Even in the best of economic times, customer churn is a harsh reality that all businesses must deal with, no matter how high the quality of their products or how elevated their level of service. And after a long-running crisis as widespread and impactful as COVID-19, businesses everywhere are struggling to recover from some of the highest levels of churn they have ever experienced.
But as the nation begins to emerge from the difficult business climate created by the pandemic, hope is on the horizon — and opportunities for a rebound are becoming more plentiful every day. Among the best routes to a much-needed business boost: winning back customers lost as a result of the crisis. Below are seven strategies designed to re-attract customers lost to pandemic-related churn.
- Stay in touch: During today’s socially distanced times, many consumers are longing for connections. Savvy business owners can capitalize on the opportunity this presents by reaching out to regular customers via social media, email, the phone or even (eventually) in person. The message conveyed could be as simple as “We miss seeing you” or “We’re looking forward to seeing you again soon” — anything that keeps the business top of mind with consumers and shows that the business appreciates them is likely to be endearing and build customer loyalty.
- Make it personal: Offering customers personalized attention is an especially endearing way for businesses to show customers they care. When making the outreach efforts mentioned above, business representatives can step up the level of personalized service by inquiring about customers’ individual needs and whether the business can do anything to better serve them, then accommodating customer requests in whatever ways possible.
- Employ the email list: For businesses that have not already begun communicating with their customers via email newsletters or email offers, this is a great time to start. Content can cover the best ways to use the business’s products and services, special offers, information on upcoming business-related events and even general news pertaining to developments in the business’s industry that are of interest to the consumer. This is also a great way for businesses to establish themselves as experts in their fields by offering tips and guidance geared toward helping their customers.
- Implement automation: Modern marketing-automation solutions and other automated task tools such as Constant Contact and iContact make it easier for businesses to perform a range of tasks related to marketing, customer communications, sales and analytics, just to name a few. Implementing these chore-trimming tools can help businesses stay in better contact with their customers and spend more time providing stellar service while focusing on their craft.
- Step up social: Maintaining an active presence on social media helps keep a business’s followers (often composed of the business’s best customers) well informed about what is going on at the business while at the same time keeping the business at the top of the consumer’s mind. Especially if a COVID-related business slowdown has created more free time for staff members, this is a great chance to start putting added energy and elevated focus on social media posts and content.
- Offer interaction alternatives: Especially with so many customers practicing social distancing to stem the spread of the coronavirus, now is the perfect time for businesses to get inventive with the ways customers can purchase their products or use their services. Finding ways to conduct more business online or over the phone, along with implementing new paths to procurement that require less contact with others, such as curbside pickup or delivery to the home, will allow more consumers to keep patronizing the business while limiting health risks.
- Present incentives: Offering customers incentives to stick with a business is always an effective method to keep them around and it can be the perfect way to bring them back after a crisis like the pandemic. Businesses looking to entice customers back should consider implementing special offers, promotional discounts and loyalty programs to provide their customers with added incentives to return.
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