What's the secret to keep your customers coming back, or even convert them into business partners?
It comes down to customer service. Today’s post will give you 4 tactics to take great care of your customers and make them feel like VIPs!
Show You Care About Them As People, Not Just Customers
Too often in direct sales, business owners hustle hard to make a sale, but then turn their attention away from a buyer and onto the next prospect. If you want to succeed, you’ve got to keep growing -- but it’s also important to maintain the customers you’ve already got.
One great way to keep customers is to make sure you’re interacting with your customers as whole people. Whether you only reach out with a new promotion or a reminder to reorder, or you send a friendly birthday note or leave occasional comments on their social posts - trust us, your customers will notice.
Make sure they notice you interacting with them on topics unrelated to your business. The more you engage by loving the photos of their new dog or dropping a sweet note in the mail “just because”, the more you’ll show them that you care. Then, when you have an occasional conversation about business, you’ll have a solid foundation to stand on.
Listen & Ask
Listen to your customers, just like you would to your prospects. Listen when they tell you about their love for something you sold them or their frustration with a product that’s not working for them. Listen to their exhaustion from a busy work schedule, or their stress about paying the bill for their unexpected car repair. Listen -- and then get ready to ask.
Ask them how much they are loving the products they’ve ordered from you. (Keep it positive and they’ll respond positively!) Ask them what they need before they realize they’re almost out. Ask them if they might want to save even more on their order (and maybe help pay that repair bill?) by joining as a partner.
So many of us listen only to get through the conversation until it’s our turn to talk. Work on listening for the sake of listening. Take notes, if you need to.
When the time is right -- whether it’s that same day or a month later -- ask them the questions that show you’ve paid attention.
Cultivate a Concierge Mentality
When’s the last time that a customer service interaction made an impression on you?
Maybe it was the time your AirBnB hosts left behind a personalized note and a bottle of champagne because they knew you were celebrating your anniversary. Or, when your favorite barista had your drink order waiting for you the day she saw on Instagram that your dog died.
Anticipating needs or giving small gifts is an incredibly simple way to make people feel appreciated. It doesn’t need to break the bank, either. For the price of a stamp, you can mail handwritten thank-you or birthday notes to your clients. For a few dollars, you could send a “just because” coffee card to tell them “thanks a latte” for their business.
You can find free ways to do this, too. Keep notes in your Traktivity contact list and you’ll remember the small details that help set your service apart.
Make a note that Becky likes to order a new lipstick each year for her mom’s birthday, and send her a screenshot of this year’s new shades a few weeks before the date.
Write down Lindsay’s family’s annual trip to the beach in June, and reach out to her a month or two beforehand with the offer of a free beach tote with her purchase that month.
This is really a continuation of treating your customer like a person -- and then taking the best possible care of them. Once you know who your customers really are, you’ll know what will make them feel appreciated.
Reward Their Referrals
Your happy customers are one of your best sources for new customer referrals. You don’t want to overwhelm them with this, but at least one or two times a year, reach out to your customers and ask them who else in their life might love their favorite product. By asking this way, instead of asking for a generic referral, you’re helping your customer first focus on something they love, then prepare for a successful turnover by planting the seed of sharing that favorite with someone they love.
Once you get a referral -- whether or not it’s successful -- reward your client. Maybe you’ll have a range of rewards -- a free sample or a trial size product for a referral of someone new to your business, even if they don't buy; a bigger prize or a gift card for a converting sale.
Finally -- keep the window open for an opportunity to turn a customer into a partner with a killer referral. If your customer is telling you how much a friend would love to try your product -- why not ask if they’d like to make that their first sale?
How do YOU treat your customers like VIPS? What are your favorite free, low-cost, or all-out ways of recognizing and appreciating a special customer? Share your tactics with us on Instagram or Facebook for a chance to be featured!