To remain sustainable and accelerate the growth of their brand, businesses must build a devoted consumer base. We can’t overstate the value of client loyalty activities, especially now.
It’s also critical to do it correctly, guided by your company’s principles and a desire to deliver for your consumers. You must win your clients’ trust so that they will continue to support your brand even if the market fluctuates.
What does client loyalty include (and why is it so important)?
Simply defined, client loyalty occurs when a firm receives repeat business from its consumers. Customer retention will assist your business if you deliver high value in your product or service and the customer experience is continuously outstanding. That implies less time and money spent on client acquisition (though you’ll still go out of your way to get a new customer).
Here are a few strategies for building meaningful client relationships and ensuring long-term consumer loyalty:
1. Make your values known
You must first identify which features of your brand are deserving of your consumers’ loyalty before you can enhance customer loyalty. Create a marketing plan with your team that explains what makes your brand unique, what your mission is, and how your values fit with your consumers’ basic beliefs.
Your marketing should concentrate on those brand features that are distinctive to your company and allow you to differentiate yourself from the competition. Standing out may often entail taking a stand, which is becoming increasingly popular. According to an Edelman survey, two-thirds of buyers increasingly buy based on their views. You don’t have to go political, though. In fact, it’s possible that this isn’t true to your ideals. Your brand’s ideals should be your compass. Be adamant about your beliefs and express them openly.
2. Provide outstanding client service.
You want to provide new and existing consumers with the finest possible experience. Your customer experience comprises everything your customers do with you, from the first time they visit your website to the time they contact and ask for help from your customer care staff. People, especially when it comes to customer service, have high expectations. According to a survey we did with Dimensional Research, 89 percent of people feel that a timely response to an initial inquiry is crucial when determining who to buy from. When you consider that almost half of individuals say they would switch to a competitor brand after only one terrible service encounter, it’s easy to understand why putting a strong focus on customer service is so critical to establishing brand loyalty. You might begin by extending your channel choices to respond faster to consumer requirements.
Using an Omnichannel strategy to customer service will allow you to deliver a quick and useful response regardless of how your consumers contact you. More Omnichannel support best practices may be found here.
3. Send personalized emails
I don’t know about you, but reading an email that is written in such a way that it might be addressed to anybody makes me hesitant to click the “Buy Now” button. I’m not the only one that thinks this way. Ones that address the receiver by name have a 6 times greater transaction rate than impersonal emails.
Another method to make email communication more personal is to tell the narrative of how you got started with your company. Consider it like having a coffee conversation with a customer. It’s a simple method to establish a closer relationship with your consumer.
Sending birthday wishes or coupons to your clients on the date they become a customer is another fantastic way to make emails more personal—but only if they have given you access to that information. Explain how you’ll utilize the information you get from your clients when you ask for it (e.g. to design new products or deliver a better customer experience).
Set up your shop email to incorporate your brand name—[email protected] rather than support-mystore-gmail.com—for a more professional look.
4. Activate your supporters to help you tell the world.
You can locate your fan base—the most enthusiastic advocates of your brand and its principles—once you understand your beliefs. These are your life-or-death clients, the ones that tweet about you, tag you in Instagram Stories, and brag to their friends about how much they love your product or service. It’s likely to be a tiny number of really happy consumers, especially if you’re just getting started, but they’re crucial if you want to figure out who’s engaging with your brand and why. It’s up to you to track them down and learn everything you can about them so you can track down others who match the similar mold. These individuals will serve as global brand ambassadors for your company. You should communicate with them frequently – you could even want to surprise a current client with unique presents to reward them for their devotion, a method known as “astonishment” that can assist enhance customer retention and loyalty.
5. A loyalty program is a great way to show your thanks.
It is beneficial to incentivize recurring purchases through special offers, discounts, or incentives in order to foster client loyalty. Create your own customer loyalty program if you want to go all out. There are several sorts of loyalty programs, including those based on point systems, which are the virtual counterpart of a coffee shop punch card. You may make your consumers feel good about their purchases and encourage them to return by providing them with a gift. Utilize these kinds of loyalty programs make your consumers feel valued and appreciated while also giving you vital customer data that you can utilize to improve your service. These strategies may improve your short-term outcomes, but since they’ve become so prevalent, they might fall short when it comes to developing a real relationship with your clients. You should also make an effort to serve your consumers by providing a positive customer experience and adhering to your company’s principles. These initiatives, when combined, can help transform repeat consumers into loyal ones.
6. Get to know each other better.
Giving your loyalists a place to engage with the business and with each other will help you continue to strengthen your relationship with them. Making a community forum is a simple method to do this. They may share product optimization ideas and tactics, and community managers can keep the connection going by giving extra resources and assistance. These interactions can sometimes happen naturally on social media, and if they do, you should take advantage of them. More firms, for example, are forming Facebook Groups where they can interact with their most engaged followers. These are frequently effective when they focus on channeling the excitement of a specific set of supporters, such as Starbucks’ Facebook Group for aficionados of their distinctive Pumpkin Spice Latte. These sorts of community hubs are useful for engaging fans, as well as collecting feedback and product recommendations from some of your most devoted consumers and brand advocates.
7. Collaboration with a Different Company and Influencer
As previously said, working with another relevant brand is a terrific method to increase your visibility and provide additional alternatives to your current clients.
If you’re a fashion brand, for example, you may form a partnership with a fashion influencer by providing them with your clothes to promote. This will bring your brand name to the attention of the audience at their social media platform, and vice versa.
This strategy may also be applied to your company’s charity efforts. You may show your devotion to your community and give the organization additional publicity by informing your clients that a percentage of their purchase will go to a certain charity.
8. Speak the Language of Your Clients
“Speaking your customer’s language” can refer to two separate concepts, both of which should be remembered.
The first is physically speaking the customer’s native language: 75% of consumers think they are more inclined to buy products and services if the product information is in their original language. The same may be said about customer service. Offering multilingual services, especially if your company has a worldwide presence, is a terrific approach to improve the customer experience and show that you respect your clients.
The second relates to dealing with consumers in a more conversational tone. We’re not proposing that you start learning the current lingo; rather, we recommend that you use language that is kind, easy to understand, and relatable; you should include this language into everything from your customer service scripts to your marketing materials. Begin by paying attention to your customers: To gain a feel of their tone, diction, and phrasing, pay close attention to how people talk about different items and the pain areas they encounter. Avoid using sophisticated industry jargon wherever feasible, and always keep readability in mind.
9. Request feedback.
If you want to increase client loyalty, you should solicit input from your consumers at every opportunity. Customer satisfaction (CSAT) surveys are widely used after a support contact to determine how satisfied your customers are with the assistance they got. You may also request that your customer care representatives offer anecdotal input on how clients are reacting or the frequent difficulties they are facing in the tickets they deal on. Aside from surveys, you may also monitor social media activity and read online reviews. No one enjoys receiving negative feedback, yet negative feedback may really assist you since it pinpoints the specific areas that require development. Taking client feedback seriously also demonstrates to consumers and prospects that you care about them and are dedicated to giving a positive experience. This can assist boost satisfaction and loyalty.
10. Enhance the consumer experience on a regular basis.
Make this a constant process of innovation and improvement to increase consumer loyalty. Because the world is continuously changing, you should revisit your brand identity and principles on a frequent basis. While your ideals should remain constant, your posture should adapt to the current mood. You may wish to update your messaging or build communication methods for various audiences when new members join your community. You should constantly have your finger on the pulse of your customer experience, which involves talking to and soliciting feedback from your consumers on a regular basis. Client complaints should be taken seriously since they are indicators of the health of the customer relationship. Customers’ behavior and channel usage may shift dramatically in the blink of an eye, and you need to be ready to pivot and meet them where they are—wherever that may be in the months and years ahead.
It’s all about connections when it comes to gaining client loyalty. To create trust, like with any connection, requires time and work, as well as constant commitment to keep the relationship afloat. Loyalty and retention cannot be purchased; they must be earned. Look to your customer experience to promote client loyalty, and do everything you can to make your customers’ life simpler and perhaps more joyful.