Yes, a business needs to drive new customer acquisitions; however, a savvy business owner knows it’s even more important to engage with and create loyal customers. On average, it can cost a business 5-10 times more to acquire a new customer than it does to simply sell to an existing one, and on top of that, repeat customers typically spend 67% more on purchases than new ones. Customer loyalty really acts as the crux of a businesses’ success, so it’s critical you know the best ways to promote it.
In this article, we’ll go over some customer loyalty marketing strategies to keep your already loyal customers happy and to change one-time customers into lifetime ones.
1. Create a Point Program
Creating a point program is an effective marketing strategy many companies use to bolster customer loyalty. Customers earn points on purchases that they make and then translate these points into some type of reward. Consider offering discounts, a freebie, or some sort of special customer treatment as a reward for accumulating points. A point program gives customers constant incentives to continue spending at your business so they can cash in on rewards.
The biggest thing to keep in mind when establishing a point system is – simplicity. If you make your point distribution or rewards exchange too complicated for customers to follow they’ll become confused and lose interest in your point program altogether. Be sure to keep your point system clear and your rewards tangible.
2. Create Brand Ambassadors
This marketing strategy yields dual rewards. Creating brand ambassadors is not only a great way to get free promotion for your business, but also a method that increases your customer loyalty.
A brand ambassador is a term for a customer who promotes your business’ services or products while also creating awareness of your brand. An easy way to create a brand ambassador is to establish a system which rewards customers for promoting your services on social media. For example, if you run a spa and ask a client to send out 5 posts on Twitter about their experiences at your establishment, and in turn, reward them with half-off on one of their next treatments.
Though not an employee, these customers start to feel like an external marketing team for your business. These brand ambassador customers will hold a strong sense of loyalty to your company because they’re going to feel like they’re really part of it.
3. Sponsor Charity Programs around Your Customers’ Values
In order to breed loyalty, you need to show that you understand your customers – their values and sense of worth. If you can do this, you will be able to foster a stronger connection between you and your customers. Consider sponsoring and/or aligning with charity programs that reflect your customers’ values.
For instance, if you own a pet grooming or daycare business, consider sponsoring popular pet charities like the ASPCA or Save-A-Pet. Make sure you showcase your sponsorship, not obnoxiously, but proudly. You can also consider allowing customers to make their own donation at the checkout, or have occasional specials where a percentage of purchases are donated to the given charity.
If you emphasize a regard for the values your customers hold dear, you’ll see a rise in your business’ customer loyalty. Customers will truly want to do business with your company because you really understand them. It’s like they say, birds of a feather flock together.
4. Partner with Neighboring Businesses to Provide Exclusive Promotions
This is not just a marketing strategy for big corporations like American Express or Virgin Airlines. Smaller businesses can take full advantage of partnership promotions, as well.
First, like with the previous loyalty strategy, consider your customer base and their values. Next, think about what other local businesses your customer base would appreciate promotions for. Thinking back to our pet grooming example, the client base of that business would probably enjoy special offers to the local pet store or veterinarian office. Finally, try and set-up a mutually beneficial partnership between your company and theirs, establishing special, exclusive promotions available through each other’s business.
Here, exclusivity is the key to boost your customer loyalty. You want your customer base to feel that doing business with your company generates special privileges that they can’t get anywhere else.
Is your business focused on breeding strong customer loyalty? What are your marketing tips to promote customer loyalty? Leave us a comment below!
About the Author
John Rigo is a content marketer with Booker. His areas of expertise are writing and market research. John brings a unique perspective to the blogosphere with his extensive background in publishing. He also has a love for small and local businesses – how they work, how they grow, and why they succeed.More Content by John Rigo