According to Invesp, a leading marketing research firm, only 18% of businesses spend time, money and energy on retention versus acquisition marketing. Yet, increasing retention numbers by as little as 5% can increase profits exponentially! The report continues to share that it costs 5 times more to acquire a new client than to keep an existing client happy and buying more. So how can your company create a focus on retaining clients? Here are 5 programs that we have run at Plumb Marketing with astounding success that have helped propel us to new growth within our existing client base.
- Regular newsletter communications. And we are not talking email, although this technique has its place. We mean a well-crafted, printed, consistent, mailed newsletter to your existing clients. Unlike an email communication that often deleted on average 75% of the time before it is ever read, a newsletter mailer is tangible, may sit on the kitchen counter for a few days and keeps your branding in front of your already happy client. Make sure it is chock full of amazing content, client spotlights, employee updates and valuable offers and your clients will begin to look for your mailer each month.
- Welcome kits and occasional gifting. We have all received the occasional calendar, a card and even a gift from some of our top vendors during the holiday season. But do you send out these items for new clients and existing clients throughout the year? One study by Brandwatch shows that a company that receives a promotional gift from a vendor partner as a thank you for doing business are 79% more likely to do business with vendor again.
- Value-focused customer experiences. Did you know a current client is 60-70% more likely to purchase something new from you then a new prospect? Yet so few businesses arm their entire staff with the ability to identify and pitch new ideas to clients. While we know not everyone in an organization is skilled at “selling”, a customer comes to respect a high level of customer service that includes suggestions on how to grow. Be sure to arm your customer service and account management representatives with tools to identify new upsell opportunities. Your client will thank you.
- Quarterly business reviews. This is a new practice that we are instituting at Plumb Marketing in 2019. We have been doing reviews with our clients for years, just not on a formal and consistent basis. Then we realized that when we visit our clients regularly, even just via a phone call, to check in and see how their experience is going with us, we find lots of opportunities to help even more with lead generation, marketing strategy and creative ideas we observe every day through the course of our business. If you are not visiting your clients consistently, now is the time.
- Invest in a CRM so you do not lose details. The number one reason a customer leaves you is that they believe they are no longer cared for. By implementing a customer relationship manager (CRM), your team can stay on top of critical details about client communications, important dates and drops/increases in sales activities. You might be surprised how much remembering a birthday, anniversary, names of children, past order details and last communications with your company can go towards building loyalty and improving the client experience. We all want to be heard, seen and cared for. When you have 500 clients, the details can no longer live in your head.
Do you need other client retention ideas? We have spent a lot of time exploring this area for ourselves and our clients over the past 22 years. Contact us. We would be happy to share what we have learned.