How entrepreneurs can attract and retain loyal customers – David Avrin

In the wake of the pandemic, customers have become accustomed to convenience. However, not all businesses have adapted to this trend. In the latest episode of The Small Business Show, David Avrin, author, keynote speaker, and chairman of The Sounding Board, joins us to discuss how small businesses and entrepreneurs can gain a better understanding of their clients.

Avrin’s line of work is simple: to help organizations better understand and connect with their changing customers. Early in his career, he focused on branding and marketing. Back then, branding was centered around how entrepreneurs could more effectively describe what they did and how they crafted the words and imagery that differentiated them from the competition. Yet, with many changes in buying behavior and social media, branding has changed.

Key Takeaways:

1. Avrin emphasizes that firms looking to attract more consumers must understand that customers have more options than ever. The pandemic has, for the most part, accelerated the changes he has observed in the market. “What I’m seeing today is that it is more credible for others to write or review your brand rather than you describe your brand yourself,” says Avrin. 

2. Thus, he counsels business owners to consider the following when seeking consumers: Who are the clients with resources? Take a step back and evaluate how accessible your business is to work with and reimagine what your customers’ journey should be. Ultimately, “never take your eye off the ball,” be the greatest at what you do, and be preferable to consumers.

3. From the customer’s perspective, business-to-business (B2B) transactions typically start at the point of sale. However, from a business perspective, logistics, tracking, and shipping go on behind the scenes. Thus, the B2B experience for customers has become more profound due to how they receive and order, the transparency it provides, and the ability to track goods. The plague of convenience has led customers to anticipate simplicity, adaptability, and speed. 

4. The key to retaining loyal customers, according to Avrin:

  1. Be more accommodating. 
  2. Say yes more.
  3. Walk alongside the consumers on their journeys. 

However, in the event saying no is inevitable, Avrin advises entrepreneurs to say, “Let me tell you what I can do,” instead.

5. If businesses can expedite, reduce, or simplify the friction in their customers’ process, they become competitively advantageous. Avrin notes, “When businesses set their competitive advantage towards price, then it’s a race to the bottom, and you’ll have to make it up in volume.”

“Today, branding is less about complacency, but more about who is preferable.” – David Avrin