There’s no way around it: getting a customer is way more expensive than keeping one. This huge fact may be hard to believe when we hear horror stories about customer service. Why would a company let any of their customers go away angry if they know that finding a replacement customer will cost six times more money? Maybe they don’t know how much money they could save by inspiring a little loyalty. But you do.
How can you inspire true-blue loyalty from your customers? Here are some helpful hints.
We don’t mean you need to go through your customers’ garbage to get the goods. There’s a line a mile wide between gathering information and stalking. Your customers will tell you everything they want you to know, from their names to their family status.
Use that information to greet them by name, to extend offers that will appeal to their individual circumstances, and perhaps even their location. Personalized greetings and offers make them feel special, like you know exactly who they are and want to be best friends with them. Anything less than true personalization is the equivalent of a flier tucked under their windshield wiper in the grocery store parking lot.
Flip the Script
When consumers hear “loyalty” program, they know deep down that it refers to their loyalty to a particular brand. What if, instead, a loyalty program exhibited the brand’s dedication to making return customers happy—if, in fact, the loyal party was the business? Wouldn’t that change the way any customer viewed a particular brand?
Instead of waiting for customers to engage with your brand before offering a reward, start the conversation yourself. Whether you send out offers for anyone who signs up or start conversations on your social media platforms, the results are the same: your customers feel special.
Free stuff is always fun, until customers realize you have no other tricks up your sleeve. When you’ve provided bad service, sold a defective product, employed a particularly rude sales agent, or just flat out did your customers wrong, free just doesn’t cut it as an apology. The same is true for showing gratitude. A present is fun once in a while, but your buyers just want to know you appreciate them.
How can you show your appreciation without free stuff? How about proactive service, with emails or social media messages asking for their feedback on products and programs? Some customers may enjoy a chance to shop your latest collection before the general public gets a chance to see what’s coming. Others might want to give a friend the benefit of your services, even if just as a sample. Find out what they really want and strive to give it to them.
Does it cost money to retain your customers? Of course it does. You must always be prepared to spend money to make money. Just remember that an existing customer will convert 70% of the time, while new customers are only 5% likely to convert, and existing customers spend 67% more than a new customer. Your investment is definitely worth the cost.
Plan Left loves to build websites and marketing plans for ecommerce that put these customer loyalty tips into practice. If you’d like to learn more about automating loyalty programs and creating campaigns that make your customers feel like royalty, give us a call.
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