the customer see us as real people?” and even more novelly, “How can this stage allow the customer to express their individuality?” You have a CRM or at the very least, a spreadsheet with your client list. Collect, analyse, review and implement changes to your process on the basis of real data with as many details as you can manage. Preferences, interests, connections. Personalized experiences will underscore how much your value clients individually and reinforce their sense of loyalty toward you.

Map out the journey that your clients make, from finding you and deciding to use your products or services through their experiences in that first 100 days. Follow it step by step to evaluate the match with their expectations (exceed these if you can) and the points of friction (evaluate by collecting feedback). plot points on that journey like bus stops, carefully considering the frequency, consistency, range and connection value in that first 3 months. How can you thank them just for being around? How can you make this experience valuable to them?

Increase Your Client Retention

If you follow these four steps and create a plan to actively communicate (and listen) to your clients, then you should see an increase in engagement, customer loyalty and ultimately, profitability. So, what’s the moral of the story? Don’t neglect and underestimate the value of your current client. Download our infographic to learn more shocking statistics about client retention rates.

Client-Retention-by-the-Numbers