Use It or Lose It! – How to Show Your Customers You Don’t Care

Use It or Lose It!

That was the basis of a marketing email received a couple of days ago from a software company.

I was testing out the free version of the software and as I had not logged in for 60 days they wanted to free up space on their server. If I did not login in the next 3 days the account would be deleted and all the information I had put in.

It was by chance I went into this email account that I use for downloads because it is one that is only looked at perhaps once every 2 weeks.

In a recent article on Small Business Trends by Diane Helbig, “Sixty Eight Percent Is Yours To Keep,” she writes about the importance of customers feeling valued and appreciated.

Although you may be inclined to say that of course you value current and potential customers, I think most of us have been a little indifferent at times for a variety of reasons. Not that it was deliberate of course, but it happens as we are not perfect.

The unfortunate part is the customer only sees a lack of caring. And, as Diane correctly said, we want to feel appreciated.

Here are 3 marketing lessons from this experience:

Changing the Rules

There was nothing in the terms about conditions relating to the free version of the software. If anything the company was too generous with the free version. This may have been why they changed the rules.

If you decide to change the rules that affect your current customers, then ease them into it rather than give them a nasty surprise.

Follow Up

This has been written about many times and by many people and is one of the reasons why customers can feel unappreciated.

This company has been around for a while and would (or should) know the areas customers may need assistance on or what the triggers to get them to upgrade are.

If you want customers to upgrade or buy more, etc., then you need to have a process in place. With the technology available today this is quite easy to do. Unless you keep the conversation going customers can get the feeling of not being appreciated.

Customer Value

From looking at their site this company is obviously having a big push to gain more customers and on the higher plans. That is why they needed to free up the server space.

Not all customers represent the same value to your business, however being indifferent to one group and chasing another is not the answer.

It is important to know the value of your customers to your business, such as their strategic value. Whilst they may not represent a lot in dollars they may in fact be important in terms of referrals or recommendation.

If you offer a low cost or free version of your products or services, remember the people who use these will think of themselves as your customers and expect you to treat them as such.

Over to you, what have you put in place to make sure customers feel appreciated even if they don’t spend a lot or just use a free version?


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