Watch Frank Kern Website Videos and learn how to keep your members. It’s the frozen heart of winter and the pipes in your home are as icy as the arctic air outside. Trying to find a plumber seems less likely than arranging an on-the-fly papal audience.
But not if you’re a regular customer of Benjamin Franklin Plumbing, based in Rogersville, Mo. You may be part of the company’s “front of the line” program, which means the plumbing shop gives you priority status. You will be the first one called and, if need be, will be serviced the next morning — no waiting in line not knowing when the call will come.
Sound cool? Even cooler than your pipes in winter? Sound like the kind of perk that could make you a lifelong customer? Indeed.
Programs and strategies akin to Frank’s “front of the line” program can be just the thing to transform a one-shot sale into a lifelong customer. Granted, there are scads of ways to do that, but here are seven that may be just the wrinkle that fits your business:
1. Deliver what you’re say you’re going to do.
“If the business can’t deliver on basics, then any other steps will be wasted effort,” says Ruth Stevens of eMarketing Strategy, a New York consulting company. In other words, don’t swing for the fences when you can’t even lay down a bunt. It may seem ludicrous, but far too many businesses focus on ways to keep customers, only to lose sight of the fact that their product or service simply isn’t what it should be. Make certain that the core of what you do is deserving of long-term customer loyalty, and then look for ways to nurture it.
2. Expect the best.
Another stumbling block to establishing customers for life is turning the tables. Many businesses wait for customers to “prove” their worth before they start to take steps to cement the relationship. Instead, approach everyone as a potential lifer: “Don’t adopt the mindset that a customer must ‘earn’ their way into your good graces as a business,” says Erin Duckhorn of Crucial Technology, an online memory upgrade provider. “Instead, we assume from the very beginning that this new customer is going to be a long-term loyal customer and treat them as such.” By treating your customers respectfully from the start and expecting that they will pay on time — rather than prodding them about payment deadlines before it ever becomes an issue — can engender long-term customer loyalty, Duckhorn says.
3. From there, go beyond the usual.
Once the basics are clicking, one way to win a customer for life is to consistently exceed the expected. Establish a baseline of good, and make it policy to climb to better and beyond. For instance, E.D. Foods, an online provider of soups and other food products, wins plaudits for placing orders for items that customers want but can’t find in its online catalog. “It’s really simple,” says co-owner Leslie Eiser. “Have great products and provide customers with service beyond what they were expecting.”
Watch Frank Kern Website Videos and learn more tips.