How to Re-Engage Past and Dormant Customers
Just because you’ve secured a customer’s repeated business in the past doesn’t mean that you’ve secured their business for good.
It is a known fact that customers will always come and go. The worst part? Most will disappear even if you do things right. But, even so, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t just let them go. In fact, this only means that you should double down in your efforts of making sure that your customers always remain in the fold, even after not hearing from them for a while.
How do you do that?
Tips for Reaching Out to Inactive Clients
Not every customer is the same. They all have their own individual preferences and needs. However, within those differences are just enough similarities that will allow you to group certain individuals together based on their tendencies and behavior.
For example, customers who you’ve done business with previously and have moved on, belong to one group.
Being that they are different from recurring customers, potential prospects, and new clients, you’ll need to take different steps if you want to compel them to take action.
Identify the Right Clients First
The reality is, not every past customer is worth re-engaging. Let me repeat that. Not every past customer is worth re-engaging.
What you’re looking for when re-engaging with customers that you haven’t heard from in a while are those who you did business with as recently as over the past six months. More importantly, you’ll find your efforts more likely to be rewarded if you targeted dormant customers with a history of repeat purchases as opposed to those who’ve only made a second purchase or only had a single transaction with your business. Contact this second group too, but make the ones with repeat purchases your priority.
Do It Slowly
Approaching past and dormant customers require a more careful approach.
They already know who you are and what your business brings to the table. The only thing that you need to do is to stay on top of their minds. Holidays, big industry and seasonal events, company anniversaries, and difficult times, make for good times to reach out to customers that you haven’t heard from in a while.
One of the most common strategies used by companies is email drip campaigns.
From the name itself, drip campaigns involve sending a series of emails over weeks if not months with the goal of re-building a connection with a former client.
You can start with one email a month, then gradually move on to two for clients who are receptive to your emails, and from then on, you can decide whether or not to further increase the number depending on how many clients responded to your marketing efforts.
Make Them Return
Ultimately, it is on your company to give customers a reason, not just to stay, but also to come back.
If you’re doing deals and discounts for repeat customers, you might also do the same for customers that you haven’t heard from in a while.
A good example of this is what food delivery services do. If they notice an account has gone inactive for a while, they’ll often email the user with a voucher or discount code that they can use on their next purchase. This way, the user is incentivized to go back to the platform and use it again.
What Else Can You Do To Re-Engage Old Customers?
Consider taking a more proactive approach.
Because of COVID-19, many customers have time on their hands. This means that they might be more open to sharing feedback and answering surveys regarding their opinion about the products and services that your business are offering.
Of course, it’s equally important to take the criticism to heart and use it to improve going forward.
Social media has also been tapped by numerous businesses and used to open lines of communication with customers. Social media makes it so much more convenient for both your business and its customers to interact, as well as communicate with each other. But, just as prompt as you reply on social media, make sure that you pay as close attention to your emails as well.
Lastly, don’t forget to thank your customers for taking the time to do business with you. You might even reward them for coming back into the fold, as mentioned earlier, or reward them for referring you to their friends and family.
Establishing connections with consumers takes time. Building them is an even more cumbersome undertaking. What takes even more effort is re-building the lines of communication with clients that you haven’t heard from in a while.
Repeat customers are worth many times more over the course of a business’s lifetime than new customers, the payoff is well worth the investment.
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