How do you reduce churn and improve client retention? Use our client retention model.

We have found that focusing on a world-class onboarding system, effective communication, and overall client success management ensures happier clients and less turnover.

If you’re struggling with clients canceling or pausing services, this strategy will be a game-changer for you and your digital marketing agency.

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:30] The Client Retention Maximization Model
  • [4:02] Pillar #1: Kickoff with a bang and appreciation
  • [8:47] Pillar #2: Set up an effective communication flow
  • [12:22] Pillar #3: Implement client success management

Pillar #1: Kickoff with a bang and appreciation

What happens in the first 24 hours sets the pace for the entire business relationship. When we crafted a world-class onboarding experience, everything changed. So what does it take?

First, focus on appreciation. Appreciation is one of the most overlooked aspects of running an agency. If you drop a welcome basket in the mail with a personalized note, it will stand out. You’re not only creating an experience but it looks professional, too.

Secondly, the way you collect data needs to be seamless. When we send someone a survey to get this information, we’re often met with radio silence, right? Engineer a process that helps you collect that information quickly and easily.

Lastly, you need to engineer quick wins. Clients leave when they pay you, weeks and months pass, and they’re not seeing increased leads or sales. Building a website and ranking keywords takes time. So you need to find strategic ways to generate tangible results in their first seven days. Listen to learn what we found works!

Pillar #2: Set up an effective communication rhythm

If you don’t have a great communication process in place, you’ll lose clients. The adage “no news is good news” isn’t how you want to run your business.

When clients sign up for a retainer-based service, they want communication. You need to map your communication process in advance. You want to reduce the amount of information that you share. You don’t need to share a ranking report, Google analytics, and activity reports. It’s too much. Instead, report what the client cares about:

  • What they spent
  • How many leads they generated
  • Their acreage cost per lead
  • The return on their investment

If you focus on those key details, it makes them feel like they’re getting great results.

Secondly, set up a great meeting rhythm. Your clients need more than automatic communication. Meet with the client monthly and cover a specific agenda. Report wins and tell them what’s coming up next.

Lastly, share the vision. The #1 reason a client leaves is perceived indifference. There’s a lot of competition in the space. Your client is likely getting contacted daily by someone promising better results. If they don’t feel like you’re on the cutting edge, they will go somewhere else.

What can you do to improve your client communication? 

Pillar #3: Implement client success management

When you grow and scale, you have to remove yourself from operations. You can’t be building websites, writing content, or managing projects. You have to recognize that you can’t handle every client relationship and start hiring account managers. If you don’t take a strategic approach to hiring and training account managers, you’ll be stuck.

You have to track your retention and churn. Most agencies don’t know what their retention rate is. But what you measure gets done and what you track improves.

You also need to know your key performance indicators (KPIs). Churn is a lagging indicator. Instead of focusing on churn, you need to track the KPIs that dictate improving retention, such as:

  • The percentage of clients meeting with you monthly
  • The percentage of clients who are getting an ROI
  • The percentage of clients who are engaged in the process

Lastly, set up a traffic light system. If you have 100 clients, it’s hard to track who is happy and who has one foot out the door. Take your clients and place them in a spreadsheet:

  • Red = They’re upset and something isn’t going well
  • Yellow = There is an issue that needs to be addressed
  • Green = They’re happy and singing your praises

When you have a process in place to visually see where your clients are, you can better manage the yellow and red clients and get them back to green. A great client success process will improve retention.

Check out the resources below for a deep dive into client retention!

Resources & People Mentioned

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