How to Keep Customers Forever

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Scenario: "Dude, it's all in the pitching. It's how you present yourself. Wear sexy suits. You'll keep them, forever. F-o-r-e-v-e-r. Yay!" Oh-no-izzle. To keep customers forever, just do this: Provide them value. That's it. Sweet, simple, and much sexier.

How Most Companies Go Wrong with Customers

Yes, customer retention rocks because it provides a much greater bang for your buck. Yet, when companies from sea-to-shining-sea try to retain their customers, what do they do?
  • "Let's pitch this product!"
  • "Dude, you gotta buy this shizzle!"
  • "You cannot live properly without purchasing!"
  • "Even your mama wants it!"
Look well-intentioned-but-misguided-freaks: People don't care about you, your business, or your mama. The ^1 person in Johnny's world is Johnny. He'd much prefer a story about his high-school-football-playing glory years than your billion-dollar invention. He'd much rather you fetch him his coat than picking up your million-dollar check. With every interaction with you, he's thinking: "Why should my badass talk to you? How are you helping me, sucka?" So if you're trying to keep him as a customer for life, know how to influence him -- personally. That is, provide him value -- repeatedly.

How to Provide Johnny Value

Say Johnny runs a potato warehouse. You're selling his company your sweet-mutha-good-gosh tea. Your company's purpose: to make the world freakishly healthy.

So, if some incompetent CEO ran your business, what would he/she do?

  1. Sell tea.
  2. End transaction.

But since you're the bigger badass who's driven to make the world healthy, what do you do?

  1. Sell tea.
  2. Give him yoga/meditation/health books.
  3. Provide him deliciously healthy recipes.
  4. Send articles about keeping his employees healthy.
  5. Look for other ways to provide more value.
Remember: if you're providing real value that helps Johnny's business or his personal life in some way, he'll want you to stick around. You're tapping Johnny's ^1 interest: Johnny.

How Providing Value Rocks

Give first. Receive second. That's how the human interaction cycle fundamentally works -- and according to famed psychologist Robert Cialdini, makes relationships beneficial. Cialdini calls it the "reciprocity" factor. Unless your mama dropped you on your head when you were a baby: We as freakishly awesome humans want to repay acts of kindness. So, if you're providing amazingly awesome value to their lives, they'll provide amazingly awesome value to yours.

"It seems time-consuming! So, I just provide value to every single customer?!"

Not quite. Here's what we'd do: Take your top 20% most profitable customers, then focus squarely on them. Now, "profitable" could mean past transactions -- but, we'd rather focus on future profit potential. Now, "profit potential" could mean:
  1. They have a vast network of personal/business connections.
  2. They're aiming for freakishly gigantic goals.
  3. They have a filthy big budget.
  4. They're around people who absolutely, irresistibly love them.
Of course, the other 80% could provide tremendous value to your business as well. Biggest secret tip we could offer you: Send them your email newsletter that's filled with weekly juicy-good tips. The next time you're looking for a sweet, simple, and sexy way to keep your customers, remember:

Provide freakishly good-and-juicy value.

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Posted on December 13

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