As 2018 comes to a close and we evaluate what worked and what did not work in our business, as well as what we will change next year, our relationships with our customers and clients should be at the top of the list.
Despite research and statistics that are readily available on the importance of retaining customers, many small businesses continue to allocate large chunks of their budget to customer acquisition. In fact, 44% of companies focus on customer acquisition compared with 18% who focus on retention.
Understandably, you will lose customers and clients for one reason or the other. So it’s important to have systems in place to attract new clients and customers.
Maintain Your Customer Base
Have you ever thought of the difference it could make if you were to focus on customer retention as your primary way of maintaining your customer base?
In a recent conversation with a small business owner and a potential client who wants to increase his visibility to reach more of his ideal customers, I was exploring what systems he had in place. He revealed that his primary source of business at the moment was as a subcontractor in a specialized niche. Large contracting companies hire him to do this work for their customers. His second source of current business was through word of mouth referrals.
After listening carefully, I asked about his follow-up system. There was only silence. He had no system in place to continue to build the relationship with his existing network. There was no telling how much business he was leaving on the table because he did not have a system to create top of mind awareness. By not following-up, he was not able to go the extra mile to make his customers feel special and assure them that they were an important part of his business.
Sadly, that is true for many small business owners. Many times it’s not their fault. They do not know what to do or they lack the resources, including time, to make it happen.
Customer Acquisition and Retention
Today, in my last blog post for the year, I thought I’d share some really inspiring customer retention quotes, and encourage you to select one for each month. Focus on that single quote each month. Analyze it and strategize with your team, if you have one, to decide how you will implement this quote in your business for the month.
Keep a record of your strategies and the results so as to determine what worked best, and with whom. Perhaps by the end of 2019, you could see a significant improvement in customer retention rates.
Remember that loyalty encourages loyalty, so if you expect your customers to be loyal, you, as a business owner, must show that you appreciate them and are loyal to them as well.
Customer Retention Quotes
Your customer doesn’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. ~ Damon Richards
Statistics suggest that when customers complain, business owners and managers ought to get excited about it. The complaining customer represents a huge opportunity for more business. ~ Zig Ziglar
Making promises and keeping them is a great way to build a brand. ~Seth Godin
The keys to brand success are self-definition, transparency, authenticity, and accountability. ~ Simon Mainwaring
Merely satisfying customers will not be enough to earn their loyalty. Instead, they must experience exceptional service worthy of their repeat business and referral. Understand the factors that drive this customer revolution. ~ Rick Tate
As a brand marketer, I'm a big believer in ‘branding the customer experience’, not just selling the service. - John Sculley
Profit in business comes from repeat customers; customers that boast about your product and service, and that bring friends with them. ~ W. Edwards Deming
Get closer than ever to your customers. So close that you tell them what they need well before they realize it themselves. ~ Steve Jobs
The easiest and most powerful way to increase customer loyalty is really very simple. Make your customers happy. ~ Kevin Stirtz
When a customer is upset, remember that you're dealing with a person, not a problem. ~ Marilyn Suttle
Choose actions that show the customer that they matter. ~ Marilyn Suttle
You don’t earn loyalty in a day. You earn loyalty day-by-day. ~ Jeffrey Gitomer
Getting service right is more than just a nice to do; it's a must do. American consumers are willing to spend more with companies that provide outstanding service - ultimately, great service can drive sales and customer loyalty. ~ Jim Bush
Every day we’re saying, 'How can we keep this customer happy?’ How can we get ahead in innovation by doing this because if we don't, somebody else will. ~ Bill Gates
When you can show concern about what matters to your customer, that's Business to Customer Loyalty, and you can bet on it, you've just acquired a customer for life. ~ Albert Houtum-Schindler
As you keep in mind that a 5% increase in customer retention increases your profits by 25 – 95%, it makes strategic business sense that as entrepreneurs and small business owners we do our very best to focus on retaining our customers and helping them to become our loyal advocates.
If you’re a small business owner or entrepreneur who’d like to learn how you can create a simple strategy to implement this easily and effortlessly, go ahead and schedule a time on my calendar or email me directly at Yvonne [@] YvonneA.Jones.com with the subject of the email : Customer Retention Strategy. I’ll reply within 24 hours to schedule your complimentary Customer Retention Strategy session.
In the meantime, claim your copy of “Relationship Marketing: Key to Small Business Success” at www.50andWiserCoaching.com/smallbizsuccess