Whether your former customers have simply faded away or signed up with the competition, Adam Boyden, president of Conduit, says it could be worth your while to try to re-establish a connection. He says it’s up to you as a business owner to reach out and draw back those once-active patrons, converting them to solid clients again.
A great starting point is to ask these customers why they’ve quit coming around. With little effort or expense, you can create an online survey to help you gather the information. Ask direct questions about the things they liked and disliked, soliciting suggestions for improvement. This opens the door for a follow-up contact, as you can let customers know you’ve acted upon their input. People like to be heard, and you just might gain back a few customers by taking the time to ask about and act upon their concerns.
When you conduct the survey, make sure to include questions about customers’ preferred methods of communication. This will guide you in determining which social networking strategies are right for your demographic. Is it Twitter, Facebook, e-mail, text marketing or some mix thereof? As you learn how your former customers interact, you can gain direct access – so long as you keep your communications meaningful in their eyes. Again, use the survey to determine what’s relevant – special offers, educational info, invitations to exclusive events, etc.
Testimonials from satisfied customers should be part of your marketing message to clients who have gone missing. In such a strong word-of-mouth referral industry, a client could be won back simply by hearing from someone else who’s crazy about your customer service, variety of equipment and lotion options, or special packages. Remember that real-life referrals – even among virtual strangers – can go a long way.
All in all, one of the best ways to stay top-of-mind with former customers is to stay in front of them. Whether that’s through a content-rich Web site that’s frequently updated, or by extending special “return customer” specials, make sure you aren’t writing off former clients as unattainable ones. With a little creativity and initiative on your part, taking the time to remind these patrons why they signed on with you in the first place can make all the difference in whether you’ll have the chance to welcome them back.
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