How To Get 52% More Counter Customers WITHOUT Breaking The Bank

What can you do to get and keep counter customers?

Most dry cleaners—the average ones—keep 50% of those new customers that walk in their store to give them a try.

What if you could give them an experience they’ve never had before at a dry cleaner? What if you could WITHOUT that much time and money, get more of those counter customers to stay?

I’ve got an idea for you.

I call it my…6-Step Follow Up Plan. If you do just Step #1, you will see a very noticeable increase in the counter customers that stick with you.

Step #1: Send A Handwritten Thank You Note

The average number of new counter customers that used his dry cleaner a second and third time is 51% according to member David Whitehurst. But, he said that he got that number up to 76% by sending out a hand-written thank you notes and doing a few other tasks.

If you would like the EXACT hand-written thank you notes you should be using, go to:

What do you do now to ensure that your counter customers will come back?

If you’re like most cleaners, you smile, give them good customer service and you make sure that your quality is good.

That’s NOT good enough!

*Do you send them a thank you note thanking them coming in and giving your dry cleaning service a try?

• Do you collect their email address so that you can also send them an email thanking them?

• Do you give them a coupon for a percentage off to entice them to come back quickly?

• Do you collect their email so that you can sell them other products and services?

• Do you get their mobile number so that you can text them with offers?

• Do you send a newsletter designed to get referrals and keeping them coming back?

• Do you robo-call them to get them back into your plant?

• Do you have an orchestrated referral program?

Like I said, most dry cleaners don’t do any of these things.

If I were to pick one thing to do, I’d mail out a hand written thank you note and some kind of a percentage off or dollar amount offer to get back as soon as possible.

And when they come in a second time, I’d do something to get them in a third time. If you can get your brand new counter customer in your store a third time—YOU’VE GOT ‘UM!

It’s not a new counter customer unless you can get back a third time. You got them there the first time and it’ doesn’t take too much effort to get them back and second and third time. Why not take the effort and make it happen.

Most dry cleaners don’t take the effort because they never sat down and figured it out. You’re too busy running your plant and doing everything, that marketing takes a back seat to everything else.

Marketing should be in the driver’s seat and that’s what I want you to take away from this report. You no longer should put marketing off. You should dive and get something done.

Here’s what I suggest: Just do one thing. And that one thing is to get your average from 51% to 76% of your counter customers; you don’t have to write it yourself. David Whitehurst has his CSR’s (Customer Service Rep / Customer Sales Rep) do it. Come up with three variations of the hand-written thank you note and give the templates to your CSR’s. Make sure they get mailed out by the end of the day. You could offer something like “10% off your next visit! Just bring this (thank you) card with you.”

Go down to Office Depot and pick up some thank you cards or go online. There are tons of them to choose from. It can be as simple or as elaborate as you want it to be. Don’t get hung up on design or having just the right one. Start today!

Ok. Hopefully you’re getting started today with the hand-written thank you notes.

Step #2: Set Up An Email Autoresponder

The next thing you must do is get an email autoresponder set up. You can set one up with Constant Contact or Aweber. This email system will automatically email your emails in a sequence. So you load up your customers in it and you set it up for the year.

The first email is your welcome email. This is the back up to your hand-written thank you note. And then you set up all your monthly specials and anything else that you’re selling.

My customers get a house cleaning or garment cleaning tip every week. And along with that I use one email each for my specials, my referral rewards program, renting out my Rug Doctor and professional carpet cleaning (I subcontract that out) and selling my ad on services like lawn care, painting, wallpapering, gutter cleaning, car detailing and a bunch more.

So each week, your customers should be getting an email from you that will eventually generate additional revenue for your dry cleaning business.

I have a house cleaning business too. I build it from my dry cleaning customer base initially. When we started that business 11 years ago, I sent out a series of emails talking about our new house cleaning business. I was able to fill it up in three weeks. That’s one person cleaning two houses per day, 5 days a week. When we need new customers, I just put out an email and I get one immediately. I usually have to turn someone down because they didn’t respond quickly enough.

Emails are very powerful and can add income at will to your dry cleaning business. I also use it to let my route customers know of holiday schedules.

If you don’t get your customers’ emails, start getting them now. Make up a simple script and give it to your CSR’s. The biggest thing in asking for an email address is asking with authority and asking as it’s normal to get it. Come up with some pat answers to objections like, “What do you need this for?” Or “Will you be sending junk emails?” Or “I don’t give out my email.”

Give the tough customers an incentive to give you their email like $5 in FREE cleaning or give them something else. And give your CSR’s an incentive too. Have some kind of a contest and reward them for beating their past record high.

Have fun with it and you’ll get tons of emails and you’ll make tons of money from it.

Step #3: Welcome Call

You or one of your CSR’s should personally call each and every new customer the day after they pick up their first dry cleaning with you. This call should be scripted with what you and your CSR’s should say. Most of the time you’ll be getting their voicemail, so a good script will go a long way.

Make sure and discuss that if they ever have a challenge, they should call you personally and you’ll take care of it. This call doesn’t have to be very long. As long as you touch base with them and they hear a human being from your dry cleaners, that will do the trick.

How many other cleaners do you think make welcome calls? Point one of 1%–maybe? You’ll stand out from all the other dry cleaners they’ve ever done business with before.

Step #4: Welcome Kit

Within the first 2 weeks, you should be sending out a “Welcome Kit.” Some of my members give this out when they first come into their store and others send it out. What should you include in your welcome kit? First of all, a letter. In this letter, tell your story and what you believe in for your business. And I’ve got my best newsletter and a microfiber cloth. I give them instructions on how to use the microfiber in the shower to get rid of all the spots. I use it myself.

Keith Caddell, one of my members, gives them a bottle of degreaser and a thingy to help them carry all their dry cleaning along with a letter and his best newsletter.

Use your imagination and give them a welcome kit that will WOW them!

Step #5: Send a Monthly Newsletter

This is paramount. A newsletter will primarily do two things for you: it will get you referred customers with the orchestrated referral program and it will get you more sales of the other stuff you sell. Design a contest and give away something for each referral and a bigger prize for the customer that gives you the most referrals. And if you don’t sell other stuff, you had better start. Make a deal with a carpet cleaner and get a commission off of everything you refer to him. Track the phone calls he gets with Buy a Rug Doctor for $500 and rent it out. You’ll have your investment back in no time. Fix shoes and purses. Clean baby strollers. Start a house cleaning business.

Step #6: Send a One-Month Personal Video

The last step is emailing out a personal thank you video. I do a selfie video with my iPhone. I thank them for becoming a customer and ask them if there is anything I can do and give them my personal mobile number. Hardly anyone calls. I want to separate myself from the other dry cleaners in my market by doing many things they don’t and won’t even consider doing.

Doing all these 6 follow-up steps will catapult your counter customer stick rate to upwards of 76%.

If you would like the EXACT hand-written thank you notes you should be using, go to:

Go to it!

About Greg Colosi

Greg Colosi helps dry cleaners get route customers WITHOUT knocking on doors (even though door knocking is a great way to get customers). All of Greg’s marketing ideas are tested by him or several of his 400+ members, so you won’t get theory, you’ll only get ideas that produce new customers and revenue. To find out more quirky ideas on how to raise your revenue, go to my blog: or call (888) 661-7992.