Re-engaging with Dormant Customers

If you are not constantly monitoring the number of customers who actually reply and or respond to your campaigns you will never know how many of them are inactive or dormant. If you don’t know then, it would be impossible re-engaging with dormant customers and you will most certainly be losing out on business through sheer negligence. Not only is it vital to keep your active customers so, with growing competition it is crucial to dig deep and get in to top gear towards re-engaging with dormant customers. Your competition might not wait too long before taking them away!

Before re-engaging with dormant customers, it would be necessary to establish a list of these customers. This is an important step to foremost know whether the promotion and message content is suitable and of interest to your target audience. If your dormant customers have increased over time, you would know that it is time to change the content or add relevance to the customers you wish to engage with. Another important reason to determine how many customers are disengaged is to allow you to keep a track of how many customers actually open and peruse the message sent across and find the content engaging enough to respond. It would also help to know if the number of inactive customers is rising. A high number of such customers could negatively impact your reputation and also the profitability of your company.

Post determining how many customers have fallen into the inactive category, it is time to look at how you can be re-engaging with dormant customers. This would involve re-establishing contact with customers who were once active and interested and also remove from your list customers who would not be interested again. Not taking the requisite action could pose a risk for your business and also lead to ignoring of potential and current customers. Start with taking steps towards re-engaging with dormant customers –

– Begin with identifying those users / customers who have not opened or read or responded to your communication. This could either be over a certain period of time or a certain number of communication mails that have been ignored.

– Prepare a separate list of such users and then send them individual and personalized messages letting them know that they are missed. Offer them special offers and incentives but still provide them with a link to unsubscribe from your mailers if they so desire.

– When people respond, put them on your active list and send a final message to those who have not responded. If they still don’t respond, it would be appropriate to permanently remove them from the mailing list. It is better to keep focused on a smaller yet responsive group than trying to maintain a larger but ineffective base of customers.

– Re-engaging with dormant customers sets the base for keeping these customers constantly engaged post their ‘return’. However, caution must be exercised and mailers must not be too frequent lest you irritate them for good.

– Mailers that go out to these re-engaged customers must be as personalized as possible and the content must be clear and concise. Inform them regularly of new launches and contests and send them enticing offers, discounts and incentives – this provides these customers with an added motivation to open their mails.

– Offer some enticement that will keep them excited to receive and view the next communication from you. Ensure that the element of surprise never goes out from your communication – this will keep your customers interested.

– Ensure that only a few of the mailers have promotional content – too much can potentially disengage your customers.

– If any of these customers unsubscribe, it would be necessary to find out the reason they did and fix the causes if possible.

– Whatever the communication, ensure that it is simple, interesting and allows the customer to respond and comment

– Ask customers to provide their feedback and suggestions on what more they would like to see and receive.

All companies realize that disengaged and dormant customers are a major setback since this could potentially mean that the customers have moved over to customers. However, despite this many companies ignore these signals and focus on those that are active and engaged. This is a serious error since it is a well-known fact it is more difficult to retain existing customers than to attract and engage new customers. For companies it not only translates to loss in sales from disengaged customers but also added expenditure to replace this lost business.

However, if companies invest in CRM software and harness the power of big data, companies can identify and predict customers who could be losing interest and fix the issue before the customers actually break away. With so much technology and online customer data available it would be unacceptable now to let customers lose interest and deflect to competition. Data is everywhere – the ‘digital footprints’ of customers that guide companies in gaining expertise of what customers need. Companies that refuse to recognize the essential nature of this data often have to pay with huge losses, decline in reputation and maybe even the demise of their company. Without using the requisite tools to monitor customer data, even the best marketing and promotional strategies would fail. Also re-engaging with dormant customers becomes impossible.

Having a regular audit of customers on your current mailing list and then segmenting them in to active and dormant would make it easier for companies to know how to engage with which segment of customer. For disengaged customers the frequency and content of the communication would be more intense and regular whereas with engaged customers it would be less frequent based on the customer’s individual preferences.

The fact is that keeping customers engaged is hard and second only to attracting them. However, it is now becoming increasingly necessarily for companies to indulge in re-engaging with dormant customers if they hope to remain successful and beat competition at the game of business.

Companies are focusing now on surveying ‘once customers’ in a bid to get their feedback as to what went wrong and what the company needs to do to get their business back. This serves a two-fold purpose – your company is getting invaluable information and customers are able to perceive genuine commitment and concern. This ‘reaching out’ will leave a lasting good impression on these dormant customers even if they don’t re-engage immediately. They would most likely recommend your service to others and would definitely remember you the next time they have use of your company’s offerings.

While not all re-engagement activities are fruitful, the fact is that making the time and re-engaging with dormant customers does have its advantages and does make an impact on a company’s bottom-line. It may be tedious and a long process but a re-engaged customer has the capability of become one of your most valuable assets in the form of brand advocacy and sound feedback. Over time these customers become highly profitable and loyal and hence re-engaging with dormant customers is a smart and lucrative move. Companies must continually strive to find the best possible and innovative ways to entice and excite their customers. And in the event that customers lose interest, it is vital to re-ignite the interest and zeal that was once part of the association.

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