A business is only as good as the clients it serves, and no business gets far after losing the clients it has. The key to success is building relationships that go beyond one-time projects and provide value to these clients on a consistent, ongoing basis.
Anyone who has ever been in business has an idea of how difficult it can be to win over a new customer. One can spend quite a bit of money and time marketing to consumers in the hopes of landing even one sale, depending on the industry. Even when a first-time customer completes a purchase, there’s no guarantee that person will be back to buy more.
The segment of the customer base who regularly buys from you could be the biggest asset your company has.
By adjusting your marketing spend so that you target not only new customers but also nurture your existing audience, you could enjoy far greater profitability. Here are seven ways that you can ensure your company has a sizable share of long-term customers.
According to the Entrepreneur, here are tips on how to build long-term relationships with customers:
Long-term customers generally do far more than buying a company’s products. They connect with the business itself, which incentivizes them to keep coming back. Through your website, email messaging, and social media posts, make sure you’re engaging the customers and increasing their personal connection.
Nothing can replace the experience of interacting with a company in person. When customers can meet you and your team, while also seeing your products live, they’ll feel a stronger connection than if they’d only purchased from your website and read your email messages.
Find opportunities to meet your customers in person, using experiential marketing techniques to announce, invite, and follow up afterward.
In order to better serve your customers, you need to know as much as possible about them. Analytics tools can help with that but for those who are visually oriented, heatmaps may be an even better solution.
When it comes to getting the word out about your brand, not all customers are created equal. Some will have a large online following, while others will have an inactive social media presence. Nurturing relationships with your more engaged customers can pay off if they mention you online.
Your goal is to introduce new customers to the products you provide. A consumer’s goal is to find products and services that add some type of value to their lives. As you develop a strategy to build customer loyalty, keep in mind what the average customer would hope to get out of such a relationship.
Through your content and brand experiences, you can make connections that will add value to your customers’ lives, which will, in turn, make them want to keep buying from you.
No customer wants to feel as though he or she is just a number. This is one benefit that small businesses have over much larger corporations. As your business grows, though, it can become far more difficult to know each person. In your database, including the date of the customer’s first purchase and a notes section where you and your staff can input small details that come up.
Even the most loyal customer can have problems. When someone calls for help, it’s important to offer the same friendly, attentive service no matter how many times they’ve bought from you. But if a long-term buyer has an issue, it’s important to flag the call for immediate attention to avoid losing someone who regularly makes purchases.
Make sure you’re monitoring for online mentions of your brand, as well, to capture customer complaints that are posted on social media or review sites. This type of criticism can not only cause you to lose the customer doing the complaining, but it could also scare off any new shoppers who are thinking of buying.
Businesses work hard to win repeat business from new customers. But it can be easy to lose customers without even realizing why they’re choosing not to return. Using the right tools, brands can learn more about the buyers they’re attracting in order to come up with better marketing strategies.