When we talk about business growth, a lot of our attention automatically leans towards lead generation and sometimes we forget the importance of reengaging our current customers through B2B customer retention. Organisations and brands who prioritise and develop loyal and long-standing relationships with their customers are often the most successful. In fact, it can be up to 25 times more expensive to bring on a new customer than it is to keep an existing one.
Customer retention is a company’s ability to retain its customers over time — it’s a percentage that measures how many customers are retained by the end of a given time period – Hubspot
Beyond the cost-saving, satisfied customers are known to spend more money, make more purchases more often and of course, refer family and friends. With B2B buyers taking a much longer time to filter through the sales funnel, keeping your current customers engaged is a great way to remain profitable and successful. So, what are the best ways to encourage return business from your customers?
1. Keep in Touch
We have all heard the saying, ‘out of sight, out of mind’. As B2B businesses navigate a consumer market, we face more competition than we have previously seen. It is crucial that companies remain in contact with their clients, firstly to keep your organisation front of mind and secondly, to deepen your relationships with customers.
2. Personalise your Marketing
Where possible, try to include as much personalisation as you can. Most of the time, this will just be a ‘first name’ but, as you learn more about your customers, you can start to add more personalisation to the content you send to them and then further marketing if they engage in your content. Thankfully, this is becoming easier as CRM technology has improved. Many email marketing CRMs make it easier to personalise emails to your customers without your business having to think about it, giving you the ability to tailor content to their industry.
3. Ask for Feedback and Follow Up
By asking your customers for feedback it shows that you value their opinion and further, that your company is consistently looking to improve. Encourage your sales team to ask their clients for feedback following the deal or delivery and ensure that they follow it up with the necessary internal teams. For more information on how to plan, manage and execute referral/feedback marketing, check out our previous blog: Leveraging Client Relationships and Building a Strong Referral Program.
4. Build a Customer Loyalty Program
Loyalty programs are a great way to keep customers engaged. Loyalty programs encourage repeat business and allow your organisation to identify the customers that are most dedicated to you. These programs also provide additional insight into consumer purchasing patterns, needs and interests, which can inform your personalisation, as mentioned above.
5. Customer events
Social events are a great way to keep your customers engaged and make them feel appreciated. At the end of the day, business is dependent on relationships; be that with customers, colleagues, or partners, so it is important to acknowledge those relationships outside of the workplace and give back to your most loyal consumers.
Keeping your customers engaged, particularly in the B2B world, is crucial for long-standing success. With new customers navigating the B2B sales funnel slowly, retaining current clients can ensure you are driving your sales pipeline and covering marketing budgets. Attracting new customers and business will always be a priority, however, it is important to ensure you are not neglecting your existing ones.