I helped a company improve customer loyalty that sells computer disks and hard drives directly to consumers.
The global market is flooded with these commodity products, and with companies eager to sell them.
They asked me, “How can we avoid lowering our price when other suppliers are always ready to drop their price lower than ours? How can we cultivate customer loyalty without discounting ourselves right out of business?”
The answer to this dilemma was to deliver more value to improve customer loyalty than companies who compete only on price. But how do you add more value and improve customer loyalty when the product is a commodity?
This company became a fountain of useful ideas, timely information, practical suggestions, cost-effective check-lists, interesting case studies and best-practice techniques all in an effort to improve customer loyalty.
This hard drive company sends customers and prospects monthly e-mail messages of value that improve customer loyalty. Their messages include:
• Reminders to back up critical data weekly (who sends that message to you?)
• Proven ideas on how to manage volumes of data easily in folders, files and storage libraries
• Rotation patterns for data backups with the benefits and drawbacks of each approach
• Easy ways to gain user participation in safe computing and data backup procedures
• A comparison of various options for backing up data onto disks, tape drives, CDs or websites
• Current case studies of major computer crashes and restoration results
• Ideas for backing up and synchronizing your data while at home or on the road
• Screen savers reminding users to back up their data regularly
• Cost analyses of doing data recovery and restoration with and without current backups
• Techniques for keeping paper backups to correspond with digital records
• Interesting milestones in the history of hard drives and information on the latest in data storage technology
Of course they don’t give ALL this information to every customer or prospect all at once. Rather, they trickle it out over time, keeping their company top-of-mind throughout the year and first-in-mind when their prospects and customers are ready to buy.
Key Learning Point To Improve Customer Loyalty
Focusing on product and price keeps you in the same arena as every other vendor, scratching each other with deep discounts until everyone bleeds red ink and no one really helps improve customer loyalty. Don’t go there! Instead, build a better reputation by informing, educating, managing and motivating your customers to think frequently about you and then to take their buying actions to you. Doing this can improve customer loyalty.
Action Steps To Improve Customer Loyalty
Think of the ways customers use and abuse your products and services. What are the top tips for getting maximum value? What are the most common mistakes? Put these insights into easy-to-follow checklists to improve customer loyalty. Write a “best-practice case study” revealing how your smartest customers create maximum business value. Has your company grown, changed or improved over time? Explain this in a story that highlights your continuous commitment. Take these articles and send them out by e-mail, post them on your website, insert them with your products to improve customer loyalty. Don’t reduce your everyday prices – increase your everyday value!
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Copyright, Ron Kaufman. Used with permission. Ron Kaufman is the world’s leading educator and motivator for upgrading customer service and uplifting service culture. He is author of the bestselling “Uplifting Service” book and founder of Uplifting Service. To enjoy more customer service training and service culture articles, visit UpliftingService.com.
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