The average cost of one lost customer to a business is £220, that's why today, it's all about retaining customers. And while 70% of business agree it’s cheaper to retain customers than it is to find new ones, only 30% actually make the effort to win back lost customers. That’s a lot of money to lose out on particularly for a small business. But thankfully with a little marketing magic, you can create specific marketing campaigns to target lost customers, that will encourage them to come back again and again and improve your customer loyalty. Here are some ideas on how you can mend that relationship:
Research shows that the two main reasons customers leave are because they were treated badly or they’re not satisfied by the business's product or service. But before you can start you need to know why they left you in the first place. Firstly, monitor and review social media sites closely, to see if they have told you why they won’t be returning. You might also want to consider asking your customers to take part in a quick survey in return for a free coffee or treatment, depending on your business.
Tools such as SurveyMonkey and Typeform are great for this, as you can email them directly to your customers. You might want to consider asking questions such as, “Was our customer service lacking?” or “Has waiting times ever caused you to leave?” Once the problem has been identified, you can work to correct it. Then create a marketing campaign showing that you have listened to your customers and are changing your ways to make their experience better.
A great example of this is Domino's. Domino’s collected feedback from customers and found they had a problem with the taste of their pizza. The company reacted to the comments, fixed the problem and explained the solution to its customers. The result was "The Pizza Turnaround" campaign that explained how the company listened to customer feedback to make a better pizza, and therefore, improved their customer loyalty. But this can be done no matter the size of your business. It’s easy!
Become a shepherd and heard your flock back to you.
Nothing entices people back more than a good deal. So why don’t you offer your inactive customers a special deal via email, to return to your business? Remember to use phrases that will appeal to them like:
But don’t be a cheapskate! Ensure the deal is really good, so it’s worth their time to come back. A discount from 25-50% off is great or if you can’t offer a discount, why not give them a 2 for 1 offer when they come with a friend for lunch? That way not only are you retaining customers, you’re gaining a new customer.
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Social media allows you to know what your customer is thinking as they usually vent their frustrations through it, particularly on Twitter. Social media engagement is one of the easiest ways to boost customer loyalty. Use this to your advantage. Use their feedback. Got a new menu? Bring back that sandwich you got rid of, or launch a discount day because you’ve put up your prices. You can even create a marketing campaign out of it by doing a poll on what menu item should come back. Get people talking, not only will it drum up business but it will also catch the attention of those customers that are lost out in the wilderness.
A great example of this is Tim Horton's. They are a coffee chain, that launched a "Bring It Back” campaign in their Canadian market. The company gave social fans a list of five treats that were once on the menu and asked the audience to pick one item to bring back. Fans started leaving comments, with the #TimsBringitBack, on all of the company’s social sites. The item with the most comments was put back on the menu. This is simple to do and costs little to no money.
Don’t generalise your customer base. They are all individuals with different needs. When it comes to retaining customers and speaking to ones you've lost, you should personalise the email messages that you send them. The deals and discounts should also be personalised. Focus them around the items they have purchased in the past. And on a day they would normally have visited on, as chances are they still have the time to pop by on their regular day but are now choosing not to.
With these four methods, you’ll bring those lost customers back to your business in no time at all. And possibly some new ones. Want to find out more about how Swipii can drive customer loyalty? Click here now!