Customer retention can make or break your business. Statistics suggest that improving customer retention by just 5% can improve a company’s profitability by up to 95%. The key then, to continually making profit year after year, is simply this: you must focus on existing clients to get them back more often, spending more. Their repeat business will boost your earnings and new clients will start pouring through the doors, drawn by the loyalty of your customers to see what you have to offer them. To help you out we’ve compiled a list of the top three strategies you can use to improve customer retention.
Facebook and Twitter
Various social media platforms have ushered in an era of customer engagement to a degree never experienced before. Social media is one of the premium ways to increase your company’s exposure and market your business. Miishka, a small Australian online retailer, built a following of 80,000 fans in less than two years via a company Facebook page, providing the lifeblood of a successful business without the owner even having to open an online store. Companies such as KISSmetrics use Twitter to provide insightful links to their target market, helping them to develop a loyal following of 113,000. Other companies use Instagram accounts to educate their customers on their brand lifestyle, allowing them to connect with their followers each and every day. This unique way of marketing can put your business in the eye line of your customers’ family and friends, strengthening the trust of potential new customers, which is like gold for building loyalty amongst your niche demographic. Positive reviews on your Facebook page, for example, will be seen by hundreds of connections and can massively increase referrals.
Create a Blog
Sharing is caring, and the best brands give away everything they know for free. 37Signals’ Signal v Noise was a widely read blog over a period of five years before they released their first product, Basecamp. This engagement gave them the chance to build trust with their readers and clients, and gave them a head start when they had a product to sell. They now have fanatical fans the world over, many gained during their early years of blogging.
Many companies are intimidated by the idea of starting a blog, but it really can be a great way to build customer engagement and to demonstrate that you’re an authority in your chosen profession. A blog will introduce customers to the kind of business your run and give them an idea of your ethos and aims. Don’t overthink it; as long as you offer interesting content – something that you would want to read yourself – then you’re on the right path. Blogging should be fun and creative, allowing you to provide something free of charge for your customers to enjoy, which will generate goodwill.
Allow customers to add their own comments and make suggestions, as this will build engagement and good working relationships, and might even give you some constructive criticism to help you improve your business.
Send Out ‘Tips’ Emails
Another way to share free, useful content is through a weekly or monthly ‘magazine’, delivered via email, sharing the latest news and tips. Net-a-porter, the world’s leading eCommerce brand, spends the majority of its marketing efforts on such endeavours, sharing great knowledge to build trust and a loyal customer base that keeps on buying. If you run a food or restaurant business, try sharing cooking tips à la Jamie Oliver, showing consumers how they can best use your product. These emails tend to work as they give clients a reason to come back and buy your offerings to use them in the way you recommend.
If you don’t feel confident in performing digital customer retention marketing yourself, there are lots of experts out there to help, from specialist salon marketing businesses such as Phorest Salon Software, aimed specifically at spas and salons, to institutions which offer courses to business owners and professionals to teach them all the tricks of the trade.