Get to Know Your Customers

Get to Know Your Customers Day is observed annually on the third Thursday of each quarter (January, I'm Your CustomerApril, July, October). This is a day to reach out to your customers and get to know them better. However, should it really be necessary to designate a day each quarter to get to know our customers?

Getting to know customers (all the time) is a requirement for building a successful and thriving business or practice!

We have heard it recanted over-and-over again, “People do business with people they know, like and trust”. A large measure of building that level of trust is staying in touch. Likewise, the primary goals of any business are what? Get more profitable customers to buy, buy more and buy more often.

Start to ‘get to know’ your customers by staying in touch and by building a profile to fully understand their buying preferences, how to reach and market to them.

  1. Who is your ideal customer?
  2. What is the best way to connect with them?
  3. When should you contact them?
  4. Where are they located?
  5. How do they like to be sold to?
  6. Why did they buy from you?

What they buy, how they buy and their frequency of purchase is also valuable information to capture about each customer. Having this type of business intelligence readily available will enable you to more effectively target your marketing efforts to customer buying habits and in doing so, help increase the success rate and frequency of purchase.

Why go to all this extra effort to profile your ideal customer and capture detailed information about each of them?

The devil is in the details. If you can’t answer the six questions above, then you really don’t know your customers. From my coaching experience, #1, #5 and #6 seem to be the hardest questions for most to answer. So, how do you go about acquiring critical market data about your customers? Start by asking them … it’s that simple (and easy).

Understanding the demographics of your targeted customers is critical to the success of any business. Here are some “fun facts” to consider to amplify this point:

  1. 20% of customers = 80% of profits.
  2. 30% of customers = 15% of profits.
  3. 50% of customers =   5% of profits.
  4. It’s 6-7 times more expensive to acquire new customers than retain existing ones.
  5. 60% – 80% of lost customers reported to be Satisfied or Very Satisfied prior to defecting.
  6. 2/3 of customers leave because they feel neglected.
  7. A 5% improvement in customer retention rates can yield a 25% to 100% increase in profits.

Although these percentages will vary for every business, a small number of customers often dominate the revenue and profit achieved. This principle is called Pareto’s Law. It is also a key indicator of the high risk associated with losing major customers, and the financial benefits of staying engaged.

Invest the time to get to know your customers and stay in frequent contact through a variety of media – i.e. blog, newsletter, product announcements, special promotions, surveys, etc., as well as scheduled visits. Doing so will enable you to add value to the customer’s business long-term, while being positioned as a true partner and not just another vendor.

Good luck and good selling!

John

 

COPYRIGHT © 2016 John Carroll