It’s more like 90/10.
No, kidding. The mother lode of profits – 90%! – comes from the golden 10% of customers.
Moreover, the majority of the “10” are repeat buyers.
Yet surprisingly, more than 2 out of 3 companies have no effective strategy for keeping hard-earned customers.
It’s a shame, too, since it’s pretty simple to ensure buyers keep coming back. It takes just a few easy steps.
STATISTICS DON’T TELL EVERYTHING
Scads of marketing surveys cite the value of repeat customers. Such as, it’s 5 times harder to get a new customer than to keep a current one.
Descriptive statistics like that are nice, if a bit superficial.
Seeing what it takes to keep repeat customers is much more informative.
As an example, one supplement company that I worked with really hit the mark on customer retention. The main product line was probiotic supplements.
Every three months they sent a magalog to every buying customer.
The 15-page document included stories by other customers about how they had solved various issues with their gut health. It was 4-color, with lots of images of happy people.
It also had endorsements by a research scientist – i.e., me. Plus photos of me in a white lab coat and tie.
The document was sprinkled with plenty of persuasive language. It focused on key emotional hot buttons to spur buying action.
It read like a good novel that’s hard to put down. In other words, people read it all the way to the order page.
The order form made the buying process as simple as possible. And it offered options for better prices with multiple-bottle purchases.
The final piece of the magalog strategy was the ease of contact with the company. The target age group was primarily seniors. They were prone to phone calls to speak with an actual human being at the company.
Overall, what this marketing strategy did was create the feeling of a human-to-human connection with every customer.
It didn’t just make sure customers were satisfied. It focused on making customers happy.
As a result, over about a 10-year period the company’s valuation grew from around $6 million to more than $20 million.
While the marketing copy in this case was a magalog, the main point was to make customers so happy they’d keep coming back.
It sure worked for my own customers, too.
At one time I owned a brick-and-mortar retail nutrition store.
That’s where I created a weight loss program with an emphasis on customer appreciation.
The few simple steps I took to ensure their happiness with me did wonders for keeping customers coming back.
In fact, it’s still working online, more than a decade after closing the physical location.
THE CORE PRINCIPLE
The one thing that keeps customers coming back is this: A human connection.
All businesses rely on human customers. Connecting with them is the foundation of effective marketing.
It’s the bedrock for customers to get to know you, to like you, and to trust you.
People concerned with good health are especially responsive to the human connection. It plays to one of the most persuasive emotions in wellness marketing – hope.
In bygone days, brick-and-mortar nutrition stores relied on compassionate salespeople. They could provide wellness solutions in a caring manner, face-to-face.
The need for this seemingly old-time human connection hasn’t disappeared.
Customer loyalty still depends on fulfilling that need.
It’s just that, these days, digital marketing often fails to provide it.
Customers have little or no access to salespeople. Online contact forms go to impersonal email addresses such as “firstname.lastname@example.org.” Toll-free numbers only reach outsourced call centers in foreign countries. Marketing materials typically amount to fear-based browbeating.
In spite of all that, digital marketing can do a lot more than generate faceless leads. When done right, it can establish and maintain customer loyalty based on the human connection.
We can boil down the process into three key parts.
THREE SIMPLE STEPS
- First and foremost, create channels for person-to-person interactions.
Live conversations over the phone and personalized emails are unbeatable here.
Use these connections to ask customers what they want. Their answers to open-ended questions will give you a treasure trove of insights for future communications with them.
This gives you a solid foundation for acknowledging their concerns in a way that helps them feel significant.
Seeking significance is an overwhelming driver of human behavior.
Ultimately, listening to your customers will tell you exactly how they want you to market to them.
- Once you know what customers want, explain why you have their solutions.
The human connection you establish in Step 1 will build their trust in you.
They’ll listen more carefully and be more likely to buy from you, over and over.
- Create a customer appreciation program for following up after each and every purchase.
Many companies use Survey Monkey or other services for garnering customer feedback. That’s where the process usually stops.
You can really distinguish your company by actually following up to survey responders with thank you notes, acknowledgements of their value to you, and giveaways.
Adhere to the old adage that the big money is in the follow-up.
Taking these steps are certain to keep your customers happy.
And happy customers will continue to be the foundation of a healthy bottom line.
HOW CAN I HELP?
I’m an experienced freelance writer for the alternative health niche, a published research scientist, and a 30-year university professor.
I capitalize on my experience for writing persuasive marketing content that increases sales for alternative health businesses.
My work epitomizes the use of key emotional triggers that people identify with.
The content I create attracts new customers and makes sure they stay.
So go ahead and contact me today. Call, email, or fill out my contact form here: Contact.