Client Retention: How to Leverage Existing Customers to Grow Your Business

Picture1As a business owner or C-level executive, how often do you stop to consider if your customers are happy? Do you know if they’re engaged? How about, do you know how they define success?

The topic of our most recent Meeting of the Minds event held at The Refectory was how companies can grow their business by spending more time nurturing existing customer relationships as opposed to pounding the pavement to find new customers.

Studies have shown that it costs seven times more to attract a new customer than it is to retain an existing one. And in a survey we conducted prior to the event, we were pleased to see that more than 40% of participants spend more than 50% of their focus on current customer relationships versus obtaining new customers.

Additionally, we discovered nearly 80% of participants don’t know how their customers define success.

These results tied in nicely to our interactive discussion led by Bill Kiefaber, President/Partner of Marketing Works where he highlighted what we believe to be five rules to build lasting customer/client/member relationships.

  1. Define your ideal customer.
  • What is their annual and lifetime contribution to your business?
  • What do they value?
  • How do they make decisions?
  • Do they share similar business characteristics (e.g., industry) or psychographic/demographic characteristics (e.g., role in the company, role in the purchase process, etc.)?
  1. Understand your customers’ definition of success.
  • Know their goals and objectives
  • Define together how you will measure success (must be specific)
  1. Set the rules of engagement.
  • Understand your customers’ journey from prospecting to retention
  • Identify ways to keep your customers engaged (e.g., senior leader outreach, appreciation events, loyalty programs, etc.)
  1. Measure and monitor.
  1. Continuous improvement.
  • Take action based on customer feedback
  • Monitor, adjust and refine continually

If you are interested in defining ways to improve customer retention, please contact Bill Kiefaber at or 614-540-5520 for a complimentary one-to-one strategy session.

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