The customer happiness model – let’s talk retention strategies

‘Getting new customers’ will always be your number one priority. But keeping them with you on your brand journey is just as pressing. It’s what turns customer value into ‘customer lifetime value’.

Email is a prime communication tool for maintaining a regular dialogue with your customers. When sent at the right time, with the right offer, this ‘antique’ channel continues to drive footfall in store and online revenue. Although it’s impossible to get a definitive figure on global ROI generated by email, estimates range from £21 to £44 per £1 spent, or anything from £487 million to £123 billion a year since 2015.

To stay relevant and build loyalty with your customers, focus on the factors that show the value in your brand. Today’s customers are less likely to be loyal, thanks to the world wide web and its unlimited amount of price-based choice. The chief challenge is to give better value than your competitors do, through great products, services and offers. As a business you must do your best to maximise ease of purchase and customer service, and build on the community element of marketing.

Segmentation: who’s at risk of churn?

To keep a customer, first find out who is at risk of leaving. Data can reveal customer patterns over a long period of time and trigger an alert when a pattern changes. It’s at this point that email becomes very useful.

Use it to make an offer a customer can’t refuse, or tell them how your service has improved and how they can make the most of it. Best of all, you can test which element is most likely to get a customer to stay, which helps optimise your retention strategy in the long term.

When we tested four types of ‘offers you can’t refuse’ for a well-known retail brand, we generated £13.1 million in five months and shifted 700,000 customers from churn back to active. More than half these customers continue to engage with email and purchase with the brand.

Tailor-make to customer persona types

Once you’ve identified customers at risk of churn, it’s time to create a retention model based on persona types. You’ll be able to deliver more personalised messaging and brand offerings, which helps customers feel you truly understand them and meet their needs. Identifying types and personas also allows for better optimisation and a/b testing of your marketing strategy approach overall.

If you don’t have enough data to identify personas upfront, you can diversify your messaging and product offering to a/b test – and create personas based on customer behaviour – to various communication and offer types. In the oversaturated consumer market, loyalty trends show that tailored messaging and unique offers generate higher engagement and long-term customer retention.

Triggered journeys

Another great way to keep customers is to build out your behavioural triggered emails. Respond to customers when they interact with you via the website, or through recording engagement on other channels such as social media, SMS and email. Based on what they engage with, follow up quickly with more information. This nudges customers who are distracted by a million other things and gives them relevant and timely details on what they’ve shown interest in. A well-known retail banking client of Profusion’s enjoys a 40% engagement (click rate) through insurance renewals triggered at the right time.

Take an omni-channel approach

Finally, retention can also be achieved when we give a customer a choice. If someone stops opening your emails over a long period of time and refuses to open any of your re-engagement attempts, let them go. You could, as a final attempt, offer them a chance to communicate with you via another channel – but if that doesn’t work, it really is time to say goodbye. By carrying on regardless, your emails will just land in the spam folder – damaging your chances of reaching the inboxes of those customers who do still love you.

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