Carpet Cleaning Issues - Carpet construction, upholstery cleaning, stain removal, equipment, events, etc.
Best Ways to keep existing customers
Posted by woodman (woodman), 19 September 2003Having viewed the posts on obtaining new customers it would be interesting to know the tactics used by cleaners on here in keeping existing customers.
After all it is much cheaper to keep your customers than it is to obtain new so the upmost importance has to be attached to keeping them loyal.
I bet there is a whole myriad of tactics used it would be good if we could share them on here with our fellow cleaners.
Apart from the obvious, do a great job, what would be your number 1.
Mine are keep your data base up to date and re-call every six months on a rota with a simple card
letting them know that cleaning may be due.
News letters are another,doesn't have to be much just whats going on in the industry, free b's are another ,free spot cleaner ask them to ring when a re-fill is required they nearly always ask for a carpet to be cleaned aswell.
Special offers, one room free, limited period only etc
and so on.
What is your secret in keeping you customers loyal.
You know you can share it with us.
Posted by mike_halliday (mike_halliday), 20 September 2003the reason most carpet cleaners lose customers is not because they did a bad job but because the customers forgets thier name.
the key to keeping customers is to constantly expose them to your name, this starts from the very first moment they come into contact with your company.
My company is called Henry Halliday & Son. from the first initial contact on the phone to me cleaning thier carpet they will have heard & read my name 7 times (this does'nt include the 50 times they will read it on my embriodered shirt )
Even years later all my customer never forget I'm called Henry.
I also send out reminder cards every 3 months and 'book early for Xmas cards'
if anyones reading this post who is thinking of starting a carpet cleaning company do yourselve a favour, call the company after yourself not eg; 'supaclean, ultraclean,kleen'n'brite, fresh 'n' clene.
And the worst using initials, A & G Services or P & P Cleaners. no one remembers these sorts of names
Posted by PeterH (PeterH), 21 September 2003I've been sending out a newsletter for the past 3 years or so. I send them out 3 or 4 times a year.
I keep accurate records so I know that my repeat/recommendation business has doubled over this time. I don't do anything fancy, just one side of A4 black and white ( so they can be photocopied cheaply ).
I get my topics from mags, customers, and BBs! I always put in 2/3 ( clean ) jokes.
Each month I also send out post cards to people I haven't seen for 18 months.
This is fairly simple to do in Word 2000 - apart from the usual fields of name, address1, address2 etc, you have a final field called last clean date. You can then print labels for any particular month.
Hope this makes sense, Peter.
Posted by Derek (Derek Bolton), 21 September 2003Hi Peter
Have you ever asked your customers whether they wish to have this material sent to them?
This is in no way a criticism just an enquiry on how it/they are received.
We all get repeatedly bombarded with junk mail on a daily basis and I was wondering if this method of promoting your business would be seen by the customer in the same way and perhaps be offputting to some?
Posted by PeterH (PeterH), 21 September 2003Good point Derek, and one that I have thought about.
Junk mail is getting a bit out of hand now, and yet I'm a prime offender with my regular leaflet drops.
Regarding the newsletter, I've only had one request not to send it but that was from a lady who'd moved out of the area.
I try to make my newsletter interesting and useful - I don't include so called special offers etc. I always include cleaning tips like using vinegar or baking soda, or how to clean the computer etc. This month I'm covering carpet moths, carpet shading and cleaning cushions.
Sometimes I tell customers that I'll be sending them a newsletter, so far nobody has objected but that may just be my charming personality!
Posted by woodman (woodman), 22 September 2003Hi Peter
You can easily get round sending unwanted mail to your customers just put a tick box on the bottom which simply asks them to tick it and send it back if they no longer wish to receive mail.
You can then send them only the re-call cards when the time is due.
Posted by woodman (woodman), 22 September 2003Sorry Mike don't agree
The reason most cleaners will lose customers is if they carry out shoddy work.
I have no doubt that you would have seen all the info on customer loyalty, they are 5 times more likely to tell friends of shoddy work than good and if you go by your name then every one in your town will know John Smith is a bodger.
I can't see anything wrong in using your own name or using a descriptive name ie cleane & shine or whatever,
although if your name is ,Constantine Theodopolopolis Carpet Cleaners, you might have a problem with cheques and you'd need a long van
Posted by mike_halliday (mike_halliday), 22 September 2003Woodman, I was talking about 'professional' carpet cleaners who would'nt dream of doing shoddy work.
In this case then customers forgetting your name will be No1
But I stand by using your name. which of these names says refinement, long established & trustworthy
Henry Halliday & Son or Klene & Brite
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