I decided to do an experiment, simply out of curiosity. I thought that it might be interesting to see how sending notes to clients who hadn't been in for a while could change business. Would it really make a difference? So, I tracked thirty targeted client's purchases for a quarter. I just happened to send reminder cards to these clients, after their accounts had been dormant. I didn't call them. I just sent each person a card, to remind them we wanted to see them again. It was interesting to see what happened. Keep in mind that these customer's accounts were inactive, and at all zeroes for over a year. Out of the thirty, eight customers came in and made purchases. Here are the results:
Customer #1 made a purchase in my department: $236
Customer #2 made a purchase in my department: $132
Customer #3 made a purchase in my department: $105
Customer #4 made a purchase in my department: $084
Customer #5 made a purchase in my department: $070
Customer #6 made a purchase in my department: $052
Customer #7 made a purchase in my department: $042
Customer #8 made a purchase in my department: $025
Total dollars purchased in my department were....$746
But that's not all. Those customers made purchases in other departments, and a couple came back multiple times, making purchases throughout the store. Here are the rest of their purchases for the quarter...
Customer #1: $0000
Customer #2: $1511.00
Customer #3: $0203.04
Customer #4: $0201.11
Customer #5: $0020.85
Customer #6: $0252.25
Customer #7: $0000
Customer #8: $0478.64
Quarterly sales results for these eight customers altogether: $3412.89. (Keep in mind these numbers translate much higher for B2B.)
The results are very clear. They had no activity on their accounts for over a year, but after sending cards, they came in and made multiple purchases. Simply because someone let them know they were missed. I let them know that myself, and my team wanted to see them again. I told them about our store promotions in my department, as well as other departments. And they came back. It made me think of what could be possible, after making such a minimal effort, and getting those kind of results. What if I did more? What would happen? What if we all did more to invest in relationships with our clients?
Fact: It is seven times more expensive to gain a new client, than to work to keep your existing clients happy.
What does this mean for our businesses?
When I have associates ask me if it's worth it to send thank yous, reminders, and call customers, I just laugh inside. Of course it's worth it! The results are conclusive every time. Not only in dollars, but in customer relationships. Relationships that are going to carry your company during hard times. Lifetime customer satisfaction is more than worth that little bit of effort you put in.
Is there really such a thing as "dead"?
Just like our relationships with our friends and family are ongoing, so are our relationships with our clients. In our relationships, our careers, and anything we do, consistency is the key to seeing results. If you consistently make an effort to keep clients happy, those relationships will never die. You'll keep them alive, and full of vitality. That person will look forward to the times when they will see you, because they know you care about them. The only way the relationship could die is if you neglect it.
Love them, and they will love you
In the end, I realized something. Reaching out to a person is always better than not making an effort. Clients appreciate even the smallest gestures. So reach. And keep reaching. Even if it's been a while. You just might find that they'll reach back, and you'll gain repeat business.
"A flower fades, and drops to the ground. Its seeds scatter over the dry earth. After the rain, new life springs forth from that which has died."
Thanks for stopping by...CC