A solid customer base is the foundation of any successful business. Retaining loyal customers and clients keeps money flowing into your business. It even helps during slow periods when new customers may be difficult to find. Besides being a major source of income, loyal or repeat customers are also a major source of new clients. This is because such customers can refer friends and family to your business. They can even write positive reviews, and act as brand ambassadors simply by using or talking about your product or service.
Also, your existing customers have already been converted — you don’t need to do the work again. They’ve already experienced your brand, so they know what to expect. Though it’s still smart to continue directing some of your marketing efforts and budget towards your current customers. Moreover, you can also feel confident focusing heavier efforts on converting new customers. This is especially when you’ve seen which types of ads already converted your current customers successfully. Therefore, it all starts with establishing your core customer base first so you can enjoy more freedom down the line.
So to help you improve your customer base, here are few customer retention strategies that go a long way in improving your businesses’ bottom line.
1. Boost Social Media Engagement
Your social media pages are a direct link to your customers. These days, communicating through social media is one of the biggest customer service trends. It’s common for customers to reach out through platforms such as Twitter or Facebook before calling or emailing your company for assistance. Naturally, offering better service through social media is a great way to retain your relationships with your customers.
Creating engaging articles, blog posts, images, and videos is a great way to establish your brand as an authority in your field. This naturally helps you with customer retention. Provide genuine value to your followers, and they’re going to come back again and again. Additionally, if you put out high-quality content, you can advertise your brand virtually free of charge. Your audience may end up sharing your content for you. You can also pay for sponsored ads that target specific demographics.
2. Hold Promotional Events
A great way to keep your customers excited about your company is to hold promotional events. That can mean a lot of things. If you run a local store, you could host an event with live music, entertainment, and freebies. If your company is more focused on online sales, you could offer discount codes or contests. You can also incorporate your social media efforts with this approach. This can be achieved by requiring followers to share a post or tag a friend in order to enter the contest. Just be sure to offer a prize that’s enticing enough to get your customers excited.
3. Offer a Loyalty Program
Everyone loves a freebie, and rewarding your loyal customers is one of the best ways to keep them returning. A classic version of a customer loyalty program is the punch card. Say you run a smoothie shop. Every time a customer buys a smoothie, you punch their card. After seven smoothies, the eighth is free. These days, you can use that same strategy digitally. Just ask your customers to sign up for personal accounts on your web store that track their orders. You can also take a slightly different approach by offering discounts when customers reach a certain threshold of spending. This approach is ideal when you sell high-value items that wouldn’t work for the punch card method.
Of course, offering these types of events and loyalty programs can require an initial investment. But studies have shown that higher retention rates lead to a higher bottom line in the long run. You may want to set income goals and then implement these loyalty-boosting programs after you’ve reached them. That way you’re still reaching your targets and simply reinvesting additional profits into customer retention. QuickBooks Online offers powerful financial reporting tools that make tracking your income a breeze. Dedicate a portion of your marketing budget to retaining customers and clients, and you should see results over time.