I was talking to a client the other day, that had what I would call a significant untapped database.  What I mean by this is that they had a lot of data from lapsed customers that had bought products from them in the past that they hadn’t since been in touch with.

I always say it’s much easier to retain a customer than find a new one.  It’s easier to get more value from an existing customer than to find a new one who is happy to spend that same amount.  This is because an existing or lapsed customer (one that has bought from you before) already knows, likes and trusts you and therefore it should be a much easier sell.

When thinking about getting in touch with lapsed customers make sure that you really are delivering them something of value.  Don’t just start spamming them with offers and news about your company and other emails that add no value.

Have a look at what they purchased, when they purchased it and see if you can create a bespoke ‘come back’ offer.  Maybe they bought a voucher for someone as a gift for a birthday, maybe they booked a spa treatment as a treat for an anniversary.  Be very targeted about getting back in touch, see where you can add value.

If you have a new product or service that you think that they might be interested in, then that would be a good reason to get in touch (also adding in a % discount code or a value add to say welcome back). If you have something of value that you could send them such as a report, piece of research, whitepaper or lead magnet (top 10 XXX) that you think would be of value then get in touch with them about that too.

An ‘untapped database’ has the potential to generate a huge amount of revenue if you know what to do.  Marketing is all about empathy. Putting yourself in the shoes of your customers. How could you really surprise and delight them if you are going to get in touch with them again out of the blue?  What could you do that would make them feel great about your company? What can you do so that you are not just spamming them and adding to the stress of an already overloaded email inbox?

Another thing to think about is setting up a campaign so that going forward you continue to communicate with your previous customers so that you don’t have this ’untapped database’ that no-one has been in touch with.  Think about putting in place a process whereby you continually add value.

There are very few emails that we get from companies that actually are of any interest or add much value.  When I look through my email inbox most are a total waste of time. Only send emails if you are adding value – inspiring, value and engaging emails that really have your customer at heart.  It’s not about constantly sending out promotional emails. No one is really interested in your company news. They are getting bombarded left, right and centre by content.

You need to have a real think about what is the best way to communicate with your lapsed customers – how would they want to hear from you (post, phone call, email), how often would they want to hear from you?  How can you add value at every step of the way so that it actually puts a massive smile on their face when they do hear from you. Put yourself in your customer shoes and think about how you can do this with the customer at the core.