7 Tips for Growing Customer Loyalty

ThinkstockPhotos-450265531Every thriving business has at least one thing in common: a loyal customer base. Without repeat business from returning customers, it’s next to impossible to operate a successful business. Since attracting new customers costs substantially more than maintaining a relationship with an established customer, that’s powerful incentive to keep existing customers happy.

These tips will help you score high in customer loyalty.

  • Remember customer service is king. Provide a timely, pleasant, satisfying experience when matching candidates with clients and you’re more than halfway there. Of even greater importance is the accessibility you provide and the attention you lavish — yes, that’s right, lavish — on clients whose experience was not satisfying. Your response to concerns and complaints will either make or break the loyalty potential. Every complaint must include these elements of customer recovery: a sincere apology, attentive listening to the concern or complaint, a concentrated effort to fix the issue, a genuine “thank you” for bringing the situation to your attention.Effective customer service boils down to a focused, purposeful attention from every facet of the business to meeting and exceeding the customer’s needs coupled with a genuine attitude of willing service.

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  • Happy temp employees can’t help but contribute to customer loyalty. Their on-the-job performance will shine a positive, contagious light on your staffing business just as their dissatisfaction will have a negative impact. Competence and integrity from management and owners will garner respect from your employees and create a sense of pride at being part of the team.
  • Don’t skimp when it comes to training employees. Few things are most frustrating to a client than an incompetent, poorly-trained temp employee or a mismatched direct-hire. Polite and considerate, unfortunately, will not make up for an employee who is not up to speed on products, policies, or procedures. Equip every employee to do a first-rate job.
  • Speed up your website. It’s not a secret that consumers are all about speed when it comes to interacting with a business’s website. Sluggish website performance is a top reason for seeking out a competitor. But when it comes to person-to-person interactions, customers are looking for “courteous, willing and helpful” not a how-fast-can-we-get-this-done attitude that is difficult to hide. Prove to clients that they are worth your time by not rushing through your interactions with them.
  • Shift into hyper-personal mode. Strive to get to know each client so your interactions can be special and individual. Set the stage for building the trust that will sustain a long-term relationship. The more personal the connection, the greater the potential for word-of-mouth recommendations and future sales.
  • Know your competition. Awareness of the competitor, his staffing reputation, his efforts to retain repeat customers, his strongest feature, his weakest component — you have to be in the know and leverage the information to your advantage. Your best bet is to out-service your competitor.
  • Use brand loyalty to your advantage. The allegiance that knits a particular brand to its most loyal clients is often focused on a shared value or belief—people care in a huge way about what a business stands for. A friend’s millennial-aged children are crazy for Tom’s Shoes. They like the cool styles but what really trips their trigger is Tom’s passionate One for One movement, which gives a pair of shoes to a needy person in the world for each purchase.

The time you invest in maintaining relationships with your satisfied clients will reap benefits for years to come.

MORE: Why aren’t buyers more loyal?

Steve Isenberg

Steve Isenberg
Steve Isenberg is president of ASJ Partners, a marketing agency for the staffing industry. He can be reached at steve.isenberg@asjpartners.com

Steve Isenberg

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