In an overly-ambitious market, businesses are losing customers all the time. Ensuring customer retention in this market is like striking hidden treasure. According to a study by Accenture, 66% of US customers tend to spend more on the brands they have been loyal to. Out of which, 12% publicly defend the brand on their social media while the remaining will actively recommend it to their friends and family. That is precisely how impactful customer retention can prove to be.
There is a million-dollar effort implemented across industries in lead generation and customer acquisition. To help businesses justify this process, they need to retain their customers. Every time a company loses a customer, they waste approximately seven times the resources that were used in the first place, to convert them.
Now that the importance of customer retention has been established, how do we deliver on it? It is no myth that retention does depend a lot upon the quality of the product or the service that is sold. However, there is always an option of following-up to do a customary health-check of the services. Subsequently, several ploys can be exercised to guarantee the stay of the customer.
Here are some of the strategies for customer retention, which can prove to be fruitful in the long run.
In this hyperactive market, customers often feel exploited. According to a study, 68% of times, customers leave a brand because they perceived the brand to be ignorant. To avoid this mishap, brands need to empathize with their customers. To do so, the customer retention team has to segment the customers based on their behaviour towards the industry. This segmentation can be based on the following:
a) Purchasing Behaviour
b) Level of Engagement
c) Satisfaction Level
d) Lifecycle Stage
e) Stage of Loyalty
Customer retention teams can use these combinations to segment their customers. Based on these data, organizations can leverage behavioural differences for individualized attention. For example, instead of sending mass emails with a similar message, teams can now send personalized messages to each social group. Alternatively, thanks to behavioural segmentation, one can predict which customers are likely to leave. Accordingly, reps can take initiatives to retain these customers by collecting accurate feedback and providing relevant solutions. This improves your brand image, engages your customers, and keeps them gratified.
Rewarding customers is one of the most successful strategies for customer retention. Securing your customers’ loyalty promises a relationship continuity, which can provide a steady flow of revenue. This loyalty is developed over the accumulation of positive past experiences of the customer with the brand.
Businesses have developed different types of loyalty programs to reward their dependable customers. These programs ensure a repeat buying behaviour within their customers. The rewarding programs are strategized accordingly to ensure a symbiotic relationship. Some of the popular loyalty programs are:
a) Redeemable points system.
b) Subscription system for VIP benefits.
c) All-Inclusive offers in association with other companies.
d) Cashbacks after reaching a limit.
e) Discounted prices on birthdays.
Loyalty programs have a direct impact on the process of customer retention. They not only retain existing customers but pave a pathway for new acquisitions along with upselling opportunities, reduced marketing costs, renewed brand advocacy, and more.
3. Utilize Well-Integrated CRMs:
Nothing knows your customer better than your CRM. All the above-mentioned points can be delivered upon with an efficient CRM. A CRM will record the journey of thousands of customers that a company serves. It comes with tools that will equip your reps with proactive insights to reduce the churn rate.
The Customer Relationship Management system enables you to track the entire customer interaction that has occurred over several touchpoints. It can be used to schedule meetings, collect essential feedback, initiate follow-ups, assign appointments to team members, and more. All information related to your customers are automatically stored with their consent and is utilized to provide more curated service. C-Zentrix provides Omnichannel platform integrated with CRM to enhance the customer retention process, which results in lesser churning.
CRMs are well-organized by default. Hence, it has the potential to re-arrange customer success and customer retention teams to yield the best results.
Customers tend to trust a brand that is transparent. Ideally, customers prefer to be well-informed buyers. But complicated services like healthcare, insurance, credit cards, B2B services, come with heaves of information. Consuming all this information can be tiring and might end up repelling the customer. On the other hand, contacting the support team means several levels of verification, problem identification, and other unavoidable processes before a resolution is met.
To avoid such instances, employing self-servicing tools like a knowledge base is a smart choice. Businesses can categorize information based on recurring shortcomings and other frequently asked questions. Customers can avail all the information in their sweet time without haste, allowing them to make an informed decision.
Informed customers derive the full value of your product, enabling them to meet their goals. When customers achieve their individual goals using your product/service, they intend to buy/renew again. This promises customer satisfaction, enables loyalty, and invites positive feedback.
Informative knowledge bases empower the customers to understand their rights better, and exercise their commitment towards the company without any hesitance. Such clarity relieves the business of any legal liabilities in the long-run.
Customers are often left unattended after the first sale interaction. This is not a healthy practice. Customers might feel discarded and may leave for better service irrespective of product quality. Hence, it is vital to keep the customers in the loop, to make them feel they are a part of the brand’s legacy.
Now, engagement can be of two types:
a) Engagement to educate: Companies go through several changes over the period: products get updated, terminologies get changes, new company acquisitions, renewed company policies, and more. The customer must be informed about all of these. If there is a product update that the particular customer uses, then it is of the highest importance to inform them without delay. This can be done over different touchpoints, based on the interaction history with the customer.
b) Engagement for delight: Customers should always be informed about discount periods, giveaway competitions, clearance sales, and other relevant newsletters. Businesses are now utilizing social media to explain their values with interactive videos, success stories, informative posts and more. To notch it up a bit, they can use AI-driven Chatbots to send promotional information via Messenger or Whatsapp as well.
These tactics encourage your audience to engage with you, which in-return strengthens the relationship between the brand and the consumer.
Customer retention is not an unachievable target; however, there is no business that is too perfect to lose customers. The plan is to reduce the churn rate as much as possible. According to a Harvard Business Review, increasing retention rates by 5% can increase profits by 25% to 95%. Overall, 70% of the respondents agreed that it is cheaper to retain a customer than to acquire.
Keeping these numbers in mind, adopting proactive strategies for customer retention is the only way to survive in this market. By accurate assembling of data, identification of the retention audience, active engagement, educating the customer, encouraging customer feedback, a business can successfully initiate the process of customer retention. These efforts can potentially convert every customer into profitable hubs, ensuring an indisputable source of revenue.
Author Bio: Sweta is a passionate technical writer with an experience in digital marketing. Outside work, she is a devoted Esports advocate.