How to Manage Your Client Database

It costs 6 to 15 times as much to sell something to a new customer than to an existing customer!

To this end you must set up your own "VIP/Loyalty/Reward Club."

To have your club run smoothly and effectively, you will need to develop a comprehensive customer/prospect database system.

You must organize your POS Supplier to get this going for you. Most POS suppliers these days have quite good CRM (Customer Relationship Management) solutions built into their software.

This means you will need to input and maintain contact with, and data on every prospect, and customer that you have contact with - and especially the ones on your Reward/loyalty Club.

Once it is up and running it is fairly easy and simple to maintain. Remember - the POS program must work for you, not you for it.

Your database program will need to be able to:

client database

1. Keep customer information such as name, address, email etc (must have a comments section in each customers file.).

2. Keep customers vital statistics such as correct number of reward points, disabilities/ailments, preferences, sizes, method of payment, concessions, preferences and so on.

3. Keep a record of past purchases by date, product and amount of dollars and accrued, current and used reward points.

4. Keep a customer status code and a record of past "contact" history.

5. Be able to be merged with emails, letters, Newsletters, SMS and faxes, with either single customers or group of customers, with out having to go to a great deal of trouble.

6. Manage future contacts as a reminder of future activities scheduled with customers.

7. To be able to schedule and automatically print or send emails, Newsletters or letters and SMS to customers in a scheduled time frame, depending on the type of customer.

8. Be able to manage marketing results, informing you of how each campaign worked or didn't work.

Remember you must measure everything. Otherwise you have no way of knowing what works and what doesnt.

You maybe wasting half your marketing dollars...

But you wont know which half!

Seems like a lot of hard work. But the benefits of a properly set up database system will reduce work load, and generally take care of itself with just a little bit of maintenance.

Once you have your database program properly set up and running, you must design a program of regular contact with your customer base.

This may be by e-mail, phone, mail, SMS or fax, but how ever it is, make sure that it is regular. This will be where the rewards of your work will be.

Once you have set this up, you will wonder why you hadn't done it ages ago.

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