Sunday, June 19, 2005

Do you reward loyalty?

I have been subscribing to Businessweek for the last two years. The last few months have seen me receive mailings reminding me that my subscription is coming to an end and that I need to renew it very soon in order to receive "uninterrupted delivery".

The funny thing is that the special deal on the subscription is no better than what I could find online (not on their website but through a third party) even if I let it lapse and decide a few months on that I really do want a subscription. As a result there is no incentive for me to renew NOW rather than later.

I am not sure if I am going to miss the magazine. I am focusing my reading on marketing alot at the moment.

The point of all of this is that Businessweek are not rewarding me to stay with them. Other magazine publishers have sent me mailings trying to get me to subscribe and they offer all sorts of gifts. But once you become a subscriber does the love stop?

Does your company treat customers in a similar way? Once you have them, a good deal is good enough, not a great deal. Existing customers are your best source of new customers. They spread the word about your product if you provide something truly remarkable (see Seth Godin's Purple Cow for more). But the old adage of 'treat them mean, keep them keen' doesn't work.

As I have said on more than one occasion here: Love your customers!

That means making them feel special. Be more than a provider of a magazine, or software or shampoo or whatever it is you sell. Let me know that you value the relationship.