Let’s start by agreeing that we haven’t met a single person who is not delighted by surprises. Moreover, receiving special treatment from the software we use, nothing beats that! There are a thousand cumstoer onboarding metrics and almost all of them talk the least about the final and most crucial step: Delighting your customer to confirm retention. As discussed in detail in our ‘customer churn’ blog, it costs six to seven times more to onboard a customer than retain one in the SaaS industry. Ours is a growing industry with a ton of competition, with companies looking out to poach customers in the blink of an eye. And customers are ready to switch to your competition at the first experience of dissatisfaction. A delighted customer is just another user who is padded with our safety net of loyalty. So how do you keep a customer loyal and delighted?
6 ways to delight your customer with a surprise
1. Build a genuine relationship
“Communication is the key” is a widely used phrase but seldom put to good use in our SaaS industry. No, we do not just refer to customer feedback after which an automatic mail is sent to the customer that their thoughts have been acknowledged. We refer to showing up at their doorstep with a surprise gift when they least expect it. A new subscriber to your platform is slowly moving towards full engagement, all they need is a little push to confirm that it is in the right direction. Or, a customer has been religiously using your platform for the last year but is a little resistant to upselling. A basket of goodies with your company logo might just do the trick. Customers today want to be valued, and nothing says ‘valued’ like personalized gifts (especially when they are least expecting it). Moreover, instead of using this as a one-time technique, keep dropping subtle reminders at frequent intervals so that the client knows that full engagement is a roadmap to not just satisfaction, but being valued.
2. Social media strategies
You know how to make the most of social media for product launches and upselling, but did you know that most customer connections happen via social media? Use your social media not just for selling but also building customer engagement. A customer tagging you from their social media handles is a great way to increase your audience outreach. Instead of commenting thank you or jumping right to solving their queries, a personal comment makes a difference. Everlane here has some really awesome social media marketers who know quite a few things about relationship marketing. Before you make another expense, we have some easy ways to boot the strap. Picking out loyal customers every week and giving them a shoutout for their activity on your platform is an easy way to show that they are heard. (Psst. we recommend letting them know in advance) Combing your social media with a personal and humourous voice is all it takes to delight your customers.
3. Transparency works like a charm
Visualise yourself sitting on a sofa paying an exorbitant amount for a newly launched software without proper knowledge of where your money is going. All we see are lines of worry with an underlying promise of never again. What if we told our customers the exact division of their subscription money and where it is utilized? A big name in the SaaS industry Buffer is so committed to transparency that it shows its subscribers not just the exact breakdown of their money but also the employee’s salaries. Well, salaries are a long shot but who wouldn’t like knowing the exact utilisation of where their money is going? True to its motive, Buffer saw a major escalation in growth once it switched to this method. The reason is, it was successful in building a relationship with its customers by gaining credibility and showcasing confidence.
4. The face behind your SaaS is human, remind them
They need to know you as a human instead of just a bunch of bots sitting across their software. And the best way to mark your presence is by actively paying attention to the customer interactions outside your product. If you only engage with your customer via your product they will never ever segregate you from your service which leaves us on a thin line with little to no room for mistakes. See this, for example, it took 3 minutes for the customer to hit unsubscribe after this conversation. It is important for your customers to see you as a brand first to be able to associate with you in case of any dissatisfaction. Delighting your customers by actively engaging with them outside your product, is an underrated yet effective way to surprise and delight them.
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5. Loyalty for the win
This one needs no roadmap to explain. Loyal customers are the reason why your business is. Early Access Sale, unique discounts and special offers for loyalty are some effortless ways to delight your customers with an early surprise. You cannot just convert your users and forget about them, it is important to show them that you care. Loyalty programs can be decided as per the company’s budget and season demands, but for a year-round benefit, we suggest a point-based and referral-based loyalty program. Point-based keeps the customer hooked to your product resulting in optimum engagement and referral based is just another way of word-of-mouth marketing. Both together makes the best combo for a delighted customer!
6. Nothing beats outstanding customer service
It takes an army to win a war but all it takes is a team of supportive support executives to win a regressed customer. Training your team so that they develop the ability to convert a negative experience into a happy customer is the most underrated but efficient way to retain a client. See this example of Nike-
Nike solved this issue in less than 5 hours.
Stories like these go viral, which in turn results in word-of-mouth marketing. Having an internal limit to how much your team can give away to tame aggrieved customers is one way, but how about you start setting aside a budget only for surprise delighting your customers?
Onboarding a customer is just the first step to a booming business. But if you keep onboarding more without taking care of the existing ones, might as well keep trying to start from scratch. It is important to track customer engagement before every single move you make. It might take some time but you’ll end up with a delighted customer who feels valued and has loyalty to your product. Delighted customers in the SaaS industry do the best word-of-mouth marketing (in our case, referrals) and before you know it, it saves so much of your money!