Social media can be a powerful tool to spread word of mouth about your business to potential new clients, but it can be an equally powerful way to get existing members to stay. It’s estimated that 78% of a business page’s Facebook fans are already customers, so your content on social media is a great place to speak directly to your current members and positively influence retention. How exactly can you do that? Try these four simple steps to leverage social media to increase retention for your business:

 

1). Be Easy to Find

According to the Harvard Business review, the number one factor in customer retention is reduction in customer effort. So, the less effort it takes for your customers to find you online, the more likely they are to be loyal to your studio. The easiest way to do this is staying consistent across platforms. If possible, make your username the same on each site, and make sure your pages are updated with your logo, current address, and contact information. Plus, according to The Social Media Examiner, the more high-quality followers and activity you have on your social media pages, the higher your pages will rank in Google searches -- thus making you even easier to find.

 

2). Listen

Social media is a conversation, so take the time to listen to your members. Is there a certain yoga class they really love? Do they have critical feedback about last week’s WOD? Your social pages are a prime location to gather feedback from your members. According to Twitter, customer service interactions via Twitter have increased by 250% in the past two years, so take the time to listen. Try logging onto your social pages once a day to interact with new comments or posts to your page, check for comments from members, and share any helpful feedback you see there with your team.

 

3). Actively Respond

Customer service is just as important online, so take the time to answer questions, take part in a conversation with your members, and craft a response to feedback. Show them that you’re listening with your response. If someone posts to your page saying they were unhappy with a class, empathize with their experience, explain why you do things they way you do, and let them know what steps you can take to make things right. Aspect Research has shown that addressing a complaint can increase customer advocacy by up to 25%, so it’s important to actively address any concerns from your members.
But, your online conversation shouldn’t be limited to addressing complaints -- engage your members, especially your most passionate members, in positive conversation. Your most passionate members can be your strongest brand advocates, spreading the word about your business to their friends, so get to know these people. If they comment on a recent Facebook post about your updated gym equipment, engage them in a conversation about it. Or, try tagging them in the comments for a post about their favorite cycling class. Knowing more about why these members love your business is great insight, and making them feel valued can increase the likelihood they’ll talk about your business with others.

 

4). Keep Them Engaged

Don’t wait for your members to start the conversation every time on your social media pages; be sure you’re regularly posting across your social sites to keep the conversation going. Three to five posts a week is a good number to aim for. Try creating a content calendar for your business, focusing on a balance between your studio’s goals for the month as well as the type of humor, questions, or motivational posts that will resonate with your members. These fun posts will showcase your personality and give members the chance to join in on the conversation, which creates the kind of connection that can lead to greater retention. Not sure where to start when it comes to a content calendar? Schedule a consultation with our team to learn more!

 

 

Nicole Gartside, Social Media Strategist at SWETI Services

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