Customer Retention Fails: 5 Signs A Customer Is About To Break Up With Your Marketing Agency – Search Engine Journal | Region & Cash

Learn more about avoiding vanity metrics and spicing up your presentations with the CallRail Customer Retention Guide.

Sign 3: Your client says they’re not getting the results they expected

So you have prepared a detailed report and presented it to the customer. You’re proud of your team’s work because you’ve made significant progress on a campaign.

But the customer is not happy.

They’re not seeing the results they want, or they’re not getting results fast enough.

There was a misunderstanding somewhere.

Proper onboarding and training of your customers is key to a healthy working relationship with them. If they misunderstand something about the process in the beginning, it’s much harder to keep them happy in the long run.

If you notice a misunderstanding within the first few weeks of working together, it’s easy to fix! But later, more weeks or months later, a miscommunication becomes in their eyes a delivery failure.

As uncomfortable as these conversations can be, you need to understand exactly what went wrong.

The most important question is: was there a misunderstanding or is there a real issue with your agency’s performance?

Either way, you may need to adjust your onboarding process.

What to do: Improve customer onboarding and prove your ROI with data

If it makes sense, now is the time to defend your work.

Back it up with data and make sure the customer understands exactly how your efforts will benefit them.

Step 1: Think about and consider the following:

  • Are they focusing on the wrong metrics?
  • Have you explained that not all conversions are created equal and that some are worth more than others?
  • Do your customers understand that qualitative data can be just as important (or more important) than quantitative data?
    (For example, did you have fewer leads overall but delivered more quality leads by refining a landing page’s audience targeting?)

Check out the CallRail Guide for some great examples of these concepts and how to teach customers the intricacies of marketing data.

Step 2: Review your onboarding process

It may be worth repeating some parts of the onboarding process for dissatisfied customers when they are ready to work with you.

This can introduce new stakeholders to your process and remind existing ones what the overall goals are and your plans to achieve them.

Step 3: Adjust your own marketing efforts to target customers with aligned priorities

If you’re running a long-term campaign for a client who wants quick wins, the communication flaw may be in your marketing.

What promises and metrics do you focus on in your marketing materials?

Do you set expectations quickly and clearly with SLAs?

Do you take the time to evaluate leads and how well their goals align with your services?

If you have gaps in your marketing and lead generation processes, you could end up with the next sign:

Sign 4: Your customer is always upset

We all had them. Customers who simply cannot be satisfied. No matter what you do, it feels like they are always mad at you, always demanding answers, and despite your best efforts, they eventually leave.

This isn’t just a problem for the sales team when it comes to finding a new customer. Sour relationships can damage your reputation.

In the end, it may be best to let these clients go, as you will learn in the CallRail guide.

Instead, focus your energies on improving your marketing communications and targeting.

When a client leaves, you breathe a sigh of relief – he wasn’t the right person for your agency to begin with. The relationship was doomed from the start.

What to do: Use data-driven marketing to find customers who align with your services and goals

Step 1: Decide what your ideal customers look like

Who are you targeting and why?

What are your goals?

What are your pain points and how do you plan to solve them?

These are basic questions you’re familiar with, but if you’ve attracted customers who are difficult to please, then something may have gone wrong at this step.

Step 2: Reassess your audiences

It can be helpful to think about your audience’s audience. Do you specialize in reaching a specific audience? Which cohorts and demographics have previous campaigns been most successful with?

You may want to align and focus your marketing based on past successes. Sometimes it can take a while before you learn what your agency excels at.

Case studies are an essential part of not only your marketing efforts, but also your understanding of your own success.

Step 3: Implement lead scoring to get a clear view of qualified customers

Another important process to implement is lead scoring.

Download the CallRail Customer Retention Guide to learn about lead scoring and other tactics you can use to ensure your customers are a good match.

Sign 5: Your client is reducing their spending or saying they are outgrowing you

Sometimes you didn’t do anything wrong.

In fact, you did your job so well that the client no longer needs you.

If you notice a successful client reducing their spend or letting you communicate with newly hired in-house digital marketing experts, these could be signs they are outgrowing you.

There’s often not much you can do when a client ends your relationship for budget reasons or because they’re taking things internally.

But you should still make one last attempt to prove the value of your work.

What to do: Create case studies for success stories

A case study is a great opportunity to remind the client how effective you are.

Step 1: Ask if they would be willing to be part of a case study

If you remember your successes together, you could convince her to keep allocating her budget to you.

It’s also an opportunity to talk to them about new services you’d like to offer.

If they leave, then a case study is a positive note towards ending the relationship. It helps you highlight your wins in future marketing campaigns and can keep lines of communication open after they’re gone.

Step 2: Conduct an exit survey

Make sure an exit survey is in place.

You can learn what services you can offer in the future to keep customers longer and give them one last chance to talk to you about any pain points.

Step 3: Start a referral program

Of course, don’t forget to ask about setting up a referral program. As they evolve and grow, they will inevitably come across companies that could use your services, and they know just how much you have helped them.

Relationship building is key to any agency’s success, and partnering with current and former clients can help generate new business. It can also deepen existing relationships.

Armed with data and communication plans, you can build longer, more fruitful relationships and reduce customer churn.

Learn more about all of these data-driven strategies in CallRail’s The Agency Marketer’s Guide To Client Retention.

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