Make Money with Horses

August 5, 2013
Don Blazer
Don Blazer

I’m an existing customer. What have you done for me lately?

It seems everyone is after “new customers”. Most see new customers as business growth, increased revenue and hopefully, increased profits.

So most of the time, businesses advertise a special offer, a discount or a gift to attract new customers. And often enough, it works.

But is it really the best approach to growth and increased profits?

While getting new customers is important, there are always a lot of additional expenses involved—the gift or special discount to start.

When you factor in all the additional time and expenses associated with a new customer, the profit margin on the sale is usually less than the profit margin gained by “reselling” an existing customer.

The value of retaining existing customers begins with knowing the customer has already overcome any resistance to your product. Selling an existing customer (a happy one) is easier than selling a new customer.

And existing customers provide word of mouth referrals and sales for you; they are part of your sales staff.

So why, if your existing customers are so valuable do so many fail to answer the existing customer’s question: “what have you done for me lately?”

Here are some tips to answer.

1. Offer loyalty and rewards programs. If giving a new customer makes them happy, how happy to do you think an existing customer is going to be with a special gift which says, “thanks”.

2. Stay in touch and keep customers informed of what is going on. Your social media, Facebook, Tweeter and chat groups or blogs are a great way to tell customers what you are doing for them this week.

3. Provide great customer service. Be happy to be of help; never see a customer request as a time consuming chore.

4. Be responsive fast. Customers truly appreciate a quick response to an inquiry or complaint. In this age of “instant” everything, you can’t be too quick in showing the customer you’re listening and interested.

5. Make contacting you easy: use the phone, email, text or tweet. Be available.

6. Make it easy to order, reorder and pay. You’d be surprised at how hard it is to pay some businesses…you can’t find the address, they don’t take credit cards, invoices are late or hard to read. When it comes to getting the money, make it easy for the customer to give it to you….now that is something you want to do for them as often as possible.

Don Blazer teaches the course, The Business of Making Money With Horses for’s college degree or certification programs.