Finding new customers can be a time consuming and costly exercise – and while some customer attrition is only to be expected – it can be much more cost effective to hold onto your existing customers than to find new leads.
So, how can you encourage loyalty in your current customers?
5 Strategies to Help Increase Customer Loyalty
- Set Reasonable Expectations – Setting clear customer expectations is crucial to customer retention. A great rule of thumb for setting expectations is to always under promise and over deliver. This way you leave yourself some room to move if things don’t quite go according to plan. Of course – when things do go according to plan – you’ll give your customer a pleasant surprise.
- Become a Trusted Advisor – Make sure you’re as accessible as possible to your customer-base and be prepared to answer questions and give advice. If you can become the ‘go-to-guy’ for your industry then you’ll be fostering the type of relationship that won’t be easily replaced by the competition. Take a look at some industry issues that your customers face and find ways to discuss their issues or solve their problems.
- Be a Real Person – As trust increases, people become more committed. Bring a human element into your business dealings and connect with your customers beyond your sales pitch. Try interacting with them socially on Facebook or Twitter. Ask questions and really listen to their responses, start a blog and share your experience with them. Putting a face to your business will help customers form an attachment to you.
- Ask For Feedback – Sometimes keeping customers happy is as simple as listening to what they have to say. The best way to do that is to give them an avenue to share their views. Customer feedback will help you recognise any weaknesses and give you the opportunity to address issues before they become a problem.