By Kitty Ambers, CIC, CPIA, CISR, CPIW, Chief Growth Officer at AVYST

As insurance sales professionals, we have learned the impact of “The Loyalty Effect” on agency "The Loyalty Effect" Diagramprofitability. In his book, published by Harvard Business Review, author Fred Reichheld explains that generating new customers will cost your business five to 25 times the cost of retaining existing customers. Furthermore, if you can increase your customer retention by just 5%, you could see profits increase by 25% to 95%. That’s a compelling reason to consider saying “Thanks”!

During this season of gratitude and giving, consider starting the practice of setting aside both time and budget to express appreciation for the people responsible for your business success. Here are a few ideas:

The Team that Supports You

Richard Branson has famously said, “Take care of your employees, and they’ll take care of your business.” Expressing gratitude to your team members may be more difficult in a remote work environment, but a hand-written note (maybe with a gift card) can go a long way. Extend this beyond the holidays and make it a regular practice when someone goes above and beyond. Keep a stash of attractive note cards handy. Make sure you address the card to the employees’ home. Imagine the positive vibe that can come from a family celebrating the acknowledgement from the boss or a colleague for a job well done.

Another idea for showing appreciation to your team is to thank them publicly. Some people shy away from recognition, but a genuine “thank you” in front of peers, always feels good.

The Client Who Buys from You

Creating customer loyalty doesn’t happen by accident. With all the noise and competition in the insurance marketplace, you must show your current customers appreciation. Remember “The Loyalty Effect” statistics.

Sign that says "We "heart" our customersExpressing gratitude to customers is likely a part of your new customer onboarding process, but make sure that gratitude continues by sending personal notes, reaching out with a quick phone call, or including them in customer spotlight articles and blogs that get posted to social media. Helping your clients’ business grow by making referrals and posting positive reviews is always appreciated and often reciprocated.

In Closing

Employee loyalty leads to customer loyalty. Employees who feel appreciated work together more effectively and take better care of customers. Customers who feel appreciated are more likely to recommend you to others, leave a positive review and even pay a little more. Be intentional but not mechanical. Remember the words of Teddy Roosevelt, “people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”

Leave a comment sharing your ideas for giving thanks.

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