Winter Warmer Thoughts for your Clients

Melanie Morris
Xero NZ Head of Bookkeeping
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Mel Morris looks at how to keep existing clients from going cold towards your services.

Many of us provide a service for which our customers have a choice – a choice to spend their hard-earned money on our services, or to try somewhere else for a change to see if the grass is in fact greener.

With this in mind, it’s important to consider the following questions:

  • Why do your customers choose you?
  • What is your point of difference?
  • What can you offer on top of the standard service you provide?

Often the easiest way to reflect on your business is to look at your own purchasing decisions and habits: when you search for a service, do you read the quick Google preview? Is there a Facebook page with customer reviews? Is it easy to contact the service provider? Is it easy to book an appointment? Will they remind you with a text message prior to your appointment?

In recent times I have had to engage with an orthodontist, a barber and an acupuncture clinician (it sounds like one of those bad bar jokes!).

In all three cases, I went with personal referrals and the easiest to contact and book in with. For me, it makes sense that if they have effective systems in place, the service I will receive will be streamlined and not waste my time. I’m happy to say all three services delivered just that.

Let’s say you do have the systems in place for great customer onboarding. Of course you offer a great service, so what is the next step you can take to further develop that customer loyalty?

Again, think about how you like to feel and be treated. Most of us like to belong to something, to be included, to receive engagement from our service provider and have a sense of community. It is a fine line between engagement and spamming though, so be mindful of overdoing it.

Some ideas to send winter warmer thoughts to your customers:

  1. Send them a nice SMS message if you have not seen them for an unexpected length of time.
  2. Prepare a newsletter, containing information on the latest in your industry, or offering a special treat or deal.
  3. Utilise social media to keep in touch and grow your community. This can be as simple as a Facebook page or Instagram account. Remember, you don’t need to shout about how great you are, the content can be something abstract that’s taken your interest, although I do advise including a call to action at the end to link it back to your service.

At the end of the day, just be human and be yourself – this is the main reason that people come to you. Know your market and keep in touch with them.

And, for further information on what is happening in small business you may want to check out our NZ Small Business Insights.

That’s it for now, keep warm.

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