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What’s the Difference Between Customer Service and Retention?

What’s the difference between customer service and retention? A big difference, one you provide excellent customer service so they return.

This subject came up when a gal was sharing me her experiences while she was in Sedona, for a weekend getaway, some good ones and some not so good.

I decided to take my relationship marketing services to a narrower niche of customer retention, particularly businesses in Hospitality. As I was talking to Margo, she was sharing the places that they went out to eat at and what kind of customer service they got. Raving the great service! Which is a great thing.

Then I said that, there is a difference between customer service and customer retention and that I am aiming to help these wonderful places like Rene’s, The Hike House and other coffee & tea bars to keep their customer service up also to help them have more sales by getting their customers to keep coming back more frequently.

And of course like Margo was sharing she was surprised of some businesses where she lives, they are still open, even when it’s obvious they don’t care. Their customer service sucks!

Here’s the thing you can still have great customer service and yet not have a great experience in more sales.

Carol Deckert was sharing that Ruby Tuesday had a promotional offer for the month of August, if you came in before August 30 you’ll get 15% off your bill. The owner of this restaurant said, because of this promotion, his sales were 200% better than the month before.

You can have all the promotions you want, doesn’t mean you are going to retain those customers unless you have a system or program to keep them coming back.

When I was a promotions manager at a chain restaurant, I would put together a themed party every two months. Our sales from these kind of events would always increase our sales of 100% or more. Why? Because it brought people together for fun and they all had a great experience. Did we retain them every month? Nope.

Even though these are great examples about customer service, it’s also about advertising and marketing. They have a high ROI in terms of their advertising dollars spent.

The question you need to ask yourself “How much money was left on the table by not using a program for customer retention?” The saying goes, whenever you have an event, you are promoting your next event at the current one. You want to lead people and have them return again and again.

Get my report on why you need a customerretentionprogram.4.17

We live in a challenging times right now and we really need to be good at establishing relationships with our customers to be competitive. If we aren’t, then it is a sign for disaster. You need to get closer to your customer to understand them and what motivates them to buy from you and why.


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