Christmas is almost hear and many small businesses are focusing their budgets on generating traffic to drive sales. Whilst attracting new customers is still important you should not forget those past customers who have already given you their hard-earned money and who know your brand. It is much easier to get an existing customer to buy more with some good old-fashioned lovin!
The way to stay in the hearts and minds of your customers is to go that bit further and to deliver that little bit extra. Rather than be constantly focused on sales from your next mass email blast, try to segment your customers into groups and find out what makes them tick. Communication with them doesn’t have to be about generating a sale. It should also be about getting to know them and building that closer relationship.
I recently had a great experience when I bought some coffee beans from a little company call Coffee Bean Shop.co.uk. Once I had placed my first order, I received a phone call from Elizabeth, the owner of the business. I thought she was calling me because my delivery address was wrong or because my card details were incorrect. In fact, she was just calling me to welcome me as a customer as to tell me a bit about her business. I was quite shocked because that had never happened to me before. This brief 2 minute phone call made me feel valued, important and I felt like I had a closer bond with Elizabeth and her company.
This breath of fresh air is the approach every small business should take. You need to make sure you make time to speak with your customers and to get to know them. Don’t hide behind your website or email, make sure you have human interaction either through phone, letter or social media. You should treat your top 10% of customers like royalty and nurture your others so they join them. You can achieve more repeat business from 10 loyal customers than you can 100 non-loyal ones.
Rather than think about how you can make your product or service better compared with the competition, think about how you can make it better for your customers. Think customer experience and how you can make buying from you enjoyable. In short, show them some love! Once customers have that emotional bond with your brand then they will come back for more.
For the record, CoffeeBeanShop.co.uk will be fuelling my coffee addiction from now on. 🙂