It's a new year. Fresh starts typically replace old habits during this season, but that might leave your partnerships (and income) uncertain. As your clients evaluate their expenditures from the previous year and dig into 2018 budgets, rise above their bottom line projections and make a personal impact. Focus on client retention.
It's common knowledge that acquiring a new client costs more than nurturing an established one. Marketing Land explained that this concept of "retention marketing" should be part of your B2B strategy, with an emphasis placed on customer experience. Retaining your current clients gives you more opportunities to up-sell, or cross-sell, as you develop new products and services. Plus, pricing isn't as much of a concern because existing customers already appreciate the value you provide.
So, how can you be sure that your clients stick with you in 2018? The answer is simple: Focus on their needs — not yours.
Solidifying Your Core Client Base
Shift your focus from new client acquisitions to client retention in the new year. Sure, you need both, but putting an emphasis on wowing current customers will help organically generate positive feedback about your services. Online Marketing Institute (OMI) noted that this approach builds trust and profitability for your brand. Here are three suggested strategies:
- Talk to established clients. It's easy to put a newly-acquired account into the funnel and run through the process step-by-step, serving the customers' basic needs. But what if you augmented this workflow by calling your contact to see what their current concerns are, how they liked the last campaign and what they want to see in the future? One-on-one communication reduces assumptions (and potential missteps) as you develop a more detailed understanding of the client's personality and evolving business needs.
- Stand out from competitors. Your clients have choices, and the new year is typically when flashy specials and eager salespeople try to lure their business away from you. Show off your expertise — and drive home the value you provide — by reminding your current clients what they get when they partner with you. Share a white paper that reflects a success story, complete with enticing data. Write a post on the company blog about an award-winning staff member. Post actionable tips on your business social media feeds that your clients can implement immediately.
- Give them unexpected deals. According to OMI, "Consumers are 30 percent more likely to shop with businesses that offer discounts." Why not surprise your most loyal clients with an offer just before a contract renewal notice is sent? You'll delight them with initial savings, reflect the saved cost in their upcoming expense report and potentially secure their business. Everyone wins!
Reach out to a marketing professional who can help you develop a client retention plan for the new year ahead.