Customer retention is incredibly important to businesses in the hospitality industry. Gaining new customers is much more difficult than retaining customers who have already interacted with your business. With old customers, you do not have to worry about how you will attract them away from their usual brand- that’s already you! You need to make sure that you’re focusing as much energy on keeping customers as you are attracting new ones. It is estimated that 68% of customers will fail to return if they feel unappreciated by a business. Today we will look at five tips on how to wow your customers and make sure they keep returning to you.
In today’s technological age, it is easier than ever for consumers to compare companies, both in terms of value and price. You need to make sure you are engaging with your customers in a way that will keep your business relevant in their lives.
Loyalty programs have long been a part of a business’s retention strategy plan. If it isn’t part of yours, make sure it is now. Rewards and discount programs are the most popular forms of incentive programs. Offer exclusive deals for returning customers. Customers like to see that they are being rewarded for brand loyalty, rather than continuous offers for “new customers”. Figure out what your customers are looking for, once you figure out what your customers value, implement a program that is cost effective for your business.
Use social media platforms to make sure that you are connecting with your customers in real time to offer specials and promotions. Social media networks give you a chance to have interactive experiences with your customers.
Fine tune your customer service
Make sure that your staff’s customer service skills are top notch. A skilled staff will be able to develop effective relationships that are necessary for customer retention and for your business to succeed. Always look for that opportunity to go that extra mile for your customers, it may seem overlooked in the moment, but in the long run they will remember the exemplary customer service. Your staff is the first point of contact for your business. When customers feel as though they have been unappreciated, it can almost always be traced back to subpar customer service. Thoughtful and unexpected gestures also have a powerful impact on customer retention.
Remember your customers
The hospitality industry offers a unique chance to interact with your customers after they have left your business. Whether it be a hotel or restaurant, you can connect with your customers by asking for a little bit of information from them. When they visited last time was it their birthday? You can send an email, or even send a message through social media, to wish them a happy birthday and encourage another visit.
Understand your customer’s needs
Don’t offer a “one size fits all approach”. Make sure that all your customers are treated like individuals. Use social media platforms to connect with your customers and listen to what they are saying- both good and bad. Engage with them on a personal level and have them connect with your brand. By understanding your customers, you are more likely able to anticipate what they expect from you. From there you are able to exceed their expectations and wow them into a repeat customer.
We’ve spoken before about the importance of feedback, when trying to retrain customers it is just as important. Make your customers feel as though their opinions matter and that they have a role in the success of the company. Customers can get annoyed when they feel like their questions are ignored. Always be quick to respond to any inquiries or complaints.
Your business can grow by winning and retaining customers. Retaining customers is hard work, but your business is far more likely to succeed with loyal customers who will repeatedly use your service and become promoters themselves, happy to recommend you to their friends and family. Find out what is appealing to your customers and identify behaviours that drive customer loyalty. A great way to learn how to retain customers is to look at your business through the customer’s eyes. Braymark’s Niagara mystery shoppers offer an objective qualitative and quantitative look at your business, allowing you to determine your customers needs and what they are looking for while using your business.