The majority of business owners will tell you that their number one priority is ‘to get more customers’.

As a business owner, you’ll no doubt agree but you know that it can be hard work, it can be expensive and the result of some kind of marketing effort on your part which can be highly unpredictable.

Do you sometimes wonder if there is a simpler way?

Start by thinking who your customers are, not in terms of ‘targets’ rather in terms of them being your friends, because we all know that people buy from people they like.

When we need help or advice we turn to a friend and if that friend cant help, the odds are they will point you in the direction of someone they know who can.

It is worth remembering like friends, customers need to be looked after but there’s a difference.

If you lose contact with a friend, it’s a shared loss. Ever been contacted by a ‘long lost’ friend? Or contacted one yourself? It’s great isn’t it! A shared sense of renewal as well as a shared sense of a little guilt of ‘leaving it so long’?

But it’s different with your customers.

If you’re not talking to them, you can bet your life someone else is, your competitors, telling them all about their products or services and giving them reasons to become their customers. If you don’t talk to your customers, they’ll figure you don’t care enough about them and move their custom elsewhere and they won’t tell you about it or get in touch to ‘see how you are’ before going with their new friend, your competitor.

So, it is important you let them know about your new products or services? It really can be as simple as a quick phone call and an offer to stop by for a coffee. Of course, you’ll need some kind of database and reminder system too. There really are loads of ways to ‘talk’ to your customers and these should be a part of your regular business routines. Far cheaper than looking for new customers and a far bigger priority.

But what if you sell one-off products or services.”

Perhaps you install kitchens or build conservatories.

you might think “People don’t buy your stuff again – or not for a long time! It’s not worth the effort”.

But they have friends who might want your products or services? they will see your kitchen or conservatory and admire your craftsmanship, especially as your customer gushingly describes to them just how good you were! This is where testimonials and a simple question ‘are any of your friends looking to improve their kitchen?’ pays dividend.

That just leaves the ‘nearly’ customers. The ones that got away. They talked to you but ultimately didn’t buy from you.

Do you know why not?

It is important to maintain contact with them, maybe their decision not to purchase was a ‘not now’ decision – need to save up perhaps. When the time is right they’ll go to the business they feel they know best and your job is to make sure it’s your business.

If not, your competitor wins, and you lose.

Keeping customers is more than just luck it entails a lot of commitment as well as good planning and trust. Try your best to win your customers’ trust, take care of it and for sure, this trust will fuel good business for you for many years to come.

Need some help in improving your customer retention (including getting more of the ‘nearly customers’ to actually buy? Well, we can help. Complete our free business ‘MOT’ check and see how easy it is to achieve great results for your business.

It could be the best thing you do for your business and yourself today!



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