Well, this isn’t something I haven’t talked about in length, but in the case of customer retention strategies, I see the need to address this periodically, even if it just means I repeat myself. I know I tend to bemoan how many times I have to talk about the same thing to keep it visible in the din of the internet, but in this case? It’s constructive!
What are Customer Retention Strategies:
Well, we know that in any industry, regardless if it’s pure B2C or B2B or anything in between, service or consumable, there are a few basic equations and phenomena with which we deal. We must market in order to acquire customers and retain presence (just like web journalism). We measure this with metrics like customer acquisition costs (CAC). From there, we have all manner of other derivative metrics like average lifetime values of customers, gross values and the like. It gets pretty complex I suppose.
But, we have another one that only serves to make sense alongside that, and that’s customer retention. It’s known by other terms depending on the field, as well. One of the more well known alternate names of this would be customer loyalty.
This is where your meat and potatoes should be, for primary revenue and profit. You want return customers, which have less energy put in for the output they provide, versus marketed and hooked customers, with that huge CAC drain in between.
There are a number of things you can do to help with retention, and the idea is that they are far less costly in ratio to returning customers, compared to CAC ratios. Let’s look at a few really quickly.
#1 – Brilliant Customer Service and Support
This is the absolute best thing, aside from having a wonderful product or service, you can do to ensure loyalty or retention. Good customer support leaves the customer thinking “Well, crap happens. But they resolved it, and I like their product/service a lot.” Well, they’ll come back. If this goes awry … oh boy.
#2 – Benefits
This one is old, but it works. Loyalty rewards like discounts, prizes or other gifts of appreciation for consistent business. It just takes common sense to make sure the benefits are cost effective.
#3 – Presence Maintenance
Well, you still need some marketing, but it’s the more common presence establishing form of marketing. It’s less costly and risky than need creation marketing. Do it. Enough said here.
#4 – Web Presence
This entails several things. I don’t mean email marketing. I mean presence through content marketing (where need creation and presence maintenance have a blurred line anyhow), social media interaction and engagement, and even video and gamification engagement over available frameworks.
This can get expensive if you go all out, but when done right, it pays for itself immediately, and starts bringing in new energy.
#5 – Affiliate Models
This is more than affiliate marketing. In many cases, being loyal to one product or service or provider can be beneficial with an affiliate provider who’s chums with the other one. You see this online a lot, with logging into completely independent systems with a Twitter, Google or Facebook accounts.
Now, these are just some basic customer retention strategies, and a lot of big shot companies come up with unique ways to handle this. But, I wanted to talk about the peoples’ methods and so I did.