Preaching to the Converted; Why Marketing to your Existing Client Base is so Effective
Marketing a business can be approached in two ways – you can attract new customers or clients or you can encourage your existing customers and clients to increase their spend with your company. Both are important but many marketers focus their attention on expanding their reach (attracting new customers) rather than up selling to those who are already loyal to them.
Your customer database provides an enormous amount of information that can help you grow your business from within your base of existing clients or customers. First of all you need to make sure you are capturing useful information about your existing clients. Knowing their contact details, how much and how frequently they have spent with you and what they buy, is critical. Analysing this data will show you if your client base is growing, stagnant or in decline.
Look at your inactive clients and consider why they may have stopped using your business as frequently as they used to. Have price rises bitten too deeply, are you losing ground to your competitors, or is your service or product no longer relevant to them? Have you lost contact with them because your communication methods are not frequent enough or just not working? If you don’t know the answers to these questions you won’t be able to solve the problem. Get back in contact with your inactive clients and find out why they haven’t used your business recently.
To maintain your relevance to your existing client base you might have to rethink the services or products you provide to ensure you are meeting your clients’ changing needs.
A client that I work with has a large database of clients and prospects that has been collected over 15 years in business. Recently, I have undertaken a telemarketing project for this client to find the contact details of people whose email addresses are no longer working. This activity has proven to be very successful and given the client a new window of opportunity with old clients and prospects. When was the last time you called old clients?
Maintaining existing client relationships is important to any business. Attracting new customers is vital, but once you’ve engaged them in your business strengthening your relationship with them will make sound financial and marketing sense.