Many businesses put a lot of money and effort into the first (attraction) and second (acquisition) phases of marketing believing that a constant flow of new clients will be the way to success and profitability. While those are important phases of marketing, for long-term success, resources and attention must be spent on the third marketing phase (retention). Ignoring this stage of marketing will keep costs high and margins low. This is because the highest cost of marketing is in the attraction and acquisition stages. The retention phase of marketing is keeping clients buying, and referring new clients who are “pre-sold” on you and your offerings. This reduces your attraction and acquisition costs and increases your profitability.
So what keeps your clients coming back to you, encourages them to refer, and makes them feel good about doing those things? Your relationship, which must be fostered consistently over time. As you develop your relationship with your clients, they feel more comfortable with you, trust you more, and even have greater confidence in your abilities. Besides delivering great service, there are a couple of strategies that are perfect for cultivating that relationship. The next few blog posts will focus on the top 5 retention strategies most small businesses can use as part of their retention marketing plans. Here is the first one:
Retention Strategy #1: Keep in Touch
Communicating regularly with your clients allows you to alert clients to new products/services and special offers, maintain top-of-mind awareness and deepen your relationship by sharing information of value. Remember, out of sight is out of mind, so you want stay in front of your clients on a regular and consistent basis. Did you know that studies prove that most clients leave a vendor because of lack of communication, and most new prospects make purchasing decisions based on currently available options rather than investigating what previous vendors might now be offering?
So, how do you keep in touch with clients and prospects?
How to communicate depends on the clientele, but you cannot go wrong with a newsletter as your basic communication vehicle. While electronic newsletters are fine for monthly touches, they cannot be the only way we communicate with our clients because email is too easily ignored, and rarely read even by happy clients. Personal notes, phone calls, visits, social media and hard copy newsletters (even if that hard copy is only once a quarter) as well as an electronic newsletter keep us connected with our clients.
Proof This Works
I’d like to share with you a personal testimony to keeping in touch with clients, and especially prospects. Over the course of the last 14 years I’ve been in business, I have always done an electronic newsletter in order to keep in touch with clients and prospects. Prospects I’ve met (at a class or who requested a copy of my free report) who aren’t yet ready to start working together, but wish for me to let them know about future events and services, get added to my newsletter (always with permission). Over the course of the last 18 months, I have had four prospects call me because they were ready for help with their business and marketing. Four people who were on my newsletter list for 1-5 years (yes, one had been on my list five years). When they were ready, I was top-of-mind because I kept showing up in their inbox and mailbox consistently.
This can happen for you too…but only if you are sending out a newsletter.
Sounds more complex and difficult than it really is. This month The Center for Guilt-Free Success is offering training on Simple New Ideas for Newsletters via webinar on October 12th and an in-person seminar in Deer Park on October 31st. Get all the details or register at http://bit.ly/newsletters-for-biz. Come join us and learn how to plan and produce your newsletter quickly and easily as well as an effective alternative to traditional newsletters that will surprise you.
Some material Retention Strategies © 2010-2017 Veronika Noize. All rights reserved. Used with permission.