Do You Really Understand The Lifetime Value Of Your Customers?
Have you calculated the lifetime value of your customers? Take the revenues or potential revenues from that customer and assume a 5, 10 or 20 year relationship and multiply the two numbers together. You will see that customer in an entirely new light! Studies show finding a new customer costs five to six times the cost of maintaining an existing customer. So customer loyalty plays a key role in achieving success in any business.
In order to maintain all your current customers and increase your sales, you need to go beyond customer satisfaction and develop the rapport that will make your customers trust you. We all want to do business with people we like and trust. Great, but what is likeable about you and how do I know I can trust you? Here are some basic tips that will earn your customers trust and produce lifetime value.
1. Listen and show concern.
Try and see things from their point of view. Are you (and your systems) easy to do business with or difficult to business with? Try buying your own service – is the process complicated, do your people sound pleasant and friendly when they answer the phone, do all the links on your website actually work?
Truly listen to your customer's concerns, instead of just using the time they speak to think of what you'll say next. Zig Zigler, the famous sales coach, had a great observation when he said: "You can get anything you want in this life, if you can just help enough other people get what they want". Do you know what your clients want?
2. Use humor.
One of the quickest ways to build rapport is through humor. A good joke or funny story eases tension and breaks down mental barriers. It also shows customers your softer, more human side.
3. Keep a good attitude.
Try to stay positive even if you are having a bad day. Negativity rubs off on people. Sometimes (without knowing it), despite the words coming out of our mouth saying one thing, our body language is screaming at people. So check yourself to make sure your words and actions are congruent. Albert Mehrabian found in his research, that when the words and the delivery were not congruent, 93% of the dominant message was unrelated to our content, our actual choice of words. Remember that "sales is nothing more than the transfer of enthusiasm", so be enthusiastic (no matter how bad you feel)! If you are not obviously sold on it, why would anyone else care?
4. Show Respect.
Treat your customers as you would your friends and family. Show them that you genuinely care about their needs. Always think – would I make this offer to my grandmother, would I treat my grandmother like this? If you adopt these simple ideas, life gets easier. It gets easier because you spend less time "hunting" for business and enjoy more "farming", with regular repeat business, because your clients like and trust you.