There would be no entrepreneur who wants a customer for one time. They want the customers to give long term value and have a long term bonding. But we all are doing , what we do only because it gives us a positive answer to “What’s In It for me”. Mutual benefit is the key to have long term relations with our customer/client.
So the question is how many of us follow these three simple steps when connecting with the customer or to be specific at the point of sales.
1. Thank the customer/client for purchasing the product/service from you, by having a thank you note inside the product package or service literature.
2. Appreciate their decision of buying from you.
3. Give them bounce back offers.
These bounce back offers could be in the form of discount coupons, free product samples, free service for certain time, exclusive benefits like giving unadvertised free gifts etc. These freebies attract customers to come to you again and again.
Most of the businesses, give bounce back offers like discounts coupons the customer can use next time, free shipping with the next order or 5 dollars cash back on your next order etc. But this has become so common now days that it doesn’t inspire customers enough to remember us when they go out for purchase.
With creativity and imagination,we can serve our customers in a way which would make them realize that we are meeting their need rather then their want or that we are delighting them.
To amaze customers, we can brainstorm creative bounce back ideas that would differentiate us. We may delight them by giving unexpected/Unadvertised benefits. We may do this by offering free purchase of equal or lesser value from the same brand, wishing them on their birthday, sending them freebies and thanking them for being a patron and loyal. This is an area where we can be more creative with our own ideas of what would delight our customers. The best person to generate these bounce back offers could be a sales person, because he would be meeting so many customers day in and out and can find out what would delight them.
This may be little pricey but would keep customers tied up with the organization and also bring lot of out referrals from these happy customers. If done correct, this would also strengthen the brand positioning and remembrance.
We may also deploy different bounce back offers for different category of customers.
We may categorize our customer base as follows:
Strangers – Less Profitable and Less Loyal
Butterflies – Profitable but not loyal
True Friends – Profitable and loyal
Barnacle – Not profitable but loyal.
After trying out with few types of bounce back offers, we need to find out which one works with our target audience and repeating that strategy again and again.
This reminds me of a quote: Do what you do so well that they will want to see it again and bring their friends-Walt Disney
If you know of any organization that deploys such strategies, let us discuss those examples here.