Business Strategies to Make the Most of Your Database of Clients
Been There, Done That?
When we talk to clients about following up with their past clients, we sometimes hear, “They’ve just/already bought my product/service,” or “I did a great job for them; they’ll come back to me.” These two perceptions can have a devastating impact on your business. Client Follow-up is almost non existent.
First, consider that because your past clients already know you, like you, and trust you, they don’t have to be convinced of your benefit. They simply need to be reminded that you’re still around. With the alarming high rate at which businesses turn over, no one counts on you always being there.
Second, who better to recommend you to others? It’s not always about getting someone to use you/buy your stuff again themselves. Think instead about how many people they know. Your pool of potential customers expands greatly when your past clients sing your praises.
Client Follow-up: How Often to Contact, and How?
At a minimum, make sure something is in front of your clients at least monthly. Whether you’re mailing a postcard, distributing an e-newsletter, or composing a letter, consistency is key in holding a place in someone’s memory. Lay out your schedule for an entire year and identify what each month’s delivery piece will be.
In service-driven businesses, if you can incorporate a quarterly voice-to-voice or face-to-face communication in addition to your monthly “get seen” pieces, even better. Past clients need to be reminded not only that you’re still in the business, but also that you sincerely care about them. So, if the size of your database is manageable, you could put each person on a 90-day recurring follow-up call. Individual texts, meet-ups for coffee, and client appreciation gatherings are additional ways to get in front of your past clients.
What to Say and How to Say It
One of the biggest misconceptions about client follow-up is that any and every communication with a past client has to include an “ask” for business. We find the opposite is true. If you’re always calling or mailing just to ask for business, pretty soon your calls go unanswered and your mailings head straight to the recycle bin.
Instead, seek to add value and be of service. When you mail, think about what would be perceived as valuable by your clients. Do they appreciate knowing recent market activity in their area? Can you provide wellness or safety tips relevant to your business and their lives? When calling, you may simply say, “Ms. Jones, I’m just checking in to see how you’re doing. What challenges are you facing? How can I help?” The Law of Reciprocity kicks in – when you help others, they feel compelled to reciprocate and seek out a way to help you in return. Translation: they send you referrals.
If you’re ready to map out your best plan for nurturing your clients and increasing business, we can help. Click here and schedule a free strategy session with us today and get on your way!
Speaker, Author and Certified Coach
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