This article is part of the school of coworking course through Archie. Make sure to check out the other articles to learn more about how to start a coworking space business.?
Maybe you’ve heard before that in a business it’s easier to maintain the clients you already have than try to get new ones. If you haven’t then it might come as a shock to you that acquiring new clients is much harder than just keeping the ones you have. In fact, increasing customer retention by only 5% also increases profits by 25% to 95%.
For a coworking space, this is crucial and important, as having loyal customers will be the driving factor of your success. You want your profits to increase marginally, which is why it’s important to take care of your clients and build trust and loyalty with them. In this article, we will discuss how you can retain the clients you have in your coworking space in a few easy steps.
Step 1: Find your target audience
When thinking about your coworking space, it might seem natural to simply open up a space and try to get anyone to come and join, but a good strategy in the coworking space business is to instead focus on one target audience and cater your space to them. Your target audience can be freelancers, startups, SMEs, remote workers, and much more.
As a business owner, you will want to do everything in your power to please all your clients, and while that could happen, chances are it’ll be very hard to have everyone be 100% happy with your space. Instead, you should focus on doing what is best for your largest clientele.
Once you’ve identified your target audience, try to make adjustments according to their needs. If your target audience is startups then you will want to make sure that you have the right facilities for them, like enough offices for their teammates, a really good WiFi connection, and high-tech equipment that they can use for their business. Make sure to observe and do research on your audience and find out what their needs are in order to provide them with the best service possible.
Step 2: Make a good first impression
This goes without saying, but first impressions matter. Your clients are your priority in your business, and you want them to feel welcomed and taken care of.
One thing you need to nail down is how you approach new clients and how you welcome them into your coworking space. If you don’t already have a process for this, you will want to create one. Whether it’s you or your community manager who takes care of new clients, you have to make sure you have a solid onboarding plan set for welcoming new members.
A great onboarding process can improve employee retention by 82%. This is why you have to be careful to make the most out of the process and make sure that your customers stick around afterwards.
What does a good onboarding experience look like?
- Be kind and friendly to your customers: One of the biggest mistakes people make in their onboarding process is how they approach their customers. Of course, you want to maintain professionalism and explain everything thoroughly, however, you also want to be a person that they feel comfortable and happy around.
- Elaborate on your space and explain all the benefits: Tell them why your space is so great. Here is where you want to tell them about all the great features your coworking space has. Try not to sound too pushy, and just explain why your space has what they need with professionalism and politeness.
- Give them a tour of your space: Take them on a tour of your space where you can show them everything you talked about, and give them a taste of what it’s like to actually be in your coworking space.
- Introduce them to other members: What better way to show clients how fantastic your space is than to have some of your existing clients attest for you. Another great benefit to this is that you would be seen as a community-friendly coworking space, which many people value.
Now that you know how to give your clients a great onboarding experience, make one according to your space and focus on making a great first impression.
Step 3: Wow them with your services
Another basic thing that you need to do to retain your clients, is to provide them with intriguing amenities and member-only perks. This may sound expensive and tedious, but it doesn’t have to be. If you’re smart about how you conduct your business and funds, then you can get a great return on whatever you invest.
People love to feel special and a great way to make your members feel that way is to offer them complementary products or services right in your coworking space. An example of what this might look like is to have free breakfast once or twice a week. It doesn’t need to be elaborate, a few bagels, pastries, and some orange juice will be enough to make your clients excited.
Besides complementary products and services, you will want to make sure your coworking space is stocked with good quality basics that people will enjoy and use. Things like comfortable, ergonomic furniture and stable WiFi are important if you want to keep your clients. No one will stick around to a space that can’t provide a stable WiFi connection. Make sure your coworking space is filled with great basics that will keep your clients staying.
Step 4: Create a community for your members
Building a community is important when it comes to retaining clients. Community building is an aspect of your business you should be focusing on if you’d like your members to get to know each other and build relationships together.
Relationships are a driving factor for many people, especially since the world shifted due to the pandemic. Many people are now looking for new ways to build connections, and you can use this to your advantage to retain your clients by providing them with opportunities to build connections with each other and with you.
If you have a community manager, assign them to the job of keeping all aspects of community building in check. Make sure your members are engaged with each other and with the community manager and yourself. This will build further trust, and loyalty, and will make you stand out from your competitors. You may find yourself with members whose biggest reason for staying in your space is the community they’ve found themselves in.
Making sure you have a community-building strategy is important if you want to maximize your chances of retaining your customers. If you haven’t already, be sure to check out our other article “How to Build a Community in your Coworking Space” to learn the best way to do so.
Step 5: Ask for their feedback and adjust accordingly
Clients love to feel like they are heard. There’s no way to know what your clients are thinking without actually asking them. It might be easier to just guess or even ignore some potential suggestions, but it’s important to keep customer satisfaction high. After all, you are building a space for your clients, so you want to do your best in keeping them happy.
The demands of your coworking space will change with time, so it’s critical for you to maintain knowledge of everything that needs to change and be updated. In order to do that you’ll need to consistently ask for feedback from your clients.
Here is a guide to surveying your clients:
Step 1: Define your survey’s purpose
- Figure out what you want to find out from your clients
Step 2: Come up with questions
- Come up with a few questions to ask your clients about your coworking space
- Remember to keep it short
- Only ask questions that are necessary and about things you would like to know
- Keep them open-ended. This will give your clients more room to explain their thoughts
Step 3: Create a survey
- The easiest way to conduct a survey is to use Google Forms
- Other options include Survey Monkey, Typeform, or Jotform
Step 4: Ask at the right time:
- Marketing statistics say putting out your survey on Tuesdays or Thursdays is the best option
- As for times, 8 am, 1 pm and 4 pm are your best bet
- Don’t send out your survey on weekends
Step 5: Take action
- Once you have your results, think about everything you can do to improve and do it
- Your clients will be more satisfied if they feel their opinion has been heard
Remember to not do this too often, but to do it regularly. It’s important that you implement a customer feedback loop so that you can keep up to date.
Step 6: Email Marketing
When thinking of keeping your clients engaged with your space, a good idea might be to start an email newsletter. This is something you can do weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly.
This is a great cost-effective way to keep your customers in the loop. You can also take advantage of email automation and send them out that way instead of manually, which will save you a lot of time and effort.
In your newsletter include updates about your space, new amenities, events coming up, and even any promotions you could give your clients. If you do this, people will get very excited when receiving it. Don’t forget to get creative and if there is something in your newsletter you would like to include find a way to do so.
Newsletters are a great way for your customers to be reminded of your brand when they check their inboxes.
Customer retention is a very critical component of your coworking space business. Without being able to retain your clients, your coworking space may suffer terrible losses. It’s important to always try to build a connection with your clients and cultivate and nurture your relationship with them by keeping customer satisfaction high. Making sure all their needs are met will guarantee you a loyal and reliable clientele, and a successful business.
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