Creating lifelong customers

Creating lifelong customers should always be prevalent in our marketing strategy and this includes when dealing business to business. After all, it takes far more energy to gain a new customer than to retain an existing one.

Just recently, I was reminded this important point when I saved $1399 and a fellow business gained free advertising and a lifelong customer.

Let me set the scene. With Boxing Day and New Year sale signs bouncing off every satellite beaming down to earth, it made perfect sense to upgrade my laptop, or so I thought.

If I’d been a technology expert, I could have simply ordered online or walked in and out of the store without any conversation. But I’m not. I like to see first-hand what I’m buying and also need to talk it through to make sure my logic is correct. After all I’m the one who will be using it every day for my work and lugging it from airport to airport which makes things like weight very important to me.

So, I took myself off to my nearest specialist store and I was ready to spend top dollar. So that I could make visual comparisons, I also brought along my old laptop that had been purchased from this same store two or three years earlier in my first positive experience with them.

“Why do you need a new one?” was the young sale assistant’s first question eyeing my current laptop.

Storage issues was my prompt reply as I’d been struggling with memory, the laptop in particular – that was a joke, in case you are wondering. Apart from that, I love my laptop.

To cut a long story short, this lovely young sales assistant went on to explain how I could clean up my laptop and alternate storage options. He even logged on and showed me how.

“Yes the new model has double the memory but you really don’t need it just yet,” was his conclusion.

I walked out of that store with $1399 still in my bank account and every intention of returning there again when I really do need a new laptop or anything else computer related. The integrity of the staff convinced me that my best interests as a customer are first and foremost, not in them making a quick dollar. My trust rating of them just blew through the roof.

Since that wonderful experience I have been telling everyone in my locality that this business has great customer service as I do for a number of other local businesses that give great service and have earned my trust.

This is exactly how a business wins lifelong customers and generates free word of mouth advertising.

How well is your business doing in this regard?

Kerry Anderson – – businesswoman, philanthropist and community advocate from Central Victoria who is passionate about rural and regional small business