If you were asked to name a product or service off the top of your head, one of two things would happen. You’d either name a product or service that you liked, or one that you hated.

That’s how companies, products, and services are remembered. Clearly, you want to be on the “liked” list. To do that you need to have something else besides products and services in store for your customers, and that “something” is simply what you can do that will produce unexpected positive feelings.

So, ask yourself: “What do I offer customers that will give them unexpected positive feelings and keep them coming back?”

If you’re stumbling for an answer, don’t fret. The following are 5 ways that will help you retain customers, get on their “liked” list, and get that much-wanted repeat business:

Personalize

Practice this mantra, “I have frequent interaction with my customers so that when the time comes for them to need my product or service, they will think of me first.” This includes sending thank-you notes. Personalized ones that are handwritten have the biggest impact. When customers see that you have taken the time to personally write them a note, they remember it.

Here’s a tip: take a photograph. It can be of nature, animals, sunrises, sunsets, or anything tasteful and memorable. The point is, people have a hard time throwing away photographs. Write a short thank-you on the back and include a label with your name, company name, address, phone number and website address. Chances are they will put it up on their desk or message board and remember you each time they look at it.

Persistence

There is a fine line between persistence and annoyance. Annoyance happens when you try and overly sell your product or service. Persistence pays off when you address the needs of your customer and fill those needs. Persistence is proactive. Annoyance is reactive.

Here’s a tip: follow up a sale or service with a phone call. Ask the customer about their experience. Ask if there was something more they would like or need. Let them know you are there for them.

Prior Notice

No customer likes to find out that everyone else knew about your good deals before they did. Reach out to your customers and let them know if you are about to launch a new product or service. It’s a great way to stay connected with them.

Here’s a tip: your message can be as simple as: “I wanted you to be one of the first to know about our exciting offer before we release it to the public.” How powerful is that!

Product/Service of the Month

Having a product or service of the month is a great way to build anticipation and excitement for your customers.

Here’s a Tip: nearly every month of the year has some sort of holiday connected with it (New Years, Valentines, Easter/Spring, April Fools, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Happy Holiday Season, etc.) Consider “themed” product or service of the month items. For instance, we offer business coaching. We might break our Product/Service of the month into seasons. “Spring Into Action”; “Hot” Deals For Summer”; “Fall Into Fortune”; “Put The ‘Win’ Back In Winter”, etc.

“Purchase” Anniversaries

Yes! On the anniversary of the date they bought your product or service, wish them (and their product or service, of course) a happy anniversary! Of course, anniversaries can highlight birthdays, your company’s anniversary, a product or service’s anniversary.

Here’s a tip: announce your company’s or product’s anniversary to your customers and let them know that they, the customer, are the best gift you could ever have gotten, and thank them for their patronage. Consider adding a little “something” to their purchase that day as your gift to them to thank them for their loyalty. This could be a loyalty card, gift card, coupon offer or any other promotion you feel would be appropriate.

Customer service is not a chore; it’s a privilege. Agreeably there are some customers who are not a good match, but for the most part, if you practice the above “5 ‘P’s of Positive Customer Service” you will feel like you’ve doubled or even tripled your customer base. How? Simple! Your customers will keep coming back. They, in turn, will refer you to their friends and colleagues, who will tell their friends and colleagues… and on and on it goes. It doesn’t get much better than that!

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