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Creative Ways to Contact Past Customers

By Cathydionisio Subscribe to RSS | January 11th 2012 | Views:

Every business needs to keep the lines of communication open with its customers and clientele. They are the lifeblood of the business, and one of the biggest challenges for a business is to create and retain repeat customers. Having repeat customers says you have good customer service and a great product, and you’re likely beating your competition. So it pays in the long run to maintain customer relationships.

You need a way to reach your customers, be it by phone, mail or email. So when you get a new customer, you should immediately find a way to get some contact information from them. If you have a web site, email registration is a good option. It’s quick, simple and not too invasive, and you can always get in touch with them down the road for additional contact information, if necessary. You’re also building a targeted list that you can use for your other products and services.

If you’ve ever somehow lost contact with former customers and need to rekindle that relationship and get them buying again, hopefully you already have a database of some sort with their contact information. Here are some effective ways to get the attention of former customers:

• Direct Mail Postcards – Use bright colors and small bursts of text, offering discounts, freebies, and other special offers as a thank you for being a great customer in the past. The bigger the offer, the better. Postcards are inexpensive to mail in bulk and usually get noticed first because they aren’t enclosed in envelopes that have to be opened.

• Direct Email – The same strategy for postcards should be used for your email lists. Keep the amount of text down to a minimum and always include a link back to your web site. Inform them of new changes you’ve made since they’ve been gone. Only be careful not to spam anyone; an opt-out link should always be included. Automated email follow-up software, such as GetResponse, will do this for you and save time.

• Free Gift By Mail – Particularly at holiday times, you might want to send a personal gift to old customers – branded with your name and contact info, of course – again as a thank you for past business. Be creative and give a booklet and not just a boring card.

• Personal Phone Call – Adding a personal touch like this will be totally unexpected, and since this isn’t a popular follow-up method in business, a warm and friendly conversation will be remembered.

When using these methods, you’re also going to want to find out why customers stopped patronizing you in the first place. Include a questionnaire and allow them to be as candid as they want. When you know where you went wrong, you can be sure not to make the same mistakes in the future.

Cathydionisio - About Author:
Learn more about using Stress Reduction Booklets as a way to reach past customers.

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