19 Feb

3 More Ways To Win Back Your Angry Customers

Posted in customer satisfaction, Synergy Suggestions on 19.02.16 by John Meloche

Pile of hands - Successful business team celebrating their success with a high fiveIn yesterday’s blog, we touched upon a touchy subject – disgruntled customers. No business owner likes to see his/her company as one that can anger a member of the buying public. But no business is immune to the possibilities of losing customers every now and again. Retaining them is made possible through following a number of important steps. We outlined a few of them yesterday, but would like to continue where we left off.

Here are three more ways to win back your angry customers:

1. Attempt to arrange a meeting with the disgruntled customer. One of the first steps to winning back an angry customer is to prove that your heart is truly in repairing the relationship. To get to the bottom of things, you’ll want to arrange a meeting to discuss the particulars of the situation gone wrong. On Entrepreneur.com, Dave Mattson advises that you work to discover the factors that lead your customer to the decision to part ways.

“Don’t be defensive,” he insists, “Take responsibility and apologize, if appropriate. Use the meeting as a means for improving but also as a basis for learning more about your client’s needs. The new service provider may not be asking these questions, resulting in there being a potential opportunity down the road to try to win back the client.”

2. Discover what it was that brought the customer to you in the first place. Sometimes, it’s necessary to remind your customer about what he/she loves about your brand. If you can remind the individual about the benefits of working with you, he/she may be more inclined to give you another chance. On AmericanExpress.com, Ivana Taylor suggests that you compare a list of customers who chose your brand over the competition to one of customers you’ve lost.

“Don’t forget to match those lists against the competitive strengths of your organization,” she recommends, “Don’t just take customers for the sake of having more customers. Focus on delivering on your brand promise and nurturing your customer experience. Only make adjustments that will further those two elements and make a positive impact on your bottom line.”

3. Don’t take it personally. All of us are susceptible to having our feelings hurt. But, remember that when a business relationship goes bad, it isn’t always because of your personality. There is a lot of competition for your business out there. Look at things from the customer perspective and realize that being a person’s best friend isn’t always enough to secure his/her business. Mattson suggests that this attitude can help to grow your business in the long run.

“Don’t become too emotional,” he advises, “Client churn is a part of the business experience, and once you accept that, however grudgingly, you will also understand that nothing is forever. Look at loss of a client as a new opportunity to win the business back — and likely at a lower cost than you paid the first time.”

At Synergy Marketing, our experience has shown us that handing out free promo gifts can work wonders to mend fences. To place your order for the promo gift of your choice, call us at 1-877-748-9884 between 9am and 5pm EST or email us at info@gosynergygo.com! You can also sign up for our Insider E-Flyer Program HERE!

tags: , ,

Comments Off on 3 More Ways To Win Back Your Angry Customers

18 Feb

3 Smart Ways To Retain Your Disgruntled Customers

Posted in customer satisfaction, Synergy Suggestions on 18.02.16 by John Meloche

Happy customers at the reception of a hotelReaders of the Synergy Marketing Blog know that we pour a lot of effort into making customers happy. It’s our job to not only make our own customers happy, but to help them make their customers happy as well. Working with business owners all across Canada is a great pleasure. We regularly get to hear about how our high-quality promotional products have helped them to grow their respective brands.

However, we also are made aware that things don’t always go perfectly. Of course, no one is perfect. And, therefore, mistakes are bound to be made. Naturally, some mistakes are bigger than others. And, as a result, there are times when customers are lost. What to do in such a situation? In today’s internet-savvy world, word can spread fast about a bad experience. It’s of vital importance that business owners find ways to remedy situations and save disgruntled customers.

Here are three smart ways to do just that:

1. Pinpoint the exact reason they’re upset. Miscommunication often tops the lists of why there is conflict between two parties. Before you attempt to resolve an issue, be sure to find out exactly what the issue is. The last thing you want to do is further anger a disgruntled customer by offering a solution that doesn’t speak to the exact problem. Do your part to find out the exact reason you made your customer angry.

On AmericanExpress.com, Ivana Taylor insists that you find out exactly why a customer left. “If they say price, then you know there is disconnect between what you offer and the value they perceive,” she informs, “No matter what the reason, ask at least two more probing questions to find out exactly what you could do to improve the offer. You may not get them back, but you will have information that you can use to save a customer who may be thinking of leaving.”

2. Be willing to earn your trust back little by little. Don’t assume that you’ll be able to win back a customer’s trust right away. As with all relationships, the healing process may take some time. Do your part to let your customer know that you haven’t forgotten him/her and make small, but meaningful gestures to let that person know you’re still interested in resolving the issue that caused the split.

On Entrepreneur.com, Dave Mattson warns that you shouldn’t always set your sights on winning customers back immediately. “It may make more sense to incrementally edge your way back by taking on smaller pieces of business,” he says, “With this ‘foot in the door’ tactic, try to score a smaller ‘yes,’ a one-off project. Or you might even provide an entirely different product or service than you have offered before. Then set out to turn a smaller yes into a bigger one.”

3. Own up to your mistake. Sometimes, the best way to resolve a problem is to simply admit that you were the cause of it. Most of the time, excuses just come off as lame and provide further reason for a customer to part ways with a business. Don’t feel that you’re too big to make an apology. In many instances, the simple act of apologizing is all that will be necessary to retain a customer.

Taylor agrees that it’s important that you take responsibility. “If you made a mistake to lose them ask them what they would need to have to make them stay,” she advises, “That means that you fix what went wrong with no requirement for them to remain as a customer. They may still choose to leave, but if they have a great last experience with you, they may refer you to friends and family who may be a better fit as a customer.”

Be sure to check back for tomorrow’s blog as we continue to list ways to win back your angry customers. And please don’t hesitate call Synergy Marketing at 1-877-748-9884 between 9am and 5pm EST or email us at info@gosynergygo.com to ask about our fantastic promo gifts. You can also sign up for our Insider E-Flyer Program HERE!

tags: , ,

Comments Off on 3 Smart Ways To Retain Your Disgruntled Customers

19 Jan

3 Smart Ways To Increase Customer Retention

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Synergy Suggestions on 19.01.16 by John Meloche

customer retention memo post illustration design over a white backgroundIn yesterday’s blog, we touched upon the subject of growing customer bases. This is something that all business owners are interested in doing. But what are the best ways of going about it? Yesterday, we highlighted the fact that impressing your current customers is part of the all-important first step. Making your current customers happy is the best way to get the good word about your company spread to others.

“To increase your customer base, it is necessary to stay in constant contact with potential and existing customers and the more value your business can offer, the more likely they will remain loyal,” writes Steven MacDonald on SuperOffice.com, “A 5% increase in customer retention can result in a 75% increase in customer value. The challenge is how to improve your retention by 5%.” So what can you do to increase customer retention?

Here are three smart ways:

1. Make use of content marketing. Content marketing is all the rage these days. Why do you think that Synergy Marketing posts a new blog to its website each business day of the week? Our website now boasts a wealth of amazingly useful content that has helped for it to be picked up in search engines a lot more than it used to. Another way to use content marketing to your advantage is to send out free newsletters to your current customers.

Keeping in touch with them will help to keep them your customers. “Free is something that everyone can afford, from small businesses to global corporations,” reminds MacDonald, “When you offer a free newsletter, you are informing your potential customers that you are willing to provide free information from the start. If you provide good content, customers will know more about your business.”

2. Make suggestions to customers based on their proven interests. Smart business owners get to know their customers. They understand their likes and dislikes and cater to their buying habits, as a result. It’s best to try to predict what your customers are looking for, based on what they have purchased in the past. They will appreciate your attention to detail. Simply make suggestions considering what you know about them and see if it doesn’t boost sales.

In their book, The Startup Owner’s Manual: The Step-By-Step Guide for Building a Great Company, Steve Black and Bob Dorf suggest that you utilize your website to make such suggestions. In an excerpt on Entrepreneur.com, the pair recommend that “on every ‘thank you’ or confirmation page, (you) suggest multiple items the customer may also find interesting, and ideally provide an incentive for purchasing.”

3. Maintain an excellent customer service regimen. It’s hard to go wrong when your customer service is excellent. It not only helps you to retain customers, but it encourages more customers to give your brand a try. People often want to enjoy their experiences with companies more than they do the actual products they purchase. When customers are made happy, as we pointed out yesterday, they tend to tell others about their experiences.

It’s important to make every experience count. “A customer who contacts customer support about their first order is just as important as a customer who contacts customer service about their tenth order,” MacDonald reminds us, “Treat each customer with respect and take appropriate action. A happy customer is likely to tell at least three friends about a positive experience and great customer service leads to increased sales.”

tags: , , , ,

Comments Off on 3 Smart Ways To Increase Customer Retention

18 Jan

3 Easy Ways To Expand Your Customer Base

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Synergy Suggestions on 18.01.16 by John Meloche

Colorful arrows hitting the center of a target. Concept for illustration of business consulting and new customer acquisition strategyIf it’s one thing that all business owners have in common, it’s that they’re all interested in growing the sizes of their customer bases. This is likely most true for small business owners. Especially those who have aspirations of expanding and owning more locations, growing customer bases is imperative. But what are the best ways to go about securing more customers? As always, we have a few ideas!

Here are three easy ways to expand your customer base:

1. Focus on impressing your current customers. This is a very important step in increasing the number of customers you have. You can never forget the people who already support your business. And that’s because the best ways to advertise your brand is to have your happy customers do it for you! Be sure to focus on making your current customers happy and they will be bound to spread the good word about your brand.

In The Startup Owner’s Manual: The Step-By-Step Guide for Building a Great Company, Steve Black and Bob Dorf advise business owners to get their current customers to spend more if they want their customer bases to grow. “To start, make sure your customers are satisfied with the product, performance and price,” write the duo, courtesy of an excerpt on Entrepreneur.com, “Then you try to sell them more product, upgrade their service or extend their contracts.”

Some of the basic approaches that they recommend include cross-selling programs, up-selling programs, next-selling programs and something they call “unbundling”. “If a product is complex or multi-featured, split it into several products, each sold separately, which sometimes grows revenue,” explain Black and Dorf, “This works well in many tech, software, and industrial product areas.”

2. Ask for opinions on your website. As we’ve established, a focus on your current customers is important. The same can be said about your current website visitors. Gauging how people currently feel about your business is a key step in helping it to grow. Utilize your website by implementing a survey that encourages visitors to discuss their opinions about your brand. It will serve to provide you with some very useful feedback.

This strategy is championed by Steven MacDonald on SuperOffice.com. “Before a web visitor leaves your website, request that they complete a short survey related to your business,” he recommends, “People are happy to express themselves and often enjoy telling you about their online and offline experiences. You can use a survey to conduct industry research, customer experience or measure customer satisfaction.”

3. Ask happy customers for referrals. As mentioned earlier, happy customers make for the best advertisements. Simply ask the customers who have expressed their pleasure with your brand to recommend it to others. “Customer referrals are the most honest source of new business,” says MacDonald, “There are lots of different viral marketing tools and tactics that can help you get customers to refer other customers to your company.”

At Synergy Marketing, we have a long history of helping Canadian business owners to secure referrals. Our top-of-the-line promotional products are regularly heralded as excellent sources of encouragement in that regard. When customers receive our free gifts, they are often motivated to let their friends and family members know about the companies that gave them the gifts. Order yours today!

Call us at 1-877-748-9884!

tags: , , , , ,

Comments Off on 3 Easy Ways To Expand Your Customer Base

27 Nov

3 More Reasons Customers Will Buy From You

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 27.11.15 by John Meloche

Close up woman hand with many shopping bags and credit cardIn yesterday’s blog, we analyzed reasons why customers support your company. Surely, there are reasons greater than the fact that you may sell what it is they are looking for. It goes deeper than that. People support companies that make them feel better about life. It may sound melodramatic, but it’s true. Do your products and services solve problems that occur in the everyday lives of your customers? More importantly, do you provide enjoyable experiences to those who visit your store?

With the holiday shopping season in full swing, it’s arguably (although it would be hard to argue) the most important time of the year to encourage customers to visit your store. If you’re looking for ways to increase foot traffic – not just over the next month, but well into the new year – you’ll want to focus on the real reasons why customers buy from you. In today’s blog, we round out the list we started yesterday.

Here are three more:

1. You have great product selection. Customers have options. There are generally various different types of the products that you sell. And your competition is bound to have them. But, what if you have them, too? What if your company is the one known for having a lot of different options for its customers? If so, it’s bound to have a lot of different customers. How well is your store stocked with inventory?

On BusinessKnowHow.com, Kelley Robertson writes that product selection and availability is a big reason customers choose to support certain brands. “Do you have a good supply chain management or order fulfillment process in place?” she asks, noting that she has placed orders with companies who don’t even respond weeks later. Not having the merchandise you claim to sell is not going to impress your customers.

2. You are trustworthy. Are you easily accessible to your customers? Are they able to quickly get you on the phone or get speedy responses to emails? Do you follow through on your commitments? Do your deliveries make it by the time they are promised? Answering these questions in the affirmative will help to clarify whether you are trustworthy or not. And they will help to either encourage or dissuade customers from supporting your company.

On MarketingProfs.com, Verónica Maria Jarski writes that your trustworthiness and reputation are big parts of what makes customers want to do business with you. “Protect your good name, and do everything in your power to ensure that your customers, prospects, friends, employees, and colleagues view you as a person of value,” she insists, “Keep in mind that your credibility, plausibility, and truthfulness will also win you far more customers than exaggerated claims and over-the-top promises.”

3. Store cleanliness and layout. How inviting is the physical location of your store? People should enjoy its atmosphere and like the very idea of entering your doors. Stores that aren’t well-kept are bound to lose customers. Remember that the buying experience is just that – an experience. Having a store that is fun to visit provides incentives to people who are deciding where to shop.

“Is your store clean, tidy and visually appealing?” asks Robertson, “I recently visited a new store in the city and, even though they had been open for less than a week, many of the shelves were in complete disarray and products were scattered haphazardly. Make it easy for people to find product, prices, and to manoeuvre around the store.”

tags: , ,

Comments Off on 3 More Reasons Customers Will Buy From You

22 Apr

3 Ways To Provide Incomparable Customer Service

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 22.04.15 by John Meloche

customer satisfactionOver the past couple of days, the Synergy Marketing Blog has been highlighting some effective ways to prioritize your customers so that they know how much they mean to your business. By analyzing tips provided by Raphael Caixeta on SixRevisions.com, our blogs have underlined some of the most important ways to run a successful business. To reiterate, it’s not all about offering great products and services.

It’s about creating unforgettable customer experiences! At Synergy Marketing, we work hard to practice what we preach. We’re steadfastly confident in the quality and effectiveness of our fantastic promotional products. But it’s the friendly and knowledgeable customer service that we provide that helps us to outshine our competitors. There are a number of ways that we have been successful in doing this.

Here are three ways to provide incomparable customer service:

1. Remember that patience is a virtue. Sure, it may sound like a cliché. But that doesn’t make it an untrue statement in the business world. It’s easy to get impatient considering how much work you likely have on your plate each day. But consider how busy your customers may be. They too, have time that deserves to be valued. And they often want things done quickly. However, when they are making demands that may agitate you, it’s very important to not show your agitation.

Keeping a cool head is key. “I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve exhausted my patience on my clients,” admits Caixeta , “But I’ve never actually showed them my agitation. If you feel like the client is overstepping their boundaries, let them know in a cordial and professional manner. You just don’t want to start yelling and cursing at the people you make a living off of. Maintain professionalism at all times.”

2. Remember that you’re never too old to learn. “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks” is an idiom that most of us know pretty well. The thing is that it is complete nonsense! To reiterate, you’re never too old to learn. And to be specific, you’re never too knowledgeable to learn new things about your industry. True experts in their fields keep abreast of all of the new developments going on in their marketplace. Your customers need to trust that you are continually on top of things.

“You are a paid expert,” Caixeta reminds you, “Someone is giving you their hard-earned money to do something they believe you have a high level of mastery of. You need to keep yourself up-to-date with the profession and always be ready to answer questions your client needs to know. If you exhibit signs that you don’t know your craft inside out, you risk the chance of ruining your professional reputation.”

3. Remember that you are a customer too. Perhaps, the easiest ways to provide incomparable customer service is to recall your own experiences as a customer. Ask yourself how you would like a situation handled if the roles were reversed. Would your brand of customer service suffice if you were the customer being serviced? Caixeta insists, that when dealing with your customers, you “put yourself in their shoes”.

“If you were in their shoes and were being treated the way you’re treating them, would you enjoy that experience?” he asks, “If so, you’re doing a good job. If not, you probably want to get a little better. It’s important to constantly evaluate the way you communicate with others. Our profession is heavily reliant on communication skills.” At Synergy Marketing, we’d love for you to experience our brand of incomparable customer service. Call us at 1-877-748-9884 today!

tags: , , , ,

Comments Off on 3 Ways To Provide Incomparable Customer Service

21 Apr

3 Ways To Show Customers You Care About Their Business

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 21.04.15 by John Meloche

Business man with smiley facesGenerally, most companies brag about their customer service. They insist that their brand of service sets them apart from their competition. But how many of them mean it? We’ve all had experiences with businesses that practice customer service in a less than savoury way. How many times have you encountered a customer service rep that was rude, standoffish or disinterested? Too many to count, right?

Truly setting your company apart from others in the customer service department requires some attention to detail. As we pointed out in yesterday’s blog, it often means that you’ll have to go over and above the call of duty for your customers. It’s important to let them know that you truly care about their business. On SixRevisions.com, Raphael Caixeta offers up some advice on how you can pull this off.

Here are three ways to show customers you care about their business:

1. Listen up! You know all about your products and services. As the owner of your business, it is likely that few people, if any, can describe their benefits as well as you can. Your knowledge base about your brand, however, doesn’t mean that you automatically know how to address the needs of each and every one of your clients. It is incredibly important to listen attentively to their needs and concerns.

That way, you’ll be able to satisfy each of their unique requirements the first time around. “It’s important to listen to what your clients are communicating to you,” insists Caixeta, “Understand what they are saying and ask for clarifications on things that might be ambiguous. Clients might be unfamiliar with certain terminologies in our profession, and what you think they mean might be different to what they actually mean.”

2. Stick to your word. Trust is everything. It doesn’t matter what type of relationship we’re talking about. If you can’t be trusted, the relationship can’t last. Be sure to honour your word each and every time you give it. One surefire way to lose a customer is to make a promise that you can’t keep. It is highly unlikely that you’ll be able to regain trust once it has been lost. Make being dependable a huge highlight of working with your business.

“If you say you’re going to do something, make sure you do it,” advises Caixeta, “It’s part of being a professional. If you need more time on something, you should let them know as soon as possible, not after you’ve already missed the deadline. Honouring your commitments is very important.” Remember that good news spreads. A trustworthy business is often one that gets highly recommended.

3. Own up to it. Okay, so maybe you were unable to complete a project on time when you promised that you would. Perhaps an item didn’t get delivered to the right address. Maybe poor listening lead to you being unable to stick to your word. Uh oh! Not adhering to the first two tips listed in today’s blog is bound to land you in some hot water, right? Well, if you’re able to fess up and fix the mistakes you’ve admitted to making, you may still have a chance to prove to your customers that you care about their business.

“If you did something that didn’t end up working, you should repair it,” writes Caixeta, “A quick way to lose a client forever is not admitting that you are at fault and not fixing your own mistakes. You should always strive for a high-quality output; it shows that you have a high level of standards in your craftsmanship.” Be sure to check back for tomorrow’s blog as we complete our look at this very important topic.

And, as always, Synergy Marketing can be reached at 1-877-748-9884 to discuss providing your company with the best promo products in the business!

tags: , , , ,

Comments Off on 3 Ways To Show Customers You Care About Their Business

06 Feb

Small Businesses Should Focus On Customer Retention

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 06.02.15 by John Meloche

Excited group of business people-isolatedThe fallout from last weekend’s widely-watched Super Bowl continues. And while people may still be talking, around the water coolers, about the various commercials that were aired during the broadcast, a question lingers in the air. Did the advertisements work? And we don’t just mean that they worked in the way that it got people talking about them. Have the advertisements earned their advertisers more money?

As Dave Lavinksy of Forbes.com puts it, “while the American public may rave about a funny Budweiser commercial…the Board of Directors isn’t even going to giggle until they see a healthy return on investment.” He goes on to note that small business owners need to take on a very different approach to growing their companies. While big-named brands spend millions of dollars on trying to get new customers, Lavinsky insists that small business owners do the opposite.

Focus on your current customers, he says. “The fact is that most businesses spend way too much money advertising to get new customers,” he writes, “And once they get them, they don’t fully leverage them. Rather, by advertising to your customers, they will buy from you more often, buy higher priced items, tell their friends about you and so on. The fact is that your customers already have a track record of buying from you. They know you and typically trust you.”

So what are the best ways to advertise to your current customers? Lavinsky again suggests that thinking the opposite of a large corporation is the key. In other words, don’t focus on television commercials, radio spots or newspaper ads. Instead, it’s important to go the route of direct mail, newsletters, email and social media. The bottom line, he asserts, is that it’s all about customer retention over customer attraction for the small business owner.

“Clever business owners figure out how to sell to their existing customer base by ensuring they have high value adjacent products or services,” says Lavinsky. For example, do you sell products that your business can also service if they are in need of repair? “Almost all car dealerships have a service centre that is typically more lucrative that the sale of the car,” he states. Perhaps, you can also offer seminars at your place of business that teach the value of your products and services.

As well, it’s important to focus on the referral process. One of the best ways to attain new customers is to encourage your current ones to tell others about you. It has often been said that there is no better way to advertise your brand than to have its loyal customers spread the news by word-of-mouth. It’s arguably the best possible way to promote your business. It works for many professionals, as Lavinsky points out.

“Did you know that some businesses do not advertise at all?” he asks, “Everyone has heard of doctors or lawyers whose services are so desirable you have to wait months for an appointment. Successful family doctors stop accepting new patients. How do they do this? By treating each customer exceptionally well and providing the very best products and services. Treat your customers like gold and not only will they remain your customer, they will become your personal marketers.”

Earlier, we mentioned the need for small business owners to make use of social media. This can’t be reiterated enough. In today’s world, there’s likely no better way for word-of-mouth promotion to spread. “Social networks such as Facebook and Twitter have given word of mouth immense power,” Lavinsky writes. So don’t worry about not being able to afford a Super Bowl commercial. Focus your efforts on the customer base you have in order to help it grow!

tags: , , , , ,

Comments Off on Small Businesses Should Focus On Customer Retention