Did you know that it costs a lot less to secure repeat business than it does to acquire new customers? In fact, it’s somewhere between 5 and 25 times less expensive to keep an existing customer than to replace them, according to HBR. Want some other great stats about why you should make your customers feel special? Here you go:
- A 5% increase in retention can increase your profitability by a whopping 75% [source]
- Most SMBs (small and mid-sized enterprises) report that 50% of their revenue comes from repeat business
- A repeat customer is often worth 10 times the value of their first visit [source]
- A 5% decrease in defections can result in increased profits of 25-125% [source]
Obviously, keeping your customers happy and making customers feel special, pays massive dividends to your organization. Despite this, we all face situations where we don’t feel special or even feel like a business doesn’t care about us at all. This attitude is dangerous as 89% of switching behavior is a direct result of a poor experience with a competitor [source]. Research also shows that it takes up to 12 positive experiences to make up for a single negative experience and you might not get the chance to make things right.
So, the question you should ask yourself and your employees is “how do I make my customers feel special?” And, we’re here to answer that question.
Make customers feel special
First, let’s note that not all customers want the same things and the way their view satisfaction is different. Let’s take a look at this.
As you can see, different groups start at different places. Customers who start by thinking your brand is awesome take a longer period of time to decide to bail on your brand, giving you lots of chances to improve performance before they defect. Groups that have a negative experience begin defecting very quickly and reach a retention rate of nearly 0 within 6 months.
Note that some aspects behind this attrition rate are beyond your control. For instance, negative emotions bleed into your feelings about a brand regardless of performance. During the pandemic, a certain depression invaded many folks who lost jobs or were sent to work from home, so it was harder to feel positive about a brand regardless of its performance. The opposite is also true. So, in working to make customers feel special, focus on those aspects you control with these tactics.
Ensure satisfaction; strive for delight
Satisfaction, when it comes to customer evaluations of your brand, reflects an attitude that your brand met the customer’s expectations. Your promises often form expectations, so ensure you can deliver on your promises 100% of the time. You may trick someone into making a purchase with grandiose promises but, if the product doesn’t live up to your promises, customers come away unhappy. Unhappy customers not only won’t buy from you again, they’ll share their dissatisfaction to reduce your ability to sell to others.
Delight, on the other hand, comes from exceeding expectations. Delighted customers are more likely to share your brand with others, promote your brand on social media, and make repeat purchases, as you can see in the graphic above.
Put loyal customers first in the campaigns that you create
There are a lot of industries that show favoritism towards (and create special offers for) new customers, getting great welcome deals and so on. Once you make your first purchase or become a member, however, they forget about you. For example, many mobile companies offer great deals and free phones when a customer switches from a competitor. This is incredibly frustrating for loyal consumers, as they don’t feel like the company appreciates them; resulting in product switching behavior. That’s why it makes sense to create campaigns for loyal customers or ones that include loyal customers, ensuring they get rewarded for their efforts. AT&T recognizes this and created a campaign where existing customers get the same deal as new ones.
Setting up a database that clearly shows customers, their purchase behavior, and the timing of purchases really helps when crafting campaigns for your existing customers.
Re-consider your social media efforts
You should also make sure you keep track of your social media feeds so that you can see who is championing your brand; something called listening. You should reward folks who give you a positive mention or, even better for your brand, answer questions to help new customers. Mentioning customers in social media makes your customers feel special and encourages a dialog with them. A great social strategy involves highlighting customers as it not only makes your customers feel special, it attracts attention from others in their social graph and shows you care about your customers. You can encourage engagement with your social platforms by offering discounts to users who share your posts or holding contests where users get rewarded for showing your brand in their social posts.
Companies offering SEO services also care about what happens on your social platforms as engagement from social platforms is a ranking factor for your website.
Craft unique campaigns for your high-value customers
In addition to the suggestions we mentioned so far, another idea to consider is to create campaigns that are specifically aimed at your high-value customers, and be sure that they are specific to these members. Today, software and analytics inform us much of what we need to know about our consumers. This means you can get hands-on with ease, and you can cut down the amount of time required to identify high-value customers and build campaigns based on their specific needs and hot buttons. You can then use this for developing campaigns that are personalized and specific for certain members or certain groups of customers. This is an excellent way of making your consumers feel special.
Find out what your customers really want
Last but not least, one of the most effective ways to craft campaigns that actually work for your customers is to simply ask them what they really want! Some customers want the opportunity to enter into contests for high-value products, while other customers may want to receive regular discounts. Many customers want to know you acknowledge their existence and value to your brand. For instance, including hand-written notes as part of your shipping process makes a huge difference in making customers feel special even when the notes are actually computer-generated using a handwriting font. Or, creating customer delight by including a small, low-value bonus in the package might work for other customers. Try all these options and track performance to segment your customer base and send them the campaigns most likely to generate a positive return for that customer.
By understanding your customers and what matters most to them, you’re in the best possible position to deliver something spectacular that rewards your loyal customers.
As you can see, there are a number of different approaches you can use when it comes to creating high-value marketing campaigns that will value and reward your most loyal customers. We hope that the advice and suggestions that we provided above help you give your loyal customers the recognition they deserve.
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