Keeping Customers and Growing Repeat Sales

In the business realm, maintaining customer retention and consistently driving sales can be a persistent challenge. The key to triumph lies in the mutual perception between you and your customers.

By investing time, attention, and resources into nurturing customer relationships, the outcome leads to loyalty and favourable business advocacy.

The first step involves viewing sales holistically, and understanding that various components are interconnected to form a complete system. While the saying “the customer is always right” is familiar in business, it does not encapsulate sales as an all-encompassing culture, which includes your team, company, stakeholders, and, of course, customers.

In my recent blog post, I highlighted the significance of adopting an above-point mindset to boost productivity. Interestingly, this approach can also be beneficial in sales and customer service. By maintaining a forward-looking perspective and prioritizing customer satisfaction, you can steer clear of the exhausting cycle of explanations and justifications. This not only preserves your energy but also shapes customers’ perceptions of your business positively. 

Keeping things above the point also means you’re emphasizing consistency significantly. Customers who can depend on your consistency are not only more satisfied but also more inclined to stay loyal to your business. To maintain consistency, it is crucial that your team shares uniform guidelines for conflict resolution undergo consistent training, and possess all essential information about your business. 

Consistency is also key when it comes to your customers knowing what they can expect. So if you’re providing a service, take the time to let them know how long it’ll take, what you’ll be doing, and any other information that encourages confidence between you and the customer. 

Looking beyond the present moment can help you stay above the point and prepare for unforeseen circumstances. Unexpected events have the potential to create a negative impact, affecting your public relations and business reputation. By anticipating and planning ahead, you can effectively address unexpected situations, leading to increased customer satisfaction. Keep in mind that these critical “moments of truth” can occur frequently throughout the year. By strategizing and predicting these events, you can proactively manage them.

To maintain customer loyalty and drive repeat sales, it is crucial to understand your customers’ perspective and approach this comprehensively.

One effective strategy is to apply the ABCD method to identify your target clientele.

The A (awesome) and B (basic) customers are those who consistently support your business and align well with your company culture.

On the other hand, the C (can’t deal with) and D (dead, representing negative impact on energy, finances, or company values) customers often pose challenges.

Despite the saying “the squeaky wheel gets the grease,” it is more beneficial to focus on the A and B customers who yield the best outcomes. Prioritize customers that require 20% effort but bring 80% results. Begin by categorizing your customers and then regularly assessing your service to enhance the experience for your top-tier customers.

The progress a customer makes when interacting with or investing in your business is reflected in a loyalty ladder. At the bottom, a customer starts as a Suspect, merely exploring your business without a commitment. Upon showing interest and providing contact information, they evolve into a Prospect.

Transitioning to a Shopper, they engage with your business, preparing for a purchase. When a transaction occurs, they become a Customer.

But this is about taking it to the next level!

Customers become Members when they feel like they’re part of your community.

At this point, if it’s possible for your business, it’s worth brainstorming some critical nonessentials, or things that boost your relationship with a customer. It’s not critical to your product or even in making a sale, but it’s something that makes your customers feel like they’re important to your business. Those little details move them from Members to Advocates, which means if asked they will promote your business to others.

The top of the loyalty ladder and the ultimate goal is to cultivate Raving Fans, who enthusiastically promote your business without prompting.

Regularly evaluating customer interactions and setting objectives aligned with the loyalty ladder can help you aim for milestones.

Customer retention greatly depends on how they perceive your services and any obstacles they encounter.

When evaluating your services, seeking feedback from current customers is highly beneficial. Assess if accessing your services is effortless and how customers feel after using them.

Remember, active listening involves being fully present with the customer, rather than just planning your response or solutions. Perceived indifference poses a significant threat to customer retention, as a staggering 68% of customers may discontinue business due to it.

For instance, failing to return a promised call can breed perceived indifference. In your customer service evaluations, ensure you dedicate effort, resources, and creativity to prevent perceived indifference from creeping into your business. Are you dedicating enough attention to nurturing your A and B-level customers who are essential for supporting your business?

When engaging with customers, consider using the mirror-and-match approach or the formula for change. The formula for change is (D x V) + F > R. I will delve deeper into this concept in an upcoming posts.

In simple terms, you multiply the Dissatisfaction (of your client in any scenario) by your Vision, then add the First steps. This total should be greater than the customer’s resistance.

As mentioned above, make sure that you’re removing barriers, making it easy to access your product, and combatting perceived indifference.

But when we talk about customer service holistically, we’re thinking about how the customer wants to be treated AND how you would want to be treated.

When interacting with customers, pay attention to their body language 🙅‍♀️, eye contact 👀, speech👂, and annotations🫦.

Do your best to read the situation, considering how they want to be treated and how you think you would want to be treated.

When you mirror and then match your customer’s behaviour, you’re eliminating resistance and encouraging positive interactions that are beneficial to both retention and repeat sales. 

Keep in mind that customer retention and sales growth are dynamic concepts. Continuously assess your metrics 📈 and procedures to guarantee you are meeting your objectives 🎯. Engage your entire team to ensure everyone is well-informed and embodies your company culture. The aim is to exhibit a holistic customer service approach that mirrors your business model and fosters positive interactions with existing and potential clients.

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