We all know customer loyalty is the driving engine for a flourishing business. But what is customer loyalty, actually? Customer loyalty is having customers who are committed your company and your products, not just a price point that a competitor can easily emulate.
But customer loyalty goes two ways, and first you have to prove your loyalty before expecting to receive any in return.
"So what’s the best, most direct way to show customers your commitment, and inspire loyalty in return? A solid customer loyalty program."
1. Stay Connected
Take the time to set up a database with contact information such as email addresses, mailing addresses, or phone numbers. Then you can send friendly reminders, birthday greetings, or a monthly newsletter.
Social media is another great way to communicate with your customers on an almost daily basis. Keep in mind that this works better if you limit how many of your communications are actually advertisements.
"Don’t forget to throw in messages that are either fun reminders or useful information i.e."
2. Over Promise, Over Deliver
Customers remember when they’re treated well, and they remember when they’re treated poorly. In either case, they usually tell their friends and family, and that can either mean more business for you or lost business opportunities.
3. Provide a goal
Your loyalty program should have a clear goal. Is there a big discount a customer can receive? A free item? Store credit?
"You can even use this incentive to inspire loyalty program sign-ups."
4. Set a clear path to that goal
Your loyalty program should have delineated milestones toward the ultimate goal.
Is it filling out stamps on a card with each qualifying purchase? Or maybe it’s sharing a tweet on social media to receive points. Whatever it is, express it clearly and then commit to it.
5. Give new customers a head start toward that goal
Give customers a head start when they sign-up. This means giving them credit toward their goal before they even act—whether that be a stamp on a card or points in an account.
"Don’t let customers start from zero."
Sticky Tip: Make Your Loyalty Program Fit with a Greater Relationship Marketing Plan
A good loyalty program is about more than just offering customers a few rewards now and again.
By really thinking about how your loyalty program can serve the customer experience and strengthen your relationships, you can increase your chances of creating strong loyalty with existing customers.