No doubt your customers are very important to your business. In fact, without customers, both new and existing, it is impossible for any business to survive.
What many businesses fail to realize is that once they have acquired their prospective clients how important it is to strengthen that relationship. This can be done by practicing simple follow-up techniques. Following-up is equally important to both new and existing customers and doing it right can help you boost your bottom line significantly.
Follow Up With Prospective Customers
As a small business owner, you will often find that it is not easy to close a sale on the very first attempt. However, this does not mean that the prospective client is not interested in buying your product or service. Maybe they require more time in order to make the purchasing decision or have some doubts and/or questions regarding your product or service. Contacting them after your initial meeting will show that you are genuinely interested in serving their interests and satisfying their needs, and not just getting their money.
During the follow-up process, you can take advantage of the opportunity and explain to your customers in depth how your product or service can prove to be beneficial to them. An effective follow-up strategy provides you with a second opportunity to make the sale.
Follow Up With Existing Customers
Acquiring a new customer is definitely more difficult than retaining existing ones. When it comes to your current customers, no effort should be spared in holding onto them. The hard truth is that if you don’t value your existing customers and do what’s necessary to keep them, your competitors will be only too happy to relieve you of the responsibility.
A follow-up call proves to your customers that their business is important to you. Make sure that they know that you want them to be satisfied with the service that they are receiving from your business. This way, you not only increase your chances of retaining them, but the probability that they will refer your services to others in the future also increases.
Follow Up Practices
If you have a small business, one easy follow-up procedure that can do wonders for your customer retention rate includes sending out greeting cards for birthdays, anniversaries and other special occasions. You could also mail your customers little notes of appreciation expressing your gratitude for showing loyalty towards your business. It is a good idea to send gift vouchers when a customer refers someone to you. Similarly, you could also offer them free trial period of a new product or service. This type of incentive is beneficial to your business and economical at the same time.
In lieu of sending cards, you may also consider contacting your customer annually to see if assistance is needed with any product or service they have previously purchased. Avoid sending emails as a part of your follow-up strategy (unless you have an internet business) as it only indicates indifference and there is no assurance that your email will be read.
As you can see, having a solid follow-up plan in place doesn’t have to be expensive, but it will require some time on you part. By making customer follow-up a priority, you will go a long way toward ensuring that your business enjoys lots of customer loyalty.