By: First Union | Date:
Top Tips for Keeping in Touch with Your Customers
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It’s much more cost-effective to retain current customers than it is to bring in new ones. Keeping in touch with your customers shows that you care. That can help bring them back to do business with you again.
However, there are appropriate ways to keep in touch with your customers. Coming on too aggressively can make it seem like you’re pushing your product or business down their throat. That can have the opposite result than what you’re hoping for.
Here are some top tips on how to keep in touch with your customers.
Comment on Blogs and Social Media
Most of your customers, especially if you are a B2B company, are easily found on blogs and social media. Take some time a couple of times a week to comment on their blog posts or social media.
Not only does this show your customer that you’re thinking about them, but they see a tangible benefit. Comments, likes, shares, and retweets all make something seem more relevant and authoritative.
Perhaps they will return the favor and comment on your blogs and social media. However, your interactions with your customers should be about helping them, not yourself. Never assume a kind word or deed will be reciprocated.
Send Personalized Cards
Sure, you can send out generic cards to all your customers for holidays and birthdays. However, it’s much more meaningful to send personalized cards. Even a note scrawled at the bottom of a generic card can help a customer feel more appreciated.
The more you can remember about your customers, the better. However, it can be hard to mentally keep track of information about all of your customers.
That’s why you should take notes as often as possible. Note if they have kids or a spouse or any other interesting information they mention.
Review these notes before writing your personalized cards or having a meeting with them. You should also review your notes periodically to help you remember these details if a customer stops by unexpectedly.
If you don’t send them too frequently, newsletters can be a great way to keep in touch with your customers. You should send newsletters at least once a month but no more often than once a week. At either end of the spectrum, they tend to turn into junk mail.
Newsletters should be about helping your customers, not promoting your business. What are some common problems your customers have that you can address? Do you have any upcoming sales or specials they should know about?
Again, newsletters should be about providing value for your customers, not trying to drive them into your store.
This is another way of providing something of value to your customers.
Refer local customers to other businesses (that aren’t in your niche/). Recommend your B2B customers to other people in your network. And ask for recommendations from your customers for products or services that don’t compete with yours.
Ask for Feedback
Asking your customers for feedback after a transaction has two purposes. It allows you to reach out to a customer after a purchase. It also allows you to find out where your business may be able to improve.
As long as you reply to every comment (including complaints/) respectfully, people will appreciate that you care about their input. In fact, reaching out to an unhappy customer could encourage them to return.
Additionally, positive reviews on places like Google and Yelp can help bring in new customers. That makes asking for feedback a no-brainer.
Connect on Social Media
When possible, connect with your customers on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or another social media platform. That will allow you to keep in touch, see how they are doing, and comment on their posts.
It’s crucial to have a strong social media presence these days. It’s becoming one of the most effective ways to market your business. However, you should include current customers and not just focus on bringing in new ones.
Offer Sneak Peeks
Are you about to roll out a new product or service? Reach out to previous customers to see if they would like to test the new offering in exchange for reviews. People love free stuff, and if they come in for something free, they’re likely to make a purchase as well.
This tactic can also help create strong brand loyalty. Once people learn they can get sneak peeks of new products, they’ll be even more in tune with your brand. In exchange, you get free publicity and reviews from customers who (hopefully/) already like your products.
Meet in Person
If you’re a B2B company, you should sit down with your customers in person whenever possible. People like having a face to go with a name. Also, taking the time to reach out and meet with them solidifies how much you value a relationship with them.
Think about Their Needs
Any time you reach out to a customer, your goal should be to think about what they need. Sure, you need their repeat business. However, promoting that idea too much will push people away.
If you can always provide something of value for your customers, they will be more likely to return. Value doesn’t need to have a dollar amount. An article in a newsletter that solves a problem they’ve been having has value to them.
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