Trends Driving the Loyalty Marketing Industry What Nobody Teaches You About Getting Your Star… Dmitry Dragilev is the founder of JustReachOut.io – a SaaS which has helped 5000+ startups and businesses get featured in press on an ongoing basis. He is also the founder of PRThatConverts.com course teaching entrepreneurs “how to do PR right” and occasionally takes on fun client projects through his consultancy, Criminally Prolific.Dmitry has spent over a decade in the world of marketing and PR and was previously a software engineer. He has published 1,500+ articles in the last decade and currently writes for Entrepreneur, Forbes, TheNextWeb, SmallBizTrends and Business.com as well as Moz Blog, Ahrefs Blog and many others. Dmitry loves working with customers looking to independently control their PR and is so proud of the entrepreneurs he’s taught to speak to journalists and focus on relationship building.When he’s not at his standing desk working beside his business partner and wife Corey, Dmitry can be found picking heavy things up and putting them down again at Crossfit or running alongside his toddlers scooting through the park. With This One Question, You’ll Never Need an Ic… Related Posts AI is Not the Holy Grail of Sales, at Least Not… Acquiring new customers may seem like the Holy Grail for most businesses. New customers can be most important for startups with tight budgets. When funds are limited, it’s understandable that you may believe only new customers will boost revenue as quickly as by increasing the customer base.The mistake that some businesses make is staying in “customer acquisition” mode forever.While acquiring new customers is crucial to growing any business, what many companies fail to realize is that this is only the first step towards building a successful enterprise. What’s just as, or perhaps even more critical, is customer retention. Failure to nurture new customers can quickly increase churn. So why in the world should businesses worry so much about churn in the first place?What’s wrong with focusing on attracting new customers who are also bringing in revenue?Several marketing studies that have been done show that losing existing customers costs a lot more than acquiring new ones. According to Harvard Business Review acquiring a new customer can cost anywhere from 5 to 25 times more than retaining an existing one.Another study by Frederick Reichheld of Bain & Company indicates that increasing customer retention by only five percent can generate more than a 25 percent increase in profit. Unfortunately, not many businesses consider the financial impact of a high churn rate. They keep focusing on putting in more time and money towards generating new leads and sales. As a result, they struggle just to survive, much less thrive.All studies indicate that putting the same time and effort towards keeping existing customers happy would be far more beneficial. And sustainable. Loyal customers bring in far more profits with much less energy. They are already familiar with your products and services. They trust you and are happy with your customer service.All of this puts them in a better mood to keep buying more from you. Happy customers bring in another significant benefit – they act as ambassadors for your company, bringing in new customers through word of mouth recommendations. You can’t beat that for free marketing. While it’s impossible to reduce churn rate to 0%, there are ways you can do to prevent and stop excessive customer churn.Here are five specific strategies which will help you reduce customer churn rates.# 1- Provide Stellar Customer Service. Always.You might say “Duh Dmitry, this is obvious!” Stay with me though, I promise this section will be valuable.Unsatisfactory service is the #1 reason why customers leave a company.With so many choices available today, customers refuse to compromise. And why should they? If they’re not happy with your service, they know they have plenty of other options to choose from.Consider this scenario – every time you lose a customer, it’s your competitor who scores one up on you, making them a little bit stronger. As they go from strength to strength increasing their loyal customer base with your ex-customers, your business will soon be left biting the dust.The good news is providing consistently outstanding customer services does not have to be overwhelming. It’s merely a lot of little things done right. Here are the ones I tend to focus on:Be Empathetic.Customers don’t want to be treated like just another account or statistic. They want to be recognized as the individuals that they are and feel like they are truly heard. Incorporate a culture of empathy among your employees involves.There is an excellent example from the interview with CultureAmp on Nextiva blog talking about the importance of empathy in customer service and how to train your staff to be more empathetic during your interactions with customers.Communicate regularly.Chances are you will only hear from a customer when they have a complaint about your product or service. Why wait for that to happen?Far better to be proactive and initiate conversations. This prevents small, manageable problems from blowing up into a full-scale disaster.You don’t necessarily need to have anything pressing to discuss.Kick it off with a welcome letter with details of who to get in touch with in case they need any help at all.Follow up with regular emails reminding them you are there to help.Regular communication tells the customer their welfare is top of your mind. It also allows you to recognize unarticulated needs and respond to recommendations.Personalize communication. Always address the customer by their name. It’s a small detail that makes a huge difference and goes a long way towards forging a stronger relationship with the customer. Make sure you understand which channels your customers prefer to receive communication on from your brand. In today’s day and age with so many telemarketing calls and cold emails, 89% of consumers prefer to use text messages to interact with businesses as primary means of communication. When you personalize your connections, be aware of the channel you’re using to communicate.Add value at every touchpoint.Think of every correspondence as an opportunity to reinforce the value propositions of your products and services. Explain how your offerings can continue to help a customer reach their goals. Helping a customer meet their goals will be a win-win for both you and your customer.Give top priority to addressing customer complaints.Bad news travels fast and can have a domino effect on your business. Losing one customer does not just translate to losing the business that that one customer brings in. It also means the loss of potential new customers. 67% of customer churn is preventable if firms resolve issues the first time they occur.Assigning your best employees to handle customer complaints ensures that all issues are resolved efficiently and immediately.Follow back after resolving a problem.You may think you’ve addressed the complaint and fixed the problem, but is the customer happy with the solution you’ve provided?Is it what they were looking for — is it what they want?Did the solution hold up, or did the problem recur?You’ll never know unless you follow up.Some customers may just give up after the first unsatisfactory experience. Instead of raising another complaint, they may find it easier to take their business elsewhere.#2 – Focus On Proper Onboarding, Education & Engagement.Just providing customers with a product, however good, is not enough if they don’t understand exactly how it works or the full potential of what it can do. Offering product demos, video tutorials and free pieces of training that highlight all the features of your products and services provides customers with better user experience.Proper onboarding focuses on improving customer experience and providing useful information to ensure the customer gets maximum value from their purchase. It also fosters an ongoing relationship with customers.The onboarding experience is a multi-step process that starts the moment you close the sale.Elements Of Saas Customer OnboardingQuicksprout University does an excellent job of taking onboarding to the next level by educating and engaging their visitors with more than 120 videos teaching them every aspect of online marketing.Proper onboarding supported by relevant education is integral to reducing customer frustration.#3 Listen To Your Customers.Two of the most accessible and most affordable ways to listen to your customers is by conducting surveys and soliciting feedback. Both of these strategies allow you to assess customer satisfaction and give you valuable insight into what areas you need to improve, or maybe even change.The key to a successful survey is to keep it as short as possible and easy to complete while asking the right questions.Good survey questions ask short questions that require the survey taker to tick a box with the right answer or give a yes or no answer.Good survey question “How well do our products meet your needs?”“On a scale of 0 to 10, how likely are you to recommend our products or services to others?”Bad survey question: “Are you happy with your purchase? If yes, tell us what you liked most about it. If no, tell us why not.”Customers are more likely to answer questions that require them to tick a box or answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ rather than write out lengthy answers.#4 Reward Your Most Loyal Customers.Everyone looks forward to receiving gifts. Show customers you appreciate their loyalty by offering them generous gifts. It doesn’t cost much, but the rewards can be phenomenal.These examples demonstrate that rewards are very effective at accelerating business growth.Dropbox — Existing Dropbox users that procured new signups were rewarded with additional storage space. Their referral program earned Dropbox 4 million unique users in as little as 15 months. All new users got the same incentive on signing up, tempting them to stay on as loyal customers.Airbnb — Airbnb offered referrers $25 in travel credit for every new member that took their first trip. Hosting a guest for the first time earned them an additional $75 in travel credit. As a result, loyal Airbnb customers continued to stay loyal.Amazon Prime — This is one of the most widely known rewards programs in recent times. Amazon Prime members are rewarded with a slew of benefits, from special deals to free delivery.There are several different ways you can reward loyal customers:Set up loyalty rewards programs.Airlines and hotels keep their customers loyal by offering generous flier and loyalty miles. These work as a huge incentive to keep customers coming back for more.A successful loyalty rewards program should be relevant to your business and provide additional value over and above your primary offerings. Consider offering free access to a premium product even if only for a limited period. Gift cards and other freebies can also go a long way in making a customer feel appreciated, and more likely to stay around for more.Some ideas for you to consider:Celebrate customer milestones.Has a customer been with you five years or maybe even just three or two years? Show them you appreciate their business with a small gift, preferably something you know they’d love – tickets to the opera, a bottle of wine, or a swag bag with select branded items.A customer celebrating a milestone wedding anniversary may appreciate a complimentary meal for two at a swanky new restaurant.Offer discounts on recurring subscriptions or extensions.Resisting a good discount is hard. Even someone who may have been in two minds about renewing their subscription is sure to jump in and take you up on the offer.Host giveaways and contests.Whether it’s a camera for the best photograph in a specific category, or a laptop for the most creative flyer promoting your product, engaging customers in friendly competitions is a fun way to build stronger bonds and keep customers loyal.#5 Stay Abreast Of Market Trends In Your Industry.Every industry operates within its own unique dynamics. Understanding these industry-specific dynamics and staying on top of market trends allows you to compare your progress with that of your competitors.Monitor your competition closely. Developing a competitive monitoring strategy is vital to your business success.How are your competitors attracting new customers?What are they offering as bonuses or rewards to loyal customers?What is their churn rate?If your churn rate is higher than the average in your industry, it’s time to take stock, re-evaluate and adopt a new strategy that focuses more on keeping existing customers and less on acquiring new ones.Over to you.The writing is on the wall: Unhappy customers = Higher churn rate and Higher churn rate = Lower revenues and profits. We all understand this; it’s just a matter of getting up and doing something about the churn rate we all have with our businesses.It’s tempting to focus on inbound leads and just continue increasing traffic and conversion. If you have a leaky funnel and your customers churn at a higher rate then similar businesses in your niche you will end up working 3X as hard just to keep up with your competition. You’ll have a heck of a time trying to outpace them.Churn rate is one of the most overlooked metrics and yet one of the most important ones to work on for your business.Over to you! I’d love to hear which one of these five tactics you plan on using in 2019. Tags:#churn rate#CRM#CRM startups#customer relationship#customer service Dmitry Dragilev
By: Jason M. Jowers, MS, MFTPixabay[Emoticons by freeGraphicToday on November 25, 2017, CC0]Stress and anxiety can sometimes make it hard to focus on the good and simple things in life. We all have bad days, where the negatives seem to outweigh the positives. How can we foster experiences of happiness, gratitude, contentment, and love during times of hardship? These positive emotions play a pivotal role in in our ability to cope through adversity.Dr. Michele Tugade, Professor in the Department of Psychological Science at Vassar College, presents this two minute lecture series on how experiencing positive emotions actually increases resilience when we face adversity. But what is resilience? According to Tugade, resilience is the ability to “bounce back” after experiencing stress.She specializes in the field of Positive Psychology, which focuses on positive emotions and people’s strengths when facing difficult times. She gives insight on the role that positive emotions can play; that they can be a time for reflection where you can broaden your scope of thoughts and can lead to seeing the world in a new light. These emotions also build up important resources and a bank of accumulated positivity that people can access during difficult times.Dr. Tugade doesn’t discount the experiences of negative emotions either. In fact, she highlights their benefits as part of the human experience. When we face a challenge or a stressor, negative emotions like anger and fear prepare and motivate us to either face that challenge head on or to live to fight another day.Putting positivity into practice can be as simple as smiling at a stranger you pass on the sidewalk or holding the door open for someone. Small acts of kindness like these can go a long way with people.Want to learn more about positive emotions and resilience? MFLN Family Development has resources for you! Be sure to check out one of our past blog’s here on using positive emotions in everyday life. Also, watch our webinar, “Bending, Not Breaking: Resilience and the Role of Positive Emotions during Times of Stress,” from our 2017 Virtual Learning Conference.ReferencesDon’t Worry, Be Happy. (2009). Retrieved from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SQ6Vv8gHq8wThis post was written by Jason M. Jowers, MS, MFT, of the MFLN Family Development Team. The Family Development team aims to support the development of professionals working with military families. Find out more about the Military Families Learning Network Family Development concentration on our website, Facebook, and Twitter. You can also listen to our Anchored. podcast series via iTunes and our website.
The Supreme Court on Friday stayed a Bombay High Court order directing registration of a First Information Report against Maharashtra MLC and NCP leader Dhananjay Munde in an alleged illegal purchase of government land case.A Vacation Bench of Justices Ajay Rastogi and Surya Kant also issued notices to the Maharashtra government and the complainant in the case, Rajabhau Phad.During the hearing, the Bench queried, “what was the exceptional feature in the case” that led the High Court to order the registration of the FIR.In his petition, Mr. Munde, sought stay of the High Court order that directed the police to file a case against him for allegedly grabbing land at Pus village, Ambajogai taluk, Beed district belonging to government.The top court, however, declined to go into the merits of the case as of now.Earlier in the morning, the Beed police lodged a case of cheating and forgery against Mr. Dhananjay Munde and 14 others in the case.An FIR under Sections 420 (cheating), 465 (forgery), 468 (forgery for the purpose of cheating), 464 (false document) and 471 (using as genuine a forged document) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) was lodged against Mr. Munde and the others at the Bardapur police station.The police action follows a June 11 order of the Aurangabad Bench of the Bombay High Court, directing an FIR to be registered against Mr. Munde, who is Leader of Opposition (LoP) in the Maharashtra Legislative Council (MLC), within four days of the court order.The court had passed the directive on a petition filed by Mr. Phad, who had accused the NCP leader of illegally purchasing land for his Jagmitra sugar factory in Beed district.According to Mr. Phad’s petition, the disputed plot of land at Pus village in Beed’s Ambejogai tehsil belonged to the State government and was given to the Belkhandi Math in Beed as a ‘gift’ to its chief priest or mahant, Ranit Giri.In 2012, Mr. Munde had purchased the 17-acre plot from Mr. Giri’s heirs by applying for non-agricultural status of the land.The petitioner had challenged the purchase, stating that as the land originally belonged to the government, it could not be sold to anybody.Stressing that the land for the Jagmitra Sugar Mills was purchased “in strict accordance to rules,” Mr. Munde has refuted the allegations against him, stating that “misleading information” was presented against him in the court.He has alleged that Mr. Phad’s complaint against him smacked of “political vendetta.”The NCP leader said that Mr. Phad, who is the son-in-law of scam-tainted businessman Ratnakar Gutte, was attempting to frame him as he had exposed the farm loan fraud allegedly committed by Mr. Gutte, a prominent sugar baron from the Marathwada region considered to be close to the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party.Mr. Munde’s lawyers have said that there was no mention of the land belonging to the government at the time of the purchase in 2012.This is not the first time the NCP leader has found himself in a soup over shadowy dealings.In October 2013, the Beed District Central Co-operative Bank had lodged a complaint pertaining to fraudulent behaviour against Mr. Munde and 15 others at the Parli police station in Beed.The BDCC had alleged Mr. Munde, as chairman and director of the Parli-based Jagmitra Co-operative Cotton Ginning and Pressing Mill, had taken loans from the bank amounting to ₹11.79 crore between 2003 and 2011 and had failed to repay them. Despite the lodging of an FIR and the filing of a charge sheet against the NCP leader, a local court had stayed Mr. Munde’s arrest.
zoom An investigation has been launched into a possible cartel in the bunker sector in the Netherlands and Belgium, according to the Dutch competition authority.This investigation involves several companies that are active in the ports of Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Antwerp, which may have concluded illegal price-fixing agreements, according to the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM).The Dutch Public Prosecution Service provided ACM with valuable information about the bunker sector coming from the police. That information was one of the reasons to launch this investigation. ACM has already conducted several dawn raids in this sector.Fines for cartel activities imposed on companies can be as high as 40 percent of their combined global turnover. The maximum fine on individuals that have exercised leadership over cartels is EUR 900,000.In the coming months, ACM will assess whether the Dutch Competition Act has indeed been violated by investigating the actual practices in greater detail.