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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 15804
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Wed Jul 13, 2022 11:27 am    Post subject: Finding VS Keeping Customers (Students) Reply with quote

I'm of the mindset that students ARE customers.

What's harder, keeping or finding customers??

I'd not be surprised that the answer to my question would be varied to the Nth degree. That's fine, for whatever one's reason(s) might or might not be. The P&L would expose that because the bottom line dictates.

In the business world, keeping a current customer is better than gaining a new customer. However, many businesses spend far more revenue on advertising and charming any potential customers than to keeping their current customers tickled pink. I agree that signing up new customers can be quite exciting and does provide that unswerving P&L equation of how fast a company grows.

Yet, in the long run, working to make current customers happy is far more beneficial than spending resources on potential customers. Itís cheaper in the long run and will make you more profits. It should be just that.

It's far easier to sell to a current customer than a new one. The current customer has established time and trust of the business, kind of like Goodwill, whereas the new customer is skeptical of the business, at least. It costs quite a ton to acquire a potential customer than to keep an old customer satisfied. There's a solid probability that a potential customer will buy. On that same note, there's a probability that a current customer will purchase another product. In fact, 65% of a companyís business is made up of current customers. Current customers are not only more likely to buy new products from you, but they also spend more on your products than new customers.

Maintaining a customerís business for any period of time may seem like it balances out by replacing them quicker than losing them. Seems goofy, huh?!? It has been found that even a 5% increase in maintaining a customer can raise the entire businesses profitability by 75%. Whereas the cost of finding potential customers, marketing to them, and convincing them to buy your product is far more than the cost of keeping a current customer ecstatic. That doesn't mean selling things that the customer doesn't need...customers are educated, and they will figure out, sooner than later, what the business was up to...which was an underhanded intent of the business and not in the favor of the customer.

The cost of losing a customer is quite harsh, while the cost of keeping a customer is outweighed by the benefits. Customer loyalty shouldn't be taken lightly ever because sincere loyalty can bring a heap of undeniable benefits to your business: referrals, good reviews, and they are more likely to purchase whatever your MA school has to offer. Both the positives and the negatives are high because a customer with a bad experience is far more likely to write a bad review, turning off other potential customers. An unhappy customer will bury a business in a mountain of negative word-of-mouth that will travel faster than an avalanche of bad publicity. Wherever a dissatisfied customer can spread negativity, they most assuredly will, whether it be on-line or not; bad customer service will make a business or kill it. Customers have the power to decide for themselves if what you have to offer is best for them. Damage control on any bad reviews is difficult, if not impossible, depending on where the customer posted the review.

In closing. it takes a lot less work to keep a customer happy than to find a new one. The effort and resources it takes to secure new customers is extremely difficult: you have to find that customer, set up a marketing strategy, put lots of money and time into that marketing strategy, and then hope that it works on a small percentage of your target audience.

What does this mean?? Customer service is paramount. Focus more of your efforts and resources on customer service. If the customer has an issue or complaint, respond to it immediately. This is also crucial if the customer is voicing the grievance on one of your social media accounts, because other customers or potential customers need to see that you are working on it right away. When interacting with your customer online, let your own personality show through. You want to appear as human as you are in real life. Reward your customers with a loyalty program or promotional discounts. Create a separate, specialized email marketing campaign for your current customers.
Follow-up with customers after performing a service. If they were unhappy, find out how to solve the problem. If they were happy with your services, ask for a referral.

Customer service in America seems to have gone on the wayside in a very bad way; a business has only one chance to impress, so make that impression over your business be a very positive one.



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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 15804
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 2022 12:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No opinions, so far. Anyone? I'd be very interested in hearing your thoughts on this subject. I've my own experiences in this subject, of which, isn't etched in granite, nor is it the only way in this subject; I've learned from my own trials and tribulations in and off the floor.



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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 29367
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 2022 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree that customer retention is very important to the success of a business. However, current customers were once new customers....

I think in the Martial Arts business, it's more difficult than just retaining current students. If we could retain 100% of our students for the duration of the school's life, then that would be great. However, life gets in the way, and makes this difficult. I would like to see if there has ever been a study done on the average live an MA student. I would guess it's pretty low; between 1 and 5 years.

With all that said, I do agree that focusing on student retention is of paramount importance; especially if you have a number of students that are already bought it. However, to keep the school open for these students, keeping a steady influx of new students only benefits them.
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