Business managers looking to implement a customer retention plan already grasp the vital fact that keeping customers buying over and over again is how to become tenable. No matter how wonderful your products or services, you must dedicate at least one or two employees to focusing on customer retention. These employees pay attention to the long-term relationship with your customers in order to prevent high customer churn rates and to maximize sales opportunities. Creating a plan with a standardized routine helps you achieve both these goals while keeping clients happy and committed to your brand.
Benefits of a Customer Retention Plan and Standardized Routine
A customer retention plan does more than just minimize customer churn or increase your revenues in the short-term. It enhances the business’s profitability over time as well, helping you to almost double profits in as little as five years. The best retention plan does not act as a separate entity from your traditional marketing strategies or your daily interactions with customers. You do not put a retention plan into place for only a few months and then end it.
The most successful client retention plans get worked into the daily routines of your business managers and lower-level employees. Many industry experts did not become experts overnight or by resting on their laurels and natural intelligence. They worked hard to master their skills by putting actionable daily, weekly, and monthly routines into place. A good routine provides structure and allows you to form habits that make you and your employees more efficient in the long run.
A routine helps you accomplish more in one sitting with better results. They also assist in building momentum for your customer retention plan without adding extra stress. Less stress makes you and your employees feel relaxed at work. When this happens you heighten overall productivity and your employees more easily interact with customers, who can tell the difference between a happy work environment and a stressful one. Would you rather work with people who are relaxed and productive or stressed out and panicky? Your customers feel the same way.
Pathwwway’s Simple 5-Point Customer Retention Plan
- Optimize Your Customer Onboarding Process
The very first step to consider when initiating a customer retention plan is to optimize the onboarding process for new clients. The term onboarding refers to the method of acquiring new customers in the most uncomplicated manner possible. Great onboarding shows potential customers the value of your services and products immediately. They feel satisfied signing up for your service or buying your product without even trying them yet because you already demonstrated their worth to the customer.
You can choose to educate prospects through direct human interaction, where someone explains everything in person, or through self-service educational materials, like blogs, articles or videos, on your website or shared via social media and email. Make new clients feel welcome by personally calling them after they decide to sign-up. Thank them for partnering with your business and try to make them feel excited about the future. During the call, talk about what the client expects and align your moves to meet those expectations.
- Establish an Open Line of Communication
Marketing professionals understand how lucrative a strong customer retention plan can be for your business. The Pareto principle states that one-fifth of your customer base will account for four-fifths of your business’s revenue. Wouldn’t it be better to hold onto that one-fifth of customers and maximize their value?
Establishing an open line of communication works well for customers who contribute to your business at all levels. A customer relationship management (CRM) system can help organize this by letting you place customers into three groups that correspond to the size of their account. Then you can schedule regular follow-ups with them. You can use different contact methods and timings based on the individual client’s needs to make them feel comfortable contacting you first with any questions or concerns.
- Identify Customers Most at Risk of Leaving
Once you open that line of communication, do not forget to take advantage of it. Listen to a client’s concerns and record them in your CRM system so anyone who touches the account will know about the issue without the customer needing to explain multiple times. If you notice they continually experience problems with the same product or service, invite them to your business for extra education or training so they do not end up leaving out of frustration.
Take a look at customer feedback and review sites, or on your social media pages to learn about issues customers may not be sharing with you. Customers looking for discounts or to downgrade are another red flag. Simply reaching out to these clients is the best remedy in most instances.
- Check-In with Customers At Periodic Intervals
Pathwwway knows that after opening the line of communication and identifying what customers may fall into the churn, you still may find some initially enthusiastic customers do not return a second or third time. Once a customer purchases your goods or services at least three times, the chance of them returning a fourth time increases to 50%.
Even once clients feel a true connection to your company, they may not come back by themselves. Continually demonstrating your business’s value to customers by checking in periodically, or learning when they tend to buy more and contacting them then, greatly increases your chances of converting those potential sales into closed sales.
- Win Back Customers You’ve Lost
Do not just hold onto the customers who still buy from you, try to win back the customers you lost as well. You already lost their business, but they must have felt some benefit from it at the start. Tapping into why they originally chose your brand over the competition can help lead them back to your business. Figure out what made them leave in the first place and then come up with a compromise to win them back. If it’s pricing, try to work out a deal. If it was a lack of communication, put them into your follow-up routine. If it was poor customer service, go above and beyond to improve their experience or find an offer too good to refuse.
Follow these easy steps for setting up a customer retention plan and implement a routine today to maximize your interaction with every client.