Gleaner tipster Orville ‘Clarkie’ Clarke has swept both sections of the Caymanas Track Limited (CTL) tipsters’ competition’s first bi-monthly race for 2016. Spotting five winners on the final raceday last Saturday, ‘Clarkie’ moved away from closest rival Jimmie of the Star to beast him by four winners (46 to 42) to secure the $20,000 prize. And the veteran tipster, who was champion in 2014, also captured the wagering section with a healthy plus $1,093.24, clear of IRIE FM represented by last year’s champion tipster Howard Abrahams. As a result, Clarkie picked up another $20,000 for a grand total of $40,000 donated by the promoting company. He leads the competition with 46 wins, ahead of Jimmie (42), Howard Abrahams and Cable Sport Network (Francisco ‘Linky’ Mills) jointly in third on 41 wins each.
AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREPettersson scores another winner, Canucks beat KingsLos Angeles City Council A new kind of jail Sheriff Lee Baca wants $400 million to $800 million to build a new “state-of-the-art” jail to replace the aging Men’s Central Jail. Maybe the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors could just order Baca to get plans from Sheriff Joe Arpaio in Phoenix on how to build a new jail. Contact the military, order some “state-of-the-art” tents and chain-link fence, along with some pink jail outfits and plenty of peanut butter and bologna for “state-of-the-art” meals. So far this has worked fine for Arizona, with even the American Civil Liberties Union remaining quiet. Sheriff Arpaio said, “If the tents are good enough for our troops, they are good enough for the inmates.” There is plenty of vacant land in L.A. County to build this new jail at a savings of millions. How about that, Sheriff Baca? – Kevin Eliason Santa Clarita Higher standard Government workers are paid a higher wage and given more benefits because, we are told, they are the best of the best. These workers are so in demand that we have to pony up extra bucks to attract them. When some of these same employees break the law by using their position for financial gain, they are treated with kid gloves. Time and again we hear the a government employee is on “paid administrative leave” until the charges are sorted out against that person. Government employees are paid to a higher standard and should be held to a higher standard as well. Stealing from the government is stealing from the public. When government employees are found to have broken the law, they should immediately be taken off the payroll and prosecuted to the fullest extend of the law. They should also forfeit all pension and health-care benefits. The best of the best should suffer the best of the best of our laws. – Bill Merriman Tujunga School tragedy What is wrong with our school system these days? Recently one of Saugus High’s honor students was kicked out for not living in the area. She was a cheerleader and a straight-A student. Does the school board have nothing else to do than to listen to a very jealous cheerleader who wanted that girl out? The student spent all her savings on the uniforms and is so upset that the family is thinking of therapy. The girl lives in Aqua Dulce and now will have to go to Aqua Dulce High, which is a school that nobody should have to go to. Another great kid wasted by stupid rules. – Terese Manzano Santa Clarita An NFL slap The National Football League will allow a moment of silence for slain football player Sean Taylor this weekend, but can’t take a moment to play the national anthem to honor our brave men and women in the military during the Pittsburgh Steelers/Miami Dolphins football game because of corporate greed. This will not go unnoticed by our troops. This is just another slap at the brave men and women who are fighting and dying. – Jerry Pennington Van Nuys Believer replies Re “He’s changed” (Letters, Nov. 27): Maybe Morris Schorr believes God is untrustworthy because Schorr doesn’t believe in him. I have no problem with God. I’ll take him over anything else any day. Also, the motto “In God We Trust” is on the other side of the presidential coins. -Luella Noonan Burbank160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Re “…and phony charity” (Our opinions, Nov. 20): What the Daily News failed to report is that if I “reject” this raise (which I did not ask for), the money will not be disbursed into the city’s general fund, where it is sorely needed, but to my general office account. I redirected the money toward charitable organizations that could make good use of my contribution for their worthy causes. Yes, I benefit from the increase by a tax deduction and goodwill with my community. The charity will also benefit financially. There’s nothing “phony” about it. – Councilman Dennis P. Zine
DefinitionA charley horse is the common name for a muscle spasm. Muscle spasms can occur in any muscle in the body, but often happen in the leg. When a muscle is in spasm, it contracts without your control and does not relax.Alternative NamesMuscle spasmCauses, incidence, and risk factorsMuscle spasms often occur when a muscle is overused or injured. Things that might bring on a muscle spasm include:Exercising when you have not had enough fluids (youre dehydrated).Having low levels of minerals such as potassium or calcium.Some spasms occur because the nerve that connects to a muscle is irritated.One example is a herniated diskirritates thespinal nerves and causes pain and spasm in the back muscles. Spasms in the calf often occur while kicking during swimming. They can also happenat nightwhen you arein bed. Upper leg spasms are more common with running or jumping activities. Spasm in the neck (cervical spine) can be a sign of stress.SymptomsWhen a muscle goes into spasm it feels very tight. It is sometimes described as a knot. The pain can be severe.Signs and testsTo diagnose a spasm, your health care provider will look for tight or hard muscles that are very tender to the touch. There are no imaging studies or blood testsfor this condition. If the spasm is caused by nerve irritation, such as in the back, an MRI may be helpful to find the cause of the problem.TreatmentStop your activity and try stretching and massaging the affected muscle at the first sign of a spasm.advertisementHeat will relax the muscle at first. Ice may be helpful after the first spasm and when the pain has improved.If the muscle is still sore after heat and ice, you can usenonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicinesto help with pain. In more severe cases, your health care provider can prescribe antispasm medications.After you get treated, your health care provider should look for the cause of the spasm so that it doesnt recur. If an irritated nerve is involved, you might need physical therapy or even surgery.Drinking water or sports drinks when exercising can help ease cramps due to dehydration.If drinking water alone is not enough, salt tablets or sports drinks may help replace minerals in your body. Expectations (prognosis)Muscle spasms will get better with rest and time. The outlook is excellent for most people. Learning how to exercise properly can prevent spasms from occurring regularly. You might need other treatments if an irritated nerve caused the spasm. Results from these treatments can vary.Calling your health care providerCall your health care provider if:You have a muscle spasm with severe pain.You have weakness with your muscle spasm.Even if your spasms are not severe, your health care provider can help you change your exercise program to reduce the risk of spasms in the future.PreventionStretch to improve your flexibility.Change your workouts so that you are exercising within your ability.Drink plenty of fluids while exercising and increase your potassium intake. Orange juice and bananas are great sources of potassium.ReferencesBrinker MR, O’Connor DP, Almekinders LC, et al. Physiology of Injury to Musculoskeletal Structures: 1. Muscle and Tendon Injury. In: DeLee JC, Drez D Jr, Miller MD, eds. DeLee and Drez’s Orthopaedic Sports Medicine. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2010:chap 1, section A.Geiderman JM, Katz D. General principles of orthopedic injuries. In: Marx JA, Hockberger RS, Walls RM, et al, eds. Rosen’s Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2010:chap 46.Review Date:4/13/2013Reviewed By:Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director and Director of Didactic Curriculum, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington. Also reviewed by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, Bethanne Black, Stephanie Slon, and Nissi Wang.
Episode #61 – October 9, 2009 (Episode Length: 28 minutes, 58 seconds) http://itunes.hubspot.tv/ Headlines Marketing Takeaway , @ mvolpe Marketing Takeaway Doing It Right with www.HubSpot.tv FTC Confirms Bloggers Need Not Fear the $11,000 Fines Registration Link: – Your offline events can stimulate online conversation. gameplanhayden If PR Dead? The Debate Continues… — Details: and @ Download HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing University online training program Thepremise is simple: visitors “light” a candle and leave a message. 8599as of Thursday at 4PM – less than 48 hours after it went live Yahoo finally joins Google and stops using meta keywords for search Time 3:00-5:30pm Forum Fodder Location: Brogan Room at HubSpot HQ http://hubspotbook.eventbrite.com/ HuSpot TV Guest: Tim Hayden! Brian Halligan’s article: Is PR dead? Think about using in person events to enhance the online communications you are using for inbound marketing. in Austin, TX Announcement! First 50 people get a free book! FTC Regulates Endorsements and Reviews We Are Better Than This Closing Make great content, get more links, don’t sweat meta keywords. Date: October 16 Justin Goodman @electricmice: How to interact on Twitter: @ Originally published Oct 11, 2009 7:49:00 PM, updated July 04 2013 : Set your employees free! Encourage them to be content creators. Death to Meta Keywords! Doors open at 3:00pm. The show goes live at 4:00pm. Come meet Brian andDharmesh at the end of the show during the book signing. – Make sure your PR firm is doing more than SPAMing reporters with press releases. Yahoo Search No Longer Uses Meta Keywords Tag Technology, in which 54% of thesample of 1,400 CIOs of companies with 100 or more employees blockemployees from accessing any social media at work” Intro Inbound Marketing Book Launch Party at HubSpot TV : Be upfront and honest, and encourage your fans to do the same. “astudy released yesterday by Robert Half Perks: CEO of Marketing Takeaway: Subscribe in iTunes: Why the 54% of companies blocking access to social media should knock it off http://www.ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005endorsementguidesfnnotice.pdf IMU includes The Role of PR Firms in Social Media and Inbound Marketing in your tweet. Free Inbound Marketing University Online Training Program 54% of companies BLOCK social media If I have hundreds of landing pages, how should you incorporate them into your navigation? 11 free webinar classes and notesheets GamePlan Marketing Takeaway 2 Marketing Takewaway karenrubin “So,is pr dead? Well, the bad news is that as the game has beentraditionally played, it is probably dead or near dead. The good newsis that there is a major opportunity for new entrants and forwardthinking existing agencies to re-invent the industry and provide awhole new set of valuable businesses for their customers.” . The program drills into each component of inbound marketing and prepares you for the Inbound Marketing certification exam. Marketing Tip of the Week: FTC Cracks Down on Blogger Payola, Celebrity Tweets Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack
Photo courtesy of . Email marketing ROI? What email marketing ROI? wrong. You can put in the time and energy but still sligthly miss one or two essential things that are the difference between ho-hum and amazing results. Diagnosing the problem and correcting it can make a huge difference in your results. You’ve been blogging carefully away. You’re using your long-tail keyword phrases strategically in your blog titles. You’re linking to other pages on your website with keyword phrase anchor text. You have relevant calls to action at the end of each article, and you blog twice a week without fail. Why isn’t anyone subscribing to it? Why don’t you have any followers and only your mom has left a comment? Your blog is stuffed with sales content. You haven’t considered your prospects’ interests or needs, and you’re pretty much just tooting your own horn. just Your blog is a desolate, lonely place. These are only three examples of many. Have you ever seen inbound marketing go from just okay to terrific? How can we learn from your pain? You spend hours on each email marketing campaign you send. You are very carefully reusing old blog content to provide perfect value to your prospects (and you haven’t made the mistake in the last paragraph!). You have engaging subject lines and people actually click on some of the links in the email. But are you actually Do you have a stunning, shiny call to action button? Yes. Do you have a naked landing page with a short form and a sexy picture? Yes. So why aren’t you getting conversions? You don’t have a quick description of what people will get when they fill out the form, so instead of getting leads, you get bounces. getting something from your efforts? How can you justify the time you’re spending? By including calls to action. Give your recipients something to do or to get for free (via a landing page, of course), and you’ll discover that you’re getting a lot of response from leads you thought were ice cold. You’ll even discover that you can measure your ROI. You’re not getting leads. For example… Topics: Unless you’ve been living in a hole for a while (or this is your first visit to our blog), you may have noticed that we’re a bit, uh, enthusiastic about inbound marketing. And we give a ton of tips & advice to you about how to do it. What I’ve noticed, however, is that it’s easier than I expected to get inbound marketing Originally published Jun 10, 2010 3:00:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Jean-Etienne Minh-Duy Poirrier Blogging Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack
on the topic. Based on over 170,000 blog posts I’ve created a visualization of the best times and days to post for views, links and comments. Click on the image below to see it full-size. Originally published Dec 8, 2010 5:51:00 PM, updated October 18 2015 For more data like this, be sure to Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack . In working on the data for my big overarching post for ProBlogger Science of Blogging webinar tomorrow register for tomorrow’s webinar Over the past few years, I’ve researched and written a lot about the best time, and recently, I wrote a , one of the most important questions I could ask my data was “when is the best time to publish a blog post?”
Phil Simon joins us for another exciting episode of Inbound Now, HubSpot’s social media and inbound marketing podcast! Phil is the author of The Age of the Platform, The New Small, Why New Systems Fail, and The Next Wave of Technologies. He focuses on the intersection of people, management, and technology.In this episode, we chat about:The concept of building platforms and planksAdopting community and letting people develop on your platformLearning from the gang of four (Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google)How to compete against an entrenched platformTips on building your own platformEmerging platforms to keep an eye onGetting people to build on top of your platformThe future of where the platform is headed Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Oct 20, 2011 8:00:00 PM, updated July 03 2013 Check out other episodes of Inbound NowPlatforms and Planks”All platforms are not the same. The planks that I have in my platform, for example, are different than the planks that HubSpot has in its platform.”Your platform is your core business, and your planks are all the other elements and areas that lead back to your main platform. The more planks you have, the more powerful your platform becomes.It’s all about diversifying and not being afraid of failure.Adopting Community and Letting People Develop on Your Platform”You want people to take your product and services in different directions.”An example of this is Twitter and TweetDeck. Several months ago, Twitter bought TweetDeck — a company that took its API in an interesting direction.Learning From the Gang of Four”One of the bones of contention in a few of the interviews I’ve given is this notion that a small or medium sized company can’t learn something from Apple, Amazon, Facebook, and Google. I say yes it can.”There are lessons for mid-size companies to learn from the gang of four (Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google). Perhaps you can implement Google’s notion that engineers get to play around one day a week, or create your own app in the App Store.You can build your own platform, even if you’re just a company of one.Can You Compete Against an Entrenched Platform?”Look at Facebook. It was by no means the first social network. There was MySpace. There was Friendster. There was Classmates.com. But if you read an excellent book that I referenced in The Age of the Platform, in The Facebook Effect by David Kirkpatrick, he writes about how Mark Zuckerberg, back in 2000, 2001, was obsessed with speed.”Being first to market your product means nothing if you can’t support the volume and you can’t scale.On the flip side, there is something to be said for being first (you can build an online bookstore tomorrow, but it won’t overtake Amazon anytime soon). It’s just not always a given. It’s a competitive edge to be first, but it’s not a given that you’ll always be first (things go viral very quickly).Tips on Building a Platform”By building a platform and embracing this notion of ecosystems, you can increase the probability that when something happens, you can respond really quickly.”You can’t be afraid of experimentation or failure. Look at your platform, and see what planks make sense. For Phil, he runs a publishing company and he does speaking — so having a book and being active on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn make sense.You can’t predict the future, but you can be prepared to act.You want to make your own platform as easy as possible to navigate. Don’t spend the time and money integrating video into your website — be on YouTube and Vimeo. You can take advantage of other platforms by using them as planks of your own.Emerging Platforms”There’s no reason that the Gang of Four has a monopoly on platforms.”Twitter, believe it or not, could be considered an emerging platform. They’re not quite at the level of Facebook, in Phil’s opinion, but they’re getting there through partners in different ecosystems.WordPress is an emerging platform. A fraction of the top thousand websites are running on WordPress, and they have a whole community of developers and companies that take WordPress in different directions.There’s also Salesforce.com and Force.com. They’re trying to let people build bridges to and from data, giving them apps, etc.Getting People to Build on Top of Your Platform”If you look at what the Gang of Four does with marketing, I think it’s very different than traditional marketing. I would argue it’s not marketing to people and not marketing at people. You’re almost letting the users and the consumers market for you.”Some of the companies we’ve mentioned do traditional advertising. But the real value is from people evangelizing their platforms on their behalf.The Future of Platforms”I think that platforms will become more and more important. Technology keeps changing faster and faster. People are looking for convenience and the one-stop shopping.”Phil sees platforms becoming more important. But if companies don’t continue to change and evolve and embrace uncertainty and risk, they won’t be around.Connect With Phil OnlineYou can follow Phil on Twitter @PhilSimon and on his main site. Also, make sure to pick up his new book, The Age of the Platform. Inbound Marketing
Originally published Dec 13, 2011 5:30:00 PM, updated August 25 2017 Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Twitter Marketing Whether you’ve been using Twitter for a while or you’re just dipping your toe into those whale infested waters, there are several common Twitter mistakes that tons of people are making. These mistakes are easy to fix, but if you keep doing them, it will keep you from getting the most out of this platform as part of your inbound marketing strategy. And you don’t want that, right? Here are five common Twitter mistakes, and how to fix them.Click here to access a free Twitter for Businesses kit.1. Sending Sketchy Auto-DMsSeriously, people are still doing this! No matter how amazing the message is in your auto-direct message, if it is an auto-DM, especially if it comes right after someone follows you, it’s a huge faux pas. Don’t waste your time setting these impersonal messages up. Not for you, not for your client, not for your brand. It’s not a good look.How to fix it: Go to your account on Twitter.com, click Settings and then Connections. This will show you all the apps to which you are connected. Find out which app through which you are set up to auto-DM, and cancel it.2. Protecting Your TweetsFacebook, Google+, and LinkedIn have privacy settings that allow you to choose which information to share with certain groups of people. On Twitter, you gotta put it all out there. Well, if you want inbound marketing effectiveness you do. Twitter is different than these other social networking experiences that are based on networking with existing connections–people you know from high school, college, work, and the gym. Twitter is based on networking with people you don’t know. Talk to strangers. Put yourself out there. Make the most of Twitter by making new connections with an open account.How to fix it: Go to your account on Twitter.com, click Settings and go to Account. Unclick where is says Protect My Tweets.3. An Unbalanced Follower:Following RatioSome people may not admit it, but most people care about their follower number. And there’s no shame in that! The more followers you have, the more opportunities you have to share your content and increase your web presence. But if you are looking at someone’s profile for the first time and you see an unbalanced follower:following ratio, two thoughts might go through your mind:If someone is following tons of people with very few follow-backs: “How come no one is following this person back? This person must not be very interesting, or this person is just looking for followers. I won’t follow back either.”If someone isn’t following back anyone: “Ugh, this person is a Twitter snob! Not interested.”How to fix it: If you haven’t followed a lot of people out of concern for a cluttered stream, consider bucketing people into Lists to clean it up. If you are following too many people compared to the number of followers you have, audit your following list and unfollow those who aren’t providing interesting tweets. Going forward, always scan users’ tweets to see if they would be a good addition to your following list before clicking ‘follow.’4. WTF Are You Talking About?Some people treat Twitter like Facebook or an away message. Tweeting things like “At Foggy Goggles for Brit’s 21st! So excited!” or vague ramblings like “I can’t even believe what’s going on right now…” are not helpful. Your followers will get more value out of your tweets if your tweets are clear. The nice thing about Twitter is that you have the opportunity to be interactive with the thoughts you are sharing; this opportunity is lost with these exclusive tweets.How to fix it: All of these tweets are salvageable. If you want to tweet about Brit’s birthday, use a location app to check in to the Foggy Goggle, and use Brit’s and Foggy Goggle’s Twitter handles in the tweet. This tweet is now a communication with the bar, the bar’s patrons, and Brit’s circle of friends.Instead of “I can’t even believe what’s going on right now…” share a picture or a link to an article and be specific about what is actually going on. Tweeting “I can’t believe what’s going on in Walmart’s parking lot for Black Friday” with an accompanying picture gives your tweet context and a reason to click through to the content you’ve shared.5. @ Versus .@Only people that also follow whoever you are @replying can see that @reply. Sometimes, people will start a tweet with @ when it’s not intended to be an @reply, though. For example, if you tweeted ”@CNN’s coverage of unicorns is great!” only your followers that follow @CNN will see that tweet in their timeline.How to fix it: If you want everyone to see your tweet, use the .@ trick. Stick a period in front of the @ sign, and it’ll send the tweet into the main Twitter stream for all to enjoy.What major Twitter mistakes have you come across? Have you made any of the Twitter mistakes above?Image credit: n74jrw
Customer Retention Rate by Industry Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Customer Retention Why is Customer Retention Important? Topics: What’s the most effective way to grow a business?You might think that the answer is to sell to more customers, but that’s only one piece of the puzzle — in fact, it might not be the most important piece of the puzzle. That’s where customer retention comes in.Once you’ve created a killer product and have identified your target market, company growth can start taking off — and it’s important to dedicate just as many resources to retaining existing customers as to selling to new customers.And that’s what your customer success team is for — to help customers see value and achieve goals using your product or service. But there’s more to it than just answering their phone calls and helping them onboard with your software — it’s about creating a process from the very beginning that fosters communication, trust, and mutual growth.Start solving for the customer today with these 17 templates. Read this guide to learn all about customer retention — how to measure it, why it’s important, and how to foster it with every new customer you attract. Average Customer Retention Rate by Industry Retention Rate Formula Customer retention refers to the ability of a company to — you guessed it — retain customers. Customer retention is impacted by how many new customers are acquired, and how many existing customers churn — by canceling their subscription, not returning to buy, or closing a contract.Over the course of a given time period, customer retention is measured by customer retention rate — more on that below. Retention Rate Formula Customer Retention Definition Before you begin to even consider a retention strategy, you need to understand what your current customer retention rate is.You’ll first need to define a period of time — whether that’s quarterly or yearly. Then, follow this formula:Customer Retention Rate = ( (# Customers at End of Period – # Customers Acquired During Period) / # Customers at Start of Period) ) X 100For example: Imagine you start the year with 20 customers, gain five new customers in the first quarter, and have one customer churn.( (24 – 5) / 20 ) ) x 100 = 95% retentionHere’s another example: You have 44 customers, you gain 12 new customers, and 13 customers churn:( ( 43 – 12 ) / 44 ) x 100 = 70% retentionOnce you know your rate, you should consider doing an audit of your churned customers to determine similarities in reasons for leaving or types of customers that leave. You might find that customers with a certain budget or at a certain company size are more likely to churn than others. Consider if you can add qualifying questions to your sales process or revise your ideal buyer persona to better reflect the attributes of your most loyal customers.Why is customer retention important?Customer retention is important to any growing company because it measures not only how successful they are at acquiring new customers, but how successful they are at satisfying existing customers.It’s also easier and more cost-effective to retain customers than to acquire new ones, returning customers spend more and buy more often, and refer friends and family. Only a 5% increase in customer retention can increase company revenue by 25-95%.The numbers don’t lie: Retaining customers brings companies a ton of ROI.There are a few reasons why customer retention is critical to company growth and success:Affordability: It’s 5-25X more expensive to acquire a new customer than it is to retain an existing customer. (HBR)ROI: A 5% increase in customer retention can increase company revenue by 25-95%. (HBR)Loyalty: Retained customers buy more often and spend more than newer customers. They’ve learned the value of a product or service and keep coming back, again and again. (American Express)Referrals: Satisfied, loyal customers are more likely to sing a company’s praises and refer their friends and family — bringing in new customers, free of charge. (American Express)It might seem obvious — of course, companies should want to retain customers — but when companies start growing quickly and struggle to implement a solid customer support program, proactive customer support for existing customers can slip through the cracks. Average customer retention rate varies across industries. According to Mixpanel’s 2017 Product Benchmarks report, for most industries, the average customer retention rate was below 20%. In the media or finance industries, retention over 25% is considered above average, and in the SaaS industry, retention above 35 is considered above average. Customer Retention Definition But when companies dedicate time, resources, and creativity to improve customer retention, not only does it make customers happy, it brings the companies more success, too. We’ll review strategies that will help you improve your increase customer retention next.Customer Retention Management StrategiesBefore diving into these customer retention management strategies you may implement and experiment with, let’s answer an important question first:What is customer retention management? Customer retention management is the process of maintaining relationships with your current customers to delight them long after they purchase your product of service. It requires you to encourage these customers to remain loyal to your business, continue paying for your product or service, and become and remain your brand advocates. Who manages customer retention?Customer retention is typically managed by customer success. The role of this team is to work with and delight your customers throughout the duration of their relationship with your company (no matter how long or short this timeframe may be).Customer success teams should not only work directly with your customers to improve and maintain retention, but work with other teams within your organization to do so as well. For example, customer success should help teams like sales or customer service and support — roles that have the potential to directly impact retention — organize, manage, and improve all aspects of the customer experience. This way, you entire business works together towards consistently improving customer retention. Now, let’s look at those strategies to help you with customer retention management. 1. Highlight case studies during the sales process.A significant portion of the sales process should be focused on determining if your company and the prospect are the right fit — from both a relationship standpoint, and how you will work together.Share previous case studies that reveal your company’s style of communication and collaboration with customers and the results you achieved for customers. You could also share testimonials from current customers to really bring it home for them just how much you partner with them.It’s similar to researching any big buying decision. You want to know if and how it will work before you make a purchase. If the customer truly understands this, they will be more likely to properly set expectations and be happier with their experience once they sign on.2. Set expectations early and often.If you don’t set expectations and communicate these clearly, customers can easily become upset. They might believe you can deliver on certain results, while in reality, those results are only seen in month six or with additional initiatives and work input.In addition, your customers are coming from very different businesses. One customer might feel that your prices are high, and therefore, they expect an extremely high amount of expertise and “white glove” customer service, while for another customer, you might be one of many different company partners, and the customer cares more about your ability to collaborate than care for their brand.Understanding these points of view and communicating deadlines, progress toward goals, what’s included in a project, your process, your communication style, etc., is essential for making sure expectations are met. This, in turn, will keep customers happy with the relationship, longer.3. Communicate results on a regular basis.Customers are more likely to stay with your company if your product or service is delivering results and ROI for them. If a customer can point to the fact that your company has influenced or increased leads, MQLs, SQLs, lifetime value, their own customer retention, etc., then it will be much more difficult for the customer to say goodbye.That means you need a good system for tracking and reporting on the metrics that really matter to the customer, which should relate to the goals you established together. Be transparent about the activities you executed on last month, the results you saw, where you see opportunities for improvements, and what you will work on next month. In addition, use a project management tool so that the customer can easily see how far along the team is in a project.4. Create a roadmap for the future of the relationship.Many people compare the customer-company relationship to dating — and this isn’t that far off. And it’s especially true when you consider the lifecycle of dating. At some point, one person in the relationship wants to know that this is “going somewhere.” He or she wants to know what the “plan” for the future looks like.This desire to know that you are working toward a “next step” can also be applied to business relationships. It can be easy for the customer-company relationship to fall victim to routine — everything is going great, you know what type of work the customer wants (and will approve), and you understand what works to reach their goals. That gets boring quickly though, and it’s easy for the customer to wake up one day and realize how uninspired and unmotivated the company team is.Your customer success managers should create and revise on a regular basis a relationship roadmap. Build in steps for initiatives and projects that both parties can look to and be excited about the current and next stage of the relationship.5. Make memories around your shared successes.According to research, people remember negative events more vividly than positive ones. Even if there are more positive events overall, the bad occurrences may be the longest lasting memories — which makes customers more likely to share those negative events on social media, too.So customer success teams need to consider how they can create better, more memorable experiences around positives and successes. When something negative occurs — a goal or deadline is missed for example — the company team overly communicates, discusses plans for fixing the issue, and apologizes. But when something truly great happens, how much of an emphasis do you place on the event?6. Ask for feedback and act on this information.You can’t improve customer retention without first understanding why customers leave your company. Once you know the reasons and the correlating signs, you can work to prevent customer churn by proactively dealing with issues.Ask for regular feedback from the entire customer team, including the decision-maker. Use a customer feedback tool to track trends by either the customer or the individual. For example: By tracking by project, you can identify customer happiness trends and work to improve processes or ask for more qualitative feedback on what exactly is contributing to the fall in customer satisfaction.Being able to identify and address these issues as early as possible will help you to prevent customers from leaving you in the first place. The voice of the customer is a powerful customer retention tool — so use it.7. Map out a consistent customer experience.Consistency builds trust with customers. They know what to expect and can rely on your team to get the work done and deliver the results they need.Without this, most interactions are a surprise, and in reality, customers don’t like surprises — even if they say they want to partner with a more “innovative, fun, risk-taking company.”Build out processes for onboarding new customers and kickoff meetings to create a smooth customer experience. Examples include setting agendas for meetings and building workflows around projects and sharing these with customers.By having a process for each of these activities, your team will be more efficient and customers will gain insight into what needs to be done, and when.8. Create a customer relationship marketing strategy.Have you considered what the communication from your company looks like once a customer signs on? Yes, she emails and works with her customer success manager, but how often does she hear from the new business director who convinced her to buy from you?Think about creating a newsletter sent from the company CEO for monthly or quarterly check-ins. Consider any education or training needs of the customer you should address. Come up with interesting, light touch ways to continue to build up the credibility of your company’s brand with the customer.9. Keep a record of communication and any past problems.Your company’s culture, leadership, and business practices all contribute to retention, but another way to prevent disruption in changes in personnel is by adopting a CRM where you can store notes from meetings and phone calls, ongoing issues, personal preferences of the customers, etc.With detailed notes and a complete history of the relationship recorded, a new customer success manager will be ready to be a true authority for the customer much more quickly.10. Make sure that the customer has a relationship with the entire team.Typically, customers mainly communicate with their primary customer success manager. These individuals form a bond during hundreds of meetings, phone calls, and emails. They know each other’s favorite restaurants, what sports their kids’ play, and other seemingly inconsequential details.But change puts these relationships at risk — and, in turn, your company’s customer retention rate. If the customer success manager leaves or is promoted, the relationship is at risk. If the relationship is extremely friendly, the customer might not be happy with anyone else. The bottom line is, if the customer’s sole connection to the company is based on one relationship, there’s a risk of churn during periods of employee turnover — a natural part of professional development within an organization that customers just aren’t always privy to.This is a risky place to be in terms of retention, so your company needs to make it a goal that customers build relationships with multiple members of the team for cases like these. Send the customer pictures of the entire team working on the latest project, or whenever there is a customer lunch, make sure there is another member of the team present.11. Use reciprocity to increase loyalty.Reciprocity is a social construct that has been found to increase loyalty. Acts of kindness create a feeling of obligation in the person who instinctively wants to repay the kindness.There are two types of reciprocity: surprise and trumpeted. Both of these can be used in customer service to increase loyalty.Surprise reciprocity is obviously a surprise gift or gesture. An example of this would be when your company sends over tickets for a game the day of or when a goal is achieved earlier than anticipated.Trumpeted reciprocity is when the person giving or doing something beneficial does so in a way that reveals that they are going above and beyond. It doesn’t mean you document and put all the great things you do in a monthly report, but it is obvious to the customer that what you are doing is outside the normal scope of the relationship. This could be as simple as taking behind-the-scenes photos at a video shoot and packaging them in a memorable way as a gift for the customer’s team.12. Build a customer loyalty program.One of the wisest ways to foster customer loyalty and retention is by providing even more value to them — and this can take the form of a customer loyalty or rewards program.User-generated content, loyalty bonuses, gamification, and rewards for customer referrals are simple customer retention tools that can go a long way towards fostering loyalty — read about more examples of successful customer loyalty programs in this blog post.13. Empower customers with the tools they need to succeed. Nobody likes to wait around for support or assistance. Nobody likes to sit around searching how to accomplish specific tasks on their own either. So, instead of creating long customer support and service waits for your customers (and creating more work for your support team), empower them with the tools and resources they need to succeed.There’s a wide range of ways you can empower your customers to help themselves and find the support they need individually. To do this, you might send emails or newsletters with tutorials that cover details about your company or your product/ service’s newest features. You may also share a list of your blog articles to help them accomplish their specific business goals. Improve Your Customer RetentionReady to get started making your customers happy to improve your company’s outcomes? Follow the customer retention management strategies we covered and consistently keep track of your business’s retention rates to keep an eye on how you’re doing. You can also read more about how real brands are using these customer retention strategies here.Editor’s note: This post was originally published in November, 2018 and has been updated for comprehensiveness. Originally published Oct 23, 2019 2:03:00 PM, updated October 30 2019 Customer retention is the ability of a company to retain its customers over a period of time. Customer retention a percentage that measures how many customers a company keeps at the end of a set time period, and the number impacted by the number of new customers acquired and the number of customers who churn. Customer retention rate is calculated using the following formula: Customer Retention Rate = ((# Customers at End of Period – # Customers Acquired During Period) / # Customers at Start of Period) X 100 Customer Retention Management Strategies
Originally published Oct 28, 2015 6:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Topics: Have you ever watched a movie where you find yourself really rooting for the main character? How about when young Forrest Gump breaks free of his leg braces and escapes the bullies on bikes?It’s hard not to let out a little, “Run, Forrest, run,” while you’re watching it, right?Likeable people tend to have that effect on us. From the way they respond to situations to the way in which they carry themselves, they make it easy for us to respect and appreciate them. They make us want to be on their team. In the workplace, likeability is incredibly important. Whether you’re managing a group of people or looking to work your way up through the ranks, your ability to form positive relationships will make it that much easier. Want to be more likeable? Try these seven things today.7 Little Ways to Be More Likeable1) Remember people’s names (and use them).”I’m horrible with names.”It’s a phrase we’ve all heard — or used ourselves — a million times. Trouble is, this often signals to people that you simply don’t care. Considering the value of introductions in the world of business — it’s a starting point for turning strangers into acquaintances, and acquaintances into customers — this is a habit worth shaking. So while there are a number of factors that could be preventing you from registering and remembering someone’s name upon meeting them, here are some of our favorite tricks for combatting them:Repeat it. Ever play the “name game” in school? The one where you say your name and then recall the names of those who went before you? Studies show that students can recall 75% of their classmates’ names after participating in the game for just 30 minutes. Point being, try repeating the name immediately after the person tells you to make it stick. Make a connection. When it comes to new information, research has shown that our ability to store information in our long-term memory is influenced by the connections we’re able — or unable — to make to that information. So whether the person you just met has the same name as your college roommate or sounds like the name of your favorite TV show character, making an effort to draw a parallel will help you in the long run.Offer an introduction. Networking your way around a room? It’s easy to become overwhelmed when you’re meeting a bunch of people at once. Before you let someone’s name slip away from you, make it a point to introduce them to one of your friends or other new acquaintances, advises Credit Donkey’s Cassy Parker. 2) Mind your mobile manners.Have you ever seen the video of the Chicago Bull’s mascot pouring a drink over a fan’s head who was too distracted by his phone to kiss his girlfriend on the kiss cam? What a jerk, right?Point being, likeability has a lot to do with the interactions people have — or don’t have — with you. If you’re one of those people who treats their phone like a third arm, it’s likely that you’re closing yourself off from engaging in a lot of those meaningful interactions. So while it may be tempting to Instagram your lunch when you’re out with friend of colleague, pulling out your phone isn’t always appropriate. In fact, 88% of people feel that whipping out your phone at the table is generally not a “cool” thing to do, according to a study from Pew Research. In an effort to strengthen the relationships in your life, try being more present.3) Be consistent.Think about your favorite restaurant for a minute. I’m willing to bet that you frequent it so often because you trust that you’re going to have a great meal. In other words, your loyalty is a direct reflection of the restaurant’s ability to deliver a consistent experience, right?As humans, we have a need for internal consistency. We want our attitudes, ideas, and beliefs to align and make sense. Therefore, when it comes time to make a judgment call about someone’s character, we aim to identify that sense of dependability. You see, consistency provides a sense of comfort. When we see someone deliver great work or a positive attitude day after day, it becomes easier for us to trust them. This is something that both management and potential customers look for when determining who they want to do business with. 4) Ask questions of others.Ever been trapped in a one-sided conversation at a networking event? You know the other persons’ life story — how many kids they have, where they vacationed on their honeymoon, what type of car they drive — and yet, they haven’t asked you a single question about yourself. How rude. Becoming more likeable relies heavily on your ability to make connections with people. However, in order to do so, the conversation needs to lend itself to a little give and take.Need help coming up with a few go-to ice breakers? Check out this awesome list of conversation starters to try out at your next networking event. 5) Smile more.”If you see a friend without a smile, give them one of yours.”This was my mom’s high school yearbook quote, and a valuable piece of advice for anyone looking to build positive relationships with others. This is because our emotional expressions, while often overlooked, are used by those around us to build perceptions.In fact, according to a study from Penn State University, people who smile appear more likeable, courteous, and competent. If that’s not reason enough to smile, two Swedish studies from 2002 and 2011 confirmed that other people’s smiles suppress the control we usually have over our facial muscles, causing us to smile. Talk about insta-likeability …6) Do good deeds. When’s the last time you did something nice for someone? Was it unsolicited? Psychologist Sonja Lyubomirsky asked students to carry out five weekly “random acts of kindness.” These acts could include anything from helping out a friend with a project to buying a meal for someone less fortunate. At the conclusion of the study, Lyubomirsky found that students reported higher levels of happiness than the control group. The lesson? Good deeds influence our well being. They make us happy. And happiness is contagious. “There are a lot of positive social consequences to being kind: other people appreciate you, they’re grateful, and they might reciprocate,” explains Lyubomirsky. Need some inspiration? Here are a few “random acts of kindness” you can carry out in your office:Buy the person that sits next to you a coffeeSend positive feedback to a team member Leave cookies in the kitchen Tape an inspirational quote to the mirror in the bathroomWrite an appreciative note for the receptionistGive someone a compliment in the elevator 7) Express empathy. Our ability to detect, understand, and feel another’s emotions plays a huge part in the way we form connections and build relationships. It also influences the way people perceive us — both personally and professionally. A workplace study conducted by the Center for Creatively Leadership took a look at the role of empathy in the professional lives of 6,731 leaders from 38 countries. The results revealed that not only was empathy positively related to job performance, but also that managers who expressed empathy towards their reports were viewed as better performers as well. If nothing else, this study proves that empathy is something we value, as it’s rooted in understanding. And the more we understand one another, the easier it is to relate and communicate.If empathy is something you struggle with, try to keep these tips in mind:Listen. Before you chime in, allow the other person to make their point entirely. Sometimes we only hear half the story, which causes us to act or respond in a way that doesn’t make sense.Keep an open mind. Rather than concerning yourself with always being right, do your best to remove any bias. This will help you see the situation for what it is, not what it isn’t.Ask questions. If you don’t fully understand where someone is coming from, ask them to clarify. Sometimes empathy can be achieved through asking questions that reveal more context. What are some other things that likeable people do? Let us know in the comments section below. Marketing Psychology Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack