According to a poll by ZeroMillion.com, 68% of customers will stop using your services or fail to return if they feel unappreciated. And from the book, [Leading on the Edge of Chaos](https://www.amazon.com/Leading-Edge-Chaos-Critical-Elements/dp/B00008NRH5/ref=sr11?ie=UTF8&qid=1313590769&sr=8-1), Emmett C. Murphy and Mark A. Murphy note that increasing customer retention by 2% can have the same effect as reducing costs by 10%! This is why it is so important to nurture and take care of the current clients you have, regardless of the size of your business or what industry you work in.
Here are a few easy action items that will not only allow you to stay in touch with existing clients but also ensure that they are clients for life!
There are lots of great, easy online templates and email services these days, so you can’t use the excuse that it’s difficult anymore. It’s a cost-effective way to stay in touch with both current and past clients. Make sure the newsletter is branded correctly, include images to make it easier to read/break up the text, and consider including profiles on some of your top or most interesting clients. Include press releases and any big company news as well.
Though sending a newsletter via email is much more cost-effective than mailing a hard copy to a client’s house, don’t skimp on hand-written and signed thank you notes, holiday cards, and/or birthday cards. Not only does this show you care about your clients and that you put more effort into contacting them than sending out a mass email, but it also builds your brand as well as relationships with your clients on a deeper level.
Make sure that your business has a Facebook page and that you link to it from your newsletter and in any emails you send out to clients. There are over 750 million Facebook users, so use a fan page for your business to reach clients everywhere on a daily basis. 70% of small business owners are using Facebook for marking purposes. Twitter also keeps your clients in the loop and up-to-date on news, sales, and other random happenings at your company so perfect the skill of writing concise – you only have 140 characters! Check out this cool infographic to learn more about the numbers behind the social media wave.
Even if you don’t think you can write like Hemingway or JK Rowling, a blog is a crucial part to your business’s success. A blog allows your clients to see a side of you that your polished website and Facebook page may not allude to. Possible blog topics to get you started include:
– ”Behind the scenes” or “behind-the-counter” photographs and funny stories
– Case studies of super star clients
– Industry news and updates
– Random tidbits that relate to your own personal interests
Who doesn’t like earning a discount – or better yet, cold, hard cash? Referral or incentive programs keep your clients coming back. Whether it’s a frequent-shopper punch card or a store credit if they bring in a friend who purchases something, the creativity is up to you and the options are endless!