Did you know that determining customer churn is vital for businesses that want to grow?
Instagram is a perfect example of this.
It started as a location-based app called ‘Burbn’ that allowed you to ‘check-in’ to places, earn points for hanging out and post pictures. Sounds similar to what it is today, minus one thing… it had massive churn!
In this blog, learn what customer churn is and how you can reduce it.
What is Customer Churn?
Customer churn is calculating the percentage of customers that stopped using your product or service during a specific period of time.
Is your heart starting to palpitate because we mentioned the need for math? Stay calm, it’s not complicated.
Churn can be calculated by establishing how many customers you had at the beginning of a time period and dividing it by the number you lost.
An example would be...you started with 100 customers Jan 1, 2020 and by Feb 1, 2020 you had 75 customers. Your churn rate would be 1.33 or 33%.
When Instagram found out they had a customer churn problem, they turned to their developers to analyze data and determine how their users were actually using the app. Research confirmed that no-one was using the check-in feature, they were only posting pictures. The decision was then made to scrap the feature not being used and the rest is history.
How To Fight Customer Churn
Managing and learning how to reduce churn will be an ongoing task throughout your company’s existence.
So what's the secret sauce to discovering it, managing it and slowly chipping away at it so your business grows?
- Systematic, defined retention processes that allow you to find and implement tactics to keep it low.
If you don’t already have solid processes put it place, that’s where working with a processed-focused, RevOps agency might come in handy. To learn more about RevOps, check out our recent post called, ‘What Is RevOps?’
5 Steps To Reducing Churn Now
Since retention is what you are looking to achieve, your churn processes will be centered around this idea of ‘retaining customers’.
Below are 5 ways that will intelligently reduce churn over time.
- Define your goals
- Ask the right questions
- Develop your hypothesis
- Test & analyze your ideas
- Refine, reject, repeat
1) Define Goals
Most likely you have overall business goals and then individual goals for each team or department so they know what success looks like.
The same will be true for your churn reducing process goals.
Since we have been talking about retention, this will need to be quantified and you can think of HubSpot’s SMART goal concept as a great way to develop this:
An example might be:
- Reduce churn from product X by 25% by changing feature X by 3rd quarter - September 1, 2020.
Overall, setting goals allows you to measure your progress and refine it as needed. This also helps everyone within the company know what they are aiming towards, a necessity to accomplishing growth.
2) Ask The Right Questions
After you’ve set your goals, you’ll want to start to think about various questions to ask yourself and your team about how you can reduce churn.
These questions might be developed based on current problems or challenges that customers have expressed, internal data and web analytics, surveys, feedback, user-testing, and what your competition and others in the industry are doing.
Questions should be as specific as possible, actionable and things you can effectively measure and test to determine validity.
Try to come up with various scenarios for the short and long term, various customer segments, and more.
3) Develop Your Hypothesis
You might be thinking…why do I need to develop an hypothesis?
Well this will help you think about the questions you are asking in more depth and help you brainstorm possible impacts that you hadn’t thought of before.
This exercise can ultimately help you understand your choices and then assist with things like:
- Decision making
- Prioritizing ideas
- Narrowing down your questions and experiments
- Resources needed
- Probability of success
*Keep in mind, it might be difficult in the beginning to determine things like impacts and resources and they are often under and over-estimated. Over time, with more data and continued refinement, these will get easier and more accurate.
4) Test & Analyze Your Ideas
At this stage, you want to get something started ASAP.
Experiments are exactly that: A procedure undertaken to make a discovery, test a hypothesis, or demonstrate a known fact. So, if you don’t get it 100% right the first time, it’s ok!
Overthinking and delaying experiments can cause you to lose more churn in the long run. It's better to try something and fail because then you learn from your mistake and MOVE ON.
Digital analytics are vital to support your testing and are going to be one of the main ways you determine if something is working and how customers are interacting with it.
Remember data justifies your hypothesis and experiments.
5) Refine, Reject, Repeat
You can think of this final stage as the beginning to the next, since the journey to reducing customer churn never really ends.
Experiments provide learnings that you will reject and refine so you can start the process over with more success each time.
You will want to document what you do and your results in each step, and noting if you are improving over time is key.
Examples of what you might analyze here could be:
- Changes in technology
- New pricing structures
- New automation implemented
- Refinement of processes
- Reduction of resources
- New content distribution and/or promotion strategies
- Increases in conversion and retention rates
Finally, you’ll want to determine if you hit your goals and why or why not?
This is a great way to learn more about your products, services, customers, teams, and the overall company.
This concludes our post on, ‘5 Innovative Ways To Reduce Customer Churn Now’. If you like this post, be sure to comment below and share it.
If you have any questions about how to develop your customer churn processes, feel free to book a complimentary chat with our RevOps experts today.