Gary W. Patterson, president & CEO of FiscalDoctor®, works internationally with leaders who want to spotlight million dollar blind spots with 20/20 vision so that they can make the best business decisions possible. Take advantage of his free fiscal quiz at www.fiscaldoctor.com and all the resources he’s made available at his book website, www.MillionDollarBlindspots.com.
Raising average revenue per customer depends on making products and services that people want to keep on buying. As a marketing leader, that is obvious to you. There are lots of ways to retain customers, but many of them are difficult and expensive. What if your Board has asked you to save money, and contribute to a larger bottom line?
Here are the FiscalDoctor’s favorite 7 low-cost “secret tips”:
Tip 1: Know what your customers want
This step is often overlooked or approached improperly. Find out what your customers really want. Don’t just trust that they’ll tell you the full story in a feedback form (they often ignore those or throw them in the trash). Invest in an outside interviewer to help you discover their true sentiments and desires.
Tip 2: Deal with customer complaints promptly and decisively
No one likes disappointing a customer, but valid complaints actually aid your business as they tell you what you are doing wrong—especially when they are unsolicited. Complaints are much more valuable than compliments; they tell you specifically how you can improve.
Tip 3: Help customers get the most from your product
Concise, clear instructions on how to best use your product or service will help customers get the most out of your product and improve the likelihood they will return. Select multiple channels (web, phone, onsite, video tutorials, instant messaging) to give them options.
Tip 4: Inform your customers
When your customers are steeped in great information about your products, services and story, they’ll be more likely to come back for more. How strong is your content management strategy? Two companies worth emulating are HubSpot and ExactTarget.
Tip 5: Surprise your customers
Surprise your customers with unexpected benefits for a killer retention strategy. After all, you learned to under promise and over-perform for a reason. It works.
Tip 6: Develop a customer service culture
Customer service is a core competency for any successful customer retention strategy.
Tip 7: Manage your supply chain with a customer focus
Customers want to be able to get their hands on your products and services when they need them, or at the very least, when you’ve promised them. You won’t keep customers if you can’t deliver on time. It’s best to get it right the first time.
There’s extra money on the table, and it’s within marketing’s grasp. How many of these 7 tips for defining products, creating leads and retaining customers are you putting to work?