Monday, December 27, 2010

I Hate To Say Goodbye...

I hate to say goodbye to any client. I know you do, too.

We work so hard to find them. Then we put massive effort into nurturing them as prospects and converting them into clients. It’s often a long process in which we’ve invested much in financial and other resources. So when they leave us, it’s not an easy thing to take.


With increasing competition and noise in the marketplace, focusing on capturing our audiences’ attention, attracting them, converting them into clients, then retaining them long-term is more important than ever. That last element--retaining--is the one that seems to get too little attention.

My challenge for you in 2011 is to understand and act on, more than ever, your awareness of the value of an existing client. What measures can we each take to ensure our client bases will increase in the coming year--not just through new client acquisition, but because of aggressive client retention activities as well?

I will propose one possible direction to get your mind going on this subject:

Imagine offering your existing clients better deals than you give prospects to get them to become first-time clients. This is backwards from most companies’ approach. In the scenario I’m proposing, your absolute best deals would be available to your longest-term clients.

Can you take this concept and create a culture among your clients in which it becomes something of a competition to be an ongoing client who gets the premier deals from your company?

Of course, this is just one of many possible directions. Pull your team together and share this message with them. Then dig deep and find the best way(s) for you and your people to keep your clients actively engaging with you this coming year.

Here’s to your client loyalty success!

Bryan Waldon Pope


  1. We are seriously looking at providing an "in-house" credit (no set $$ amount -- probably a % of invoice) for our existing clients based upon prompt (our even early!!) payment of invoices. It helps our bottom line and (hopefully) encourages them to stay with us. We'll see how it works out in 2011.
    David Wilson (Utah Energy Conservation Coalition)

  2. TV providers ought to learn this lesson. I called and asked the guys at Dish to give me a better deal and they refused, so I switched to a different provider. The Dish guys immediately gave me a better offer, but it was too late, I had already switched.

    So it's a great idea to give the very best deals to those who've been with us the longest. If word gets around, then others who've only been with us a short time will understand. Imagine how our long term, loyal clients feel if they learn that newbies are getting better pricing than them.

    A friend of mine stayed loyal to Netflix when they were having a hard time, he still has the same pricing for a better plan than I do. Am I offended, no because he "earned" the discount.

  3. David (Wilson): Early payment credits can be a great incentive for clients to hang around. I know in the many years I worked with my father, the "2% 10, net 30" invoices got immediate attention.

    One question for everyone to consider with their teams: What can you do that your competitors either can't or won't offer? Intensifying the offers and relationship are important with hungry competitors all around us.

    Thanks, David!

  4. David (Gomm):

    I couldn't agree with you more! Satellite/cable TV providers, phone services providers (land line and mobile), internet services providers, and other such companies seem to be happy stealing customers away from each other when they could arguably fair better by simply being that good to their existing clients.

    Remember the long-distance wars? That was the epitome of this narrow-minded approach.

    Thanks for checking in, David! I always love hearing from you.