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8 Ways Customer Bonding Programs Create Customers For Life

Posted by Tom Smith on Fri, Jan, 31, 2014 @ 10:01 AM

customer bonding programs to create customers for life

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have developed and implemented numerous customer, and prospect, bonding programs for clients, channel partners and employers over the course of my career.

The objective of the programs is to enhance the company's relationship with its customer or prospects since any successful business' most valuable asset is its current customers.

There are several elements of a customer bonding program.  The most critical element is an accurate and well-maintained customer relationship management (CRM) database.  This database is necessary for tracking communications and all other elements of the relationship.

Once your CRM is up and running, you can begin providing:

  • Information of value (content)
  • Customer satisfaction measurement and improvement programs
  • Customers for life programs
  • Personalized communications that lets the customer know you're listening to them and responding with what's most important

Specific elements of a program might include:

  • A welcome kit
  • Invitation to events of interest
  • Cause-related marketing
  • Newsletters
  • White papers
  • Videos
  • Presentations
  • Customer satisfaction surveys
  • Thank you and anniversary gifts

The benefits of such a program are numerous.  Here are eight:

  1. Move customers up the customer hierarchy from prospects, to triers, to users, to loyal customers to "raving fans"
  2. Increase long-term customer value
  3. Increase "share-of-wallet"
  4. Go beyond "share-of-mind" to "share-of-life"
  5. Reduce churn
  6. Engender loyalty
  7. Promote a dialog
  8. Reduce marketing expenses as a result of the referrals you are getting from satisfied customers and raving fans

How can your company benefit from a customer bonding program?

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Tags: customers for life, dialog, improve loyalty and retention, customer bonding programs

5 Tools to Use to Get More Customers For Life

Posted by Tom Smith on Thu, Jan, 30, 2014 @ 10:01 AM

customers for life

 

 

 

 

 

Customers For Life is a very powerful philosophy. It puts customers at the forefront of your company and your strategic plans.

It makes a lot of sense to do so since you won't have any revenue without any customers.

A Customers For Life philosophy does not mean you will end up serving all of your customers for their entire life or the life of your business.

Some of your customers' needs will change beyond what you offer and you will outgrow some of your customers. However, a Customers For Life philosophy ensures that you look out for your customers and help them find the right solution for their needs when you no longer offer the best solution.

Just because you're no longer doing business with someone doesn't mean you can't be friends. A Customers For Life philosophy will ensure you're getting referrals from former customers long after the business relationship has ended.

People like to do business with those they know, like and trust. They also like to see their friends be successful and are often willing to go out of their way to help their friends.

Here are five things I recommend pursuing to get more customers for life:

  1. Use Net Promoter Score surveys. This quick and easy three question survey lets you know several things: how you're doing in your customers' eyes; what areas you can improve upon; and, how engaged your customers are in your brand. It lets your customers know you're concerned about their happiness and interested in referrals. It's also the way to initiate a dialog with those customers with whom you've yet to speak with.

  2. Customer Bonding Program. A customer bonding program helps the customer get the most value out of your product or service. By following up with customers after their purchase, you know if they have any issues which you need to address for them as well as for future buyers of your product or service. You learn what they like and don't like, as well as what they need, or don't need, next.

  3. Empower employees. By educating your employees about the Customers For Life philosophy, you are empowering and encouraging your employees to provide outstanding customer experiences that will help you earn customers for life. These outstanding customer experiences are also likely to be shared with family, friends and colleagues in person and via social media. Employees that provide the most outstanding customer experiences are likely the future leaders of your, or someone else's, company.

  4. Trust. Dr. Ralph E. James wrote The Integrity Chain for the construction industry in 2002. I had the pleasure of working with Ralph and publishing the second edition of the book. While the book is written for the construction industry, its principles apply to ANY industry. Have integrity to earn trust. Earn trust to get repeat business. Get repeat business to be profitable. With the growth of the internet and social media, integrity and trust are far more important today than in 2002. In order to have Customers For Life, you must earn, and keep, their trust. Doing so will give you a cushion on those occasions when you do fail to live up to a customer's expectation.

  5. Model and reward a Customers For Life philosophy. From the CEO down, everyone in the company should be able to explain what the philosophy is, why it's important and their role in its execution. Those that exemplify a Customers For Life philosophy will help the company, and themselves, be much more successful. It's useful for employees to think of their colleagues as customers as well. By treating your colleagues as customers, your business will run more smoothly.

Do you have examples of how a Customers For Life philosophy has improved your relationship with customers?

Or, have you experienced how it has improved a company's relationship with you? 

 

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Tags: customers for life, trust, dialog, empower employees, improve loyalty and retention, connecting emotionally with customers, integrity chain, customer bonding programs

Include Cost to Serve in Your Price to Accelerate Profitability

Posted by Tom Smith on Tue, Jan, 07, 2014 @ 06:01 AM

service costs hurt profitability

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great presentation by Gary Cokins, founder of Analytics Based Performance Management.

Gary suggests that the Pareto principle (the 80:20 rule) applies to cost to serve the same as it applies to revenue and profitability and that by eliminating the 20% of customers that account for 80% of customer service expense you can dramatically increase your firm's profitability.

The key is to know the lifetime value of your customer and the cost to serve them.

Following are 11 ways to increase profitability:

  1. Be aware of the service cost for each customer and reduce it. What can you do to making buying from you more simple? This will save the customer time and save you money. Customers crave simplicity.
     
  2. Establish a surcharge for, or reprice, expensive cost-to-serve activities. If it costs more to give the customer what they want, you need to educate the customer of this and charge them for the extra expense you are incurring.
     
  3. Reduce services. Customers today are very adept at searching your website, and others, for answers to their questions. Provide the information they're looking for with a content-based marketing effort. Answer any question you've ever received from a customer in a blog post. It will help your prospects and customers as well as your search engine optimization efforts.
     
  4. Introduce new product and service lines based on your customers' needs and wants. Empower your employees to help identify what your customers' needs and wants are.
     
  5. Raise prices. The 2012 American Express Global Customer Service Barometer found that customers would spend 13% more with companies that provide great service.
     
  6. Abandon unprofitable or less lucrative products, services or customers. Don't do this before you've tried charging more.
     
  7. Improve processes to drive up service line or product profitability. Start by having an accurate customer relationship management database that every customer-facing employee has access to.
     
  8. Offer the customer profit-positive service level options at varying prices. Zappos is known for providing a consistently outstanding customer experience and next day delivery -- not everyday low prices.
     
  9. Increase activities that a customer shows a preference for. Fine dining establishments have been charging premium prices for "chef's tables" for years.
     
  10. Up-sell and cross-sell the customer's purchase mix toward richer, higher-margin products and service lines. Leverage data to know what to offer your customer next to fulfill their needs.
     
  11. Discount to gain more volume, or greater lifetime value, with low "cost-to-serve" customers. I receive monthly shipments of dog food and cereal at a 10% discount. I save time and money and the companies selling me their products now have an annuity stream.
How are you using your knowledge of the lifetime value of the customer and the cost of providing service to increase profitability?
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Tags: insights from analytics accelerate sales, pricing as a strategic market advantage, consumer insights, customer relationship management, customer bonding programs, lifetime customer value

10 Ways to Get the Most Out of Your CRM to Accelerate Sales

Posted by Tom Smith on Wed, Dec, 18, 2013 @ 06:12 AM

A good CRM helps accelerate sales

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks to Jennifer Lornoff Shiff for quoting me in her article for the eCRM Guide:

Ten Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your CRM System
By Jennifer Schiff

Last month, eCRM Guide asked leading customer relationship management (CRM) software vendors NetSuite, Salesforce.com and SugarCRM for 10 of their top CRM tips.

This month, we asked CRM users, business owners and executives what advice they had for colleagues looking to improve CRM adoption and get a positive return on their CRM investment. We received literally hundreds of tips, all of them good, many of them similar, which we narrowed down to the following 10.

1. The CEO and top executives should set the example. Many business owners complain they can't get their salespeople to use their CRM system — when they themselves don't use the software. So if you want to improve CRM adoption, "the CEO and the rest of the C-level executives have to use it and understand it," said Tom Smith, marketing consultant at Insights From Analytics.

2. Teach your sales team well. "Train, train, train!" admonished Daniel K. O'Leary, vice president for global solutions at LincWare. "If people don't feel comfortable using a CRM system, they will find another way to do it, like paper or a spreadsheet. So make sure they understand how to use the CRM system, and why it's important."

3. Introduce changes slowly. "With CRM software, a good starting point is to have the team start entering their sales contacts. Once they have fully incorporated this process, start tracking sales with the new system. Next, have them use the software to generate reports. Continue adding new elements on a regular basis until they are using every function of the new solution in their daily routine," suggested James Wong, CEO of Avidian Technologies.

4. Be consistent with data. To get the most out of your CRM system, you need to have "agreed upon protocols for how names and addresses will be handled for consistency of data entry," said Smith.

5. Your CRM system is only as good as the data it houses. "Given that email today is the most cost-efficient channel for communicating with one's customers, it's critical for companies to validate and correct email addresses prior to entering them into one's marketing/CRM database and perform regular hygiene processes to ensure these email addresses are kept as up-to-date as possible," said Bill Kaplan, CEO of FreshAddress.

6. Use your CRM system to track marketing results. "Simply pass your web form lead information directly into your CRM system," advised Susan Thayer, director of marketing at Firespring, which uses Salesforce.com. "Set up a campaign for each web form or lead source so you can get real-time counts of how many leads your campaigns are getting and how many are turning into sales. You can also set up your CRM system to send an auto-response to your leads that complete web forms and ongoing 'drip' or auto-generated emails if leads meet pre-specified criteria."

7. Use pre-made add-ons and applications before investing thousands of dollars in custom solutions. "A great example of this is Salesforce.com's AppExchange, which offers many free and paid apps that can immensely streamline your business processes," said Terra Williams, CRM director/marketing for Cibaria International. "For example, our company has made use of Pervasive's DataSynch module, effectively saving us thousands of dollars a month while allowing us to synch our QuickBooks data to Salesforce and bridge our sales pipeline in the process."

8. Use Google Alerts to email your CRM system when it detects your customer as a keyword. "Google allows you to set up keywords that will be emailed to you or your CRM system when triggered," allowing you to better keep track of what your customers are saying and doing, noted T.J. Bloom, operations manager at MDL Technology.

9. Make sure that you have an easy way to migrate your data before choosing a CRM system. "If you ever want to switch CRM systems, it can be very painful if the data can't be downloaded [or migrated] in an easily accessible format/way," said Bettina Hein, founder and CEO of Pixability. "We just learned how hard switching is because we're migrating from Highrise to Salesforce.com."

10. Reward those who influence CRM success, even if it's not their job. "If an employee gives great feedback or streamlines a process, be sure to have a reward or incentive in place," suggested Williams.

What tips do you have to add?

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Tags: empower employees, connecting emotionally with customers, customer satisfaction measurement and improvement, customer bonding programs

Cultivating Happy Customers For Life

Posted by Tom Smith on Thu, Nov, 21, 2013 @ 06:11 AM

happy customers for life

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great webinar by Mark Kilens (@markkilens) leader of HubSpot Academy.

It's everyone's job to delight customers.

Loyal customers are worth at least 10 times more their first purchase. In the case of Chipotle, I'm worth 10,000 times.

Forty-eight percent of customers who had a negative experience will tell 10, or more people about it.

Customer perception of your company is based on EVERY interaction with your company.

EVERY email.

EVERY phone call.

EVERY ad.

EVERY social media exposure.

Everything must be consistent. Consistency builds trust. Trust builds loyalty.

You can't provide awesome service if you don't know who your customers are, what they want or what they value.

Every customer is different. Don't assume you know what they want.

Most customers are not loyal to businesses, they're loyal to what businesses stand for. Chipotle stands for food with integrity. 

Consumers value quality, price, value and results.

A loyal customer will forego a cheaper product or service to do business with you because they have developed an emotional connection with your brand.

There are three pillars of customer delight:

  1. Product -- must be as good or better than anything else currently available.
  2. Communication -- personal, open, honest, transparent and consistent at all times.
  3. Education -- customers want to know about your products, your service, your people, your mission and your values. Let them "see behind the curtain" and involve them in improving your products, services and customer experience.
Here are 8 gudelines that will help you delight your customers and turn them into "raving fans:"
  1. Delight employees -- customers will never love a company until the employees love it first, loyal employees = loyal customers.
  2. Educate employees -- make sure employees know that the customer is always the top priority and to under promise and over deliver.
  3. Empower employees -- let them be themselves, they are the face of your organization.
  4. Listen to your customer -- let them tell you what they're trying to accomplish and then repeat it back to them to ensure you're on the same page.
  5. Ask follow-up questions -- who, what then, why, where and how to fully understand their needs, wants and goals.
  6. Help customers -- educate, businesses that are the best educators will be the most successful; provide solutions.
  7. Follow-up with customers -- ensure all of their problems have been resolved, be easy to do business with, do what you say you'll do when you say you'll do it. Follow-up a couple of days after the interaction to ensure the customer doesn't have any additional questions -- they'll be amazed.
  8. Take action -- measure and track everything and encourage your customers to do the same, use Net Promoter Score to determine the success of your efforts.
Customers do business with those they know, like and trust.
By providing a consistently outstanding customer experience, you will build trust, satisfaction and raving fans.
It's not what you say, but how you make your customers feel that creates a lasting relationship.
People delight people.
You, and your employees, will determine whether or not you have happy customers.
Please let me know if I can assist you in any way.
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Tags: customers for life, loyal customers, trust, customer satisfaction, earn your customers trust, empower employees, connecting emotionally with customers, customer bonding programs, do what you say you'll do when you say you'

12-Step Customer Service Manifesto

Posted by Tom Smith on Mon, Oct, 28, 2013 @ 06:10 AM

customer service manifesto

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great post from Barry Moltz in a recent edition of SmartBrief Jobs on "How to Make Customer Service Easy for Your Employees."

Offering great customer service is hard.

The definition of what it is exactly changes from customer to customer and from situation to situation. This makes it especially difficult for employees who try to apply their company training to a particular situation.

In a connected world, customer service has become the new marketing. A dissatisfied customer used to be able to tell seven people. With social media, they now can tell 7 million people!

In focusing on customer service, leaders need to answer these questions first.

  1. What does the customer mean to their company mission?
  2. What is their personal attitude toward customers?
  3. What do their employees and customers think they do right and wrong?
  4. How do they personally stay in touch with customers?
  5. What characteristics do they look for in front-line sales and service people?
  6. Have they empowered their employees?
  7. How much process is in place to identify issues and solutions immediately?

Next, to provide great customer service consistently, every leader needs to achieve two things within their organizations.

  1. Establish a customer service manifesto on what customers can expect each time they do business with their company.
  2. Train their employees on this manifesto and how to respond to customers in 99% of the situations, since the biggest complaint people have is being forced to explain their problem over and over again to different employees inside the company.

Here is a sample of what needs to be in that manifesto.

  1. We will deliver on what we promised.
  2. We will listen attentively to all your concerns.
  3. We will be easy to reach especially when things go wrong.
  4. We will resolve your issues in a reasonable time frame.
  5. We will admit when we made a mistake.
  6. We will empower our employees to solve your issue at the point it occurs.
  7. We will not charge separate nuisance fees or surcharges.
  8. We will treat you with respect and dignity at all times.
  9. When we decide to change something, we will tell you in advance.
  10. We will never sell any information about you without your permission.
  11. We will offer you several convenient ways to provide us feedback.
  12. In every situation, we will ask you what it would take to make you feel satisfied.

Studies show that when employees know what is expected of them, are trained well and have control over their work, they are more satisfied in their jobs. Happy employees always treat their customers better. Happy customers always come back and refer their colleagues.

How are you training and empowering your employees to provide better customer service?

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Tags: empower employees, connecting emotionally with customers, customer satisfaction measurement and improvement, customer bonding programs

11 Rules for Customer Retention

Posted by Tom Smith on Fri, Aug, 16, 2013 @ 06:08 AM

11 rules for customer retention

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks to The Wise Marketer for the list.  

I've added my thoughts to each based on my experience:

  1. Don't just collect data -- use it.  Let your customers know that you hear what they're saying and here's what you're going to do based on their feedback.
  2. Treat customers the way you'd like to be treated.  I suggest treating your employees the same, since that's how they will treat your customers.  Your employees will not care about your customers if you don't care about your employees.
  3. Be different -- if you dare.  What are your vision, mission and values? How does that make you different and better than your competition?  Does your consumer confirm what you think?
  4. CRM doesn't belong only to the CRM team.  Everyone needs to be involved and empowered to know, use and update data in the CRM.  Otherwise, the data will not be current.
  5. Timing goes a long way.  Know the key dates in your customers' lives -- their birthday, their anniversary, the day they need to replace a part on the product they bought from you.
  6. Be interested and get to know your customers.  The goal is to have a dialogue that can lead to a long-term and mutually beneficial relationship.
  7. Make the most of your advocates.  Do you know who your raving fans are?  Have you asked them for referrals?  Testimonials?
  8. Try to create "surprise and delight."  If you do, they'll tell their friends via social media which is invaluable to your marketing.
  9. Measure, measure, measure.  Identify key metrics based on your firm's goals and objectives.
  10. Stay relevant and show value quickly.  Reward people for signing up for your newsletter.  Give them a gift for doing business with you.  When Amazon just sold books, they always sent a bookmark with the order.
  11. Keep your employees involved.  Happy employees = happy customers.

What are your essentials for customer retention?

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Tags: customers for life, customer satisfaction, customer retention, genuine interest, empowered employees, customer bonding programs

12 Ways to Adopt a "Customers For Life" Philosophy

Posted by Tom Smith on Fri, Jul, 26, 2013 @ 06:07 AM

Customers For Life resized 600

 

Regardless of what kind of business you are in, you're in the service business.

We're all experts in customer service because we're all customers.  We buy cars, haircuts, groceries, dinners and hire plumbers. 

We know the difference between companies that treat us right and companies that don't. We tend to do business with those we know, like and trust.

We need to apply our learning to our own businesses.

Here are 12 suggestions for getting customers for life, something we should all aspire to since it's much easier to keep a customer than to get a new one.

  1. Treat customers as if they were friends.  Customers are just like anyone else.  They appreciate a friendly voice on the phone, a warm handshake, someone who calls them by name and makes them feel important.
  2. Start from the inside.  Quality customer service depends on your employees.  Your employees will not respect your customers if you do not respect your employees.  Great quote from Robert Bosch, "I don't pay good wages because I make a lot of money.  I make a lot of money because I pay good wages."
  3. Keep your game face on.  If you want your employees to be motivated, you have to start by acting like your company provides the world's greatest customer service.  Unless you believe it, it's not going to happen.
  4. Measure and reward performance.  Measurement motivates people.  Establish clear measurements and tie them to rewards.  You cannot manage if you are not measuring.
  5. Learn to listen.  Customers buy good feelings and solutions to their problems.  Above all, they want to know the person dealing with them is listening.  The better you know the customer, the better you can respond to their needs.
  6. Let the customer talk.  Don't assume you know what the customer wants.  Resist the temptation to jump in with an answer.  Concentrate on what the customer is really saying.  The tone of voice and body language will tell you a lot about how the person feels.
  7. Take the word "no" out of your vocabulary.  Customers hate to hear the work "no."  While you can't give customers everything they want, you can talk in terms of what you can do rather than what you cannot do.
  8. Give customers more than they expect.  Think of what you can give the customer that they cannot get anywhere else.  If you "Wow" you're customer, they're more likely to share their experience with others.
  9. Mind the little things.  People notice the small personal touches because most companies don't provide them.  Commit to doing the little things that make the big things happen.
  10. Send thank you notes after you finish a job, complete a project or deliver a product.  Meet a customer for lunch or coffee.  Remember birthdays, anniversaries and other special events.
  11. Encourage feedback -- good or bad.  The unhappy customer who complains can be your best friend.  Most people, if dissatisfied, will simply choose another company next time.  Those who tell you they are unhappy are giving you a chance to redeem yourself.  In the end, they may remember you more for the way you handled their complaint than for the mistake you made.
  12. Make a commitment to getting customers for life.  Long-term customers aren't easy to come by.  They are built through a sustained effort. They spend more, they tell more people about you, they become an annuity for your business.

What secrets do you have for getting, and keeping, customers for life?

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Tags: customers for life, earn your customers trust, employee empowerment, customer bonding programs

8 Reasons to Create a Customer Bonding Program

Posted by Tom Smith on Wed, Jul, 24, 2013 @ 06:07 AM

Customer bonding programs

 

I have developed and implemented numerous customer, and prospect, bonding programs for clients, channel partners and employers over the course of my career.

The objective of the programs is to enhance the company's relationship with its customer or prospects, after the saleis made, since any successful business' most valuable asset is its current customers.

This reduces churn and increases revenue.

I am also an advocate of having a "customers for life" philosophy. Customers are sufficiently difficult to get that you should aspire to keeping them for life. They may not always buy from you; however, by maintaining a good relationship, they'll always be a good source of referrals, references and testimonials.

There are several elements of a customer bonding program.  The most critical element is an accurate and well-maintained customer relationship management (CRM) database.  This database is necessary for tracking communications and all other elements of the relationship.

Once your CRM is up and running, you can begin providing:

  • Information of value (content)
  • Customer satisfaction measurement and improvement programs
  • Customers for life programs
  • Personalized communications that lets the customer know you're listening to them and responding with what's most important

Specific elements of a program might include:

  • A welcome kit
  • Invitation to events of interest
  • Cause-related marketing
  • Newsletters
  • White papers
  • Videos
  • Presentations
  • Customer satisfaction surveys
  • Thank you and anniversary gifts

The benefits of such a program are numerous.  Here are eight:

  1. Move customers up the customer hierarchy from prospects, to triers, to users, to loyal customers to "raving fans"
  2. Increase long-term customer value
  3. Increase "share-of-wallet"
  4. Go beyond "share-of-mind" to "share-of-life"
  5. Reduce churn
  6. Engender loyalty
  7. Promote a dialogue
  8. Reduce marketing expenses as a result of the referrals you are getting

How can your company benefit from a customer bonding program?

Want to Accelerate Sales? Download the Free e-book

Tags: customer satisfaction, improve customer experience to accelerate sales, earn your customers trust, improve loyalty and retention, customer retention, customer satisfaction measurement and improvement, customer bonding programs

Insights Reduce Churn, Accelerate Sales, in Telecommunications

Posted by Tom Smith on Thu, Jul, 11, 2013 @ 08:07 AM

Consumer insights reduce churn in telecommunications

 

Amdocs just completed a study with Informa Telecom and Media that highlights the importance of customer retention and loyalty programs.

Sixty-six percent of operators believe customers are less loyal today than they were two years ago and 70 percent of service providers cite customer retention and loyalty as the critical factor for driving growth with a strategic marketing shift from customer acquisition and market share to long-term customer engagement.

Due to market saturation and increasing competition, 82 percent of service providers believe customer loyalty programs will be "very important" or "important" to their company's strategy over the next five years.

The four key findings of the survey:

  1. Too little, too late: 65 percent of service providers only initiate a retention program when the customer has started the process of leaving, while 90 percent measure customer loyalty by churn rates.
  2. Customer loyalty misconceptions: Service providers saw service quality (97 percent), network coverage (95 percent), network capacity (92 percent) and customer care (86 percent) as the key drivers of customer loyalty.  However, a separate study showed that network coverage and customer care are regarded as basic service requirements by customers and are not competitive differentiators -- they're the equivalent to clean bathrooms in the quick service restaurant industry.  Two-thirds of customers believe personalized and tailored services, proactive care and reward for being loyal customers win their loyalty.
  3. Organizational challenges block loyalty initiatives: Service and knowledge consistency across channels (94 percent), the ability to offer simple, transparent pricing (94 percent) and creating and an integrated view of the customer (89 percent) are seen as being vital in supporting customer retention and loyalty strategies over the next five years.  However, only 21 percent of service providers have the necessary collaboration between their IT, customer retention and loyalty departments to enable this.
  4. Different regions, different churn trends: Most regions show a linear growth trend in customer churn with higher prepaid regions facing the biggest loyalty challenge.  The North American market, despite facing the largest competitive threat, is the one market bucking this trend since service providers have adopted loyalty programs centered on building a complete view and more in-depth knowledge of their customers while also initiating loyalty programs tailored to the individual.

Having been a part of the first loyalty program in the cellular phone industry in the early-1990's the findings of this research are not surprising; however, the lack of adoption of such programs is.

I worked on a customer bonding and customer satisfaction measurement and improvement program for GTE Wireless, now Verizon, that reduced churn by 29 percent in the first year.

In the second year we focused a more personalized program on the top 10 percent heavy users.  This more targeted and rewards-based program reduced churn by nine percent and resulted in $16.2 million in saved revenue.

What surprises me most about the study is that 18 years after having worked on a very successful customer loyalty and retention program, is that more is not being done in the U.S., and around the world, to increase retention and reduce churn.

These programs take a lot of work up front; however, once instituted, the increased customer satisfaction and revenue gains provide a significant ROI. 

I'm surprised every telecommunications and cable TV provider does not have a highly developed customer loyalty and retention program in place.

What strategies and tactics have you employed to increase retention, consumer engagement and reduce churn in your business?

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Tags: accelerate sales, consumer insights accelerate sales, improve loyalty and retention, customer satisfaction measurement and improvement, customer bonding programs