Customer Retention - my top 3 points.

As I was reading through articles on customer retention today, I thought that I would share with you the three things that came to mind for me.

Analyze how you handle your customers

Today, the only way to retain customers and grow market share is to provide customised and unique experiences and advice for each individual. To remain competitive, companies must rely on technology that can help to anticipate customer needs before an interaction takes place and then deliver relevant and timely communications.

Ensure that you continuously review the end-to-end process and technology involved.

Rethink the way you interact with your customers

It is possible to throw out the traditional rules of marketing, such as outbound campaign rules, as a result of having sufficient customer insight. It is possible to communicate with clients as often as needed. By following the rules of appropriate interaction rather than implementing a campaign-based contact schedule such as 'calling every three weeks or so, depending on the segment' you can reduce churn and ensure that even those who do not accept the offer still have a positive experience.

The opportunity

A call centre can only help retain customers if it is provided with the opportunity to do so. If a customer wishes to cancel, will he or she be directed to call in? There are some companies that require that customers write in to cancel, and most of them simply offer the option of writing or calling but don't attempt to influence the customer in any way.

The chances of retaining a customer when they have chosen to leave are significantly lower than if they contacted you. By writing the letter, the customer confirms to themselves that they have made the right decision to cancel the contract.

If you encourage customers to call in at the point of cancellation, you may incur a small increase in costs, but your chances of retaining the customer increase. At the point of cancellation, retention activities can be two or three times more effective over the telephone.

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