“Hey, it’s me… your old customer… remember me?
I bought from you a while back. I’m in need of your service again, but I didn’t know if your business was even in existence anymore, nor did I even remember your company name. I decided to go with another company who actually cared about my business.”
This is how the story goes. You celebrate over the fact that you made a sale to a new customer. Either a product is delivered or a service is performed. An order is filled out, and that customer now goes into a manila file folder in the office file cabinet. A year passes. As you wipe off the dust that has collected on your file cabinet over this period of time, you now ask, “What ever happened to that customer, and why haven’t I heard from them?” I’m here to give you a reality check. Most likely, that customer moved on because they simply felt that you didn’t value their business. They switched to a competitor of yours who actively took the time to continue the conversation, even after the product was delivered or the service was performed.
This makes perfect sense when you consider that the majority of customers come to you because they developed a relationship with you prior to purchasing your offerings, or were referred to you by a friend or business colleague. When you fail to open the gates of communication and keep them informed of your brand existence, you no longer become the company that comes to mind when the need for your service arises once again.
The goal of marketing executives is to stretch their marketing budget as far as they can in an effort to gain the maximum benefit using minimal amount of resources. Without unleashing the power of marketing, any opportunity or potential for business growth goes out the window. However, our focus toward acquiring new customers is oftentimes so strong that we become blinded by the reality that 80% of your business is right in front of your face.
Instead of spending the majority of your time and resources going after new clients who must be persuaded and convinced that you are a reputable business and capable of delivering above and beyond consumer expectations, why not capitalize on those who have already chosen you over your competitors at least once before? Why not engage your customers with your business and continue the dialogue? Maybe It’s Time to Start Dating Your Customers.
Nurturing, retaining, communicating and maintaining the relationship with your existing customers is the key to keeping the sales rolling in, especially when, on average, repeat customers spend 33% more than new customers and are also more inclined to refer additional business your way.
It’s not rocket science. It doesn’t require any strategic thinking or a reallocation of your marketing budget. It’s actually easier than you think. All it requires is a simple email every so often, or perhaps a follow up phone call every now and then will do the trick. Pick up the phone and start calling. Make that call just to say “Hi, how are you doing. I’m here if you need anything.”
Email newsletters are the most effective method of outreach to keep your customers in tune with news of your business, new products or services you have on the market, blogs or press releases that discuss insight into your field of expertise, or anything else that will provide a value-added benefit to your customers. Never underestimate the value of an effective, relevant, and informative subject line to capture the attention of your most prized asset, your customer database. In addition to this, here are some additional Tips for Building a High Quality Email List and Newsletter Following.
So what’s the hold up?
Acknowledging that your imploding in the basics of simply generating sales and have been screwing up for the last year or so, will not get you any closer to your goals. Do something about it. You just blew your opportunity to increase your sales by 50%. Failing to simply keep in touch with your existing customers, is unconscionable. Now pick up the phone, and make that call. A good customer is a terrible thing to waste.