Top Ten Mistakes In Advertising #5: Customer Retention – Show Your Clients Some Love

We’ve made it to Article #5 and today what I want to share with you is my thoughts on making sure that you stay with the clients that you have. Plus a reminder of how you have to work hard to keep nurturing that relationship. My Mom and Dad passed an expression on to me all those years ago. Sort of stuck with me and I think it’s kind of apropos here. You gotta dance with who you brung. The grammar notwithstanding, you have to please remember to take care of your existing clients with all the passion and attention and devotion you can before you clamor and devote your energy to getting more or new clients.

Did you know, and this research has been substantiated by multiple studies, but did you know the biggest reason people change suppliers across all categories is not because of your prices. You might think they’re too high. It’s not because of your product, it’s already doing the job. A whopping 68% leave because of your indifference to them.

5 Reasons Customers Leave

  1. 1% pass away
  2. 3% move
  3. 14% are lured by a competitor
  4. 4% are turned away by product or service dissatisfaction
  5. 68% leave because of poor attitude or indifference on the part of the service provider

That’s right! You need to show them that you care. You need to be constantly, constantly attending to them.  Think of it as an ongoing dating relationship for 5, 10, 15, 20, 30 years where you are forever trying to impress the guy or the girl about your intentions and always wanting to make them feel important and vital for you. Because the minute you stop giving them that attention, they’re going to find it somewhere else, from another supplier who is prepared to devote the time and energy to keep taking care of them.

But hey Dennis, we need to get new business. Yes, you do. That’s vital for every company.  No one expects you as a business to have only one client. That’s a precarious  business position to be in. When you’re reliant just on one client, one source of revenue, one product or service where your livelihood can be compromised in a heartbeat because of someone else’s decision, that’s a very scary position. Nobody likes to be in that position of being reliant on only one client. The number one supplier gets to being number one because they have multiple sources of income behind them. This insulates them so that when there is a slowdown somewhere there’s an uptake somewhere else. 

Every one of those clients that you have, you must continue to nurture them. Look after them while they’re in your stable or they are going to leave, and I’ve seen it happen too many times because of apathy. Not that there was anything wrong with the service, or the creative efforts of the teams that I was with at other agencies. However, too often, we were too busy running after new business, that we didn’t tend to the business we had in hand as well as we might have.

That’s a terrible feeling when a client leaves because they felt under-appreciated. I don’t want you to experience that. If you already have, you understand the pain that I’m talking about. What I want you to do is take care of your existing clients. They are the ones who pay the bills and they don’t want to be forgotten for a newer, shinier client that you’ve just  gone out and won.

Those clients need you to show them the same attention and affection you had for them when they were a prospect.  Now that they’re a client, they need you to continue to show them that they are important to you. When their needs are consistently met, when you can continue to deliver what it is you promised, they will be your best endorsement for you to win new business.

In fact I’ve had one client go out of his way to attend a pitch with us, when we were going after new business. That’s how much he liked the service and attention that we were delivering him. Tom, from the trucking account actually came to the pitch with us as a personal testimonial to try and win some new business for an automotive client.That was a wonderful reciprocal arrangement. He liked our work so much he wanted to help us get more. So please, please, please I implore you take the time to be on a wonderfully regular warm relationship with your client.

That doesn’t mean hand-holding all the time necessarily. It means showing backbone with them and for them. It also means that you are a resource that they can count on. You need to show you care, and that they can depend on you. 

About the Author: Dennis Kelly is an advertising expert with 30 years of wisdom to share for Office Today readers and is the author of two books “Nine Secrets To Improve Your Advertising” and “57 Media Spikes”. CLICK HERE to learn more. Office Today Readers receive a FREE 30 Minute consultation with Dennis to discuss what your next media moves should be. Send an e-mail with OFFICE TODAY CONSULTATION in subject line and the best times to chat.