A key to growth: stay close to your current customers

  • 19-05-2020
  • In: Marketing
  • Door: Olivier Janssen

A common mistake made by companies looking to grow their business is to focus entirely on new customers and product groups.

They often lose sight of the potential impact to the bottom line of their existing customers, those companies who they already have a deep relationship with.

This is particularly the case during times of crisis, such as the Covid-19 situation that everyone is struggling with at the moment.

Here are eight key tips for how to stay close to your current customers, to understand their challenges and see how you can help them to succeed.

1. Communicate with your customers

The last thing you want is for your clients to end up purchasing services that you offer from a competitor. Often this is because they didn’t realise that you also sold those services or products.

Constant communication, whether through email marketing or regular calls and discussion helps you stay on their radar and means that you understand what they need at the right time.

Cross-selling and upselling is a vital sales opportunity for your business with your current clients.

2. Don’t wait until existing contracts expire

Many companies make the mistake of not contacting their client well in advance: at least 2 months in advance for a one-year contract, and at least 3 months for a multi-year contract.

This reduces the chance that customers look around and place a follow-up order with your competitor. You must speak to all of your customers regularly, not just with the few that you are closer to. Make sure you reach all your customers in good time.

3. Don’t forget sleeping customers

These are the clients who continue to buy from you on their own or or always tacitly renew the contract, so you can get lulled into a false sense of security about their ensured future business. These customers are a potential gold mine.

But the longer your customer has been a customer, the greater the chance that their needs will change. Unless you remain in close contact with them, they can just walk away.

4. Create a sales moment for each contact moment

Train yourself to see every contact moment with an existing customer as a sales opportunity. Try to think beyond the expressed need and try to find out where a need has arisen. Keep asking. Be very practical, find the discrepancies between the current and the desired situation. And see how you can build that bridge for the customer.

5. Reward loyalty

So many companies offer transfer discounts or entry bonuses, but as soon as you are their customer you will not hear about discounts. This is a great opportunity to retain customers. Please pay attention to existing customers and keep stimulating them with great discounts or offers. This is how you keep them with you in the future.

6. Give a referral bonus

Give existing customers a referral bonus for new customers they attract to you. It is absolutely worthwhile to reward your existing customer as well as your new customer. It also enables someone else to tell your story and that is much more powerful than when you do it yourself.

7. Always under-promise & over-deliver

If you give your existing customers more than they expect from you, they will be impressed and will tell share that experience. Their approval of you can go viral and existing customers become your ambassadors.

8. Listen to your customers

If you want to make updates, first check with your customers what they are missing or what they would like to see. Apart from the extra revenue that these extra features and functionalities provide, you give your customers what they want and that makes them happy. You therefore keep your customers longer.

To learn more about how Make Marketing Magic can help you grow your business, click here.

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