Attracting in a discount-fueled marketplace can be tricky. Retaining and increasing customer loyalty can be even more difficult. The process can become complicated when you don’t want to undervalue your product or services. In the article, “7 Tips for Building Brand Loyalty in a Discount Obsessed market,” Forbes.com suggests the best way to build brand loyalty is to keep your quality level high.
“Customer satisfaction is worthless. Customer loyalty is priceless.” – Jeffery Gitomer
This applies to not just your product, but also every aspect of how you do business with your customers including social media. Customers grow to expect a certain level of quality based on price. Meet and exceed customer expectations, and you will build customers for life who come to you for their needs first – regardless of your price point.
According to Visioncritical.com, gaining new customers is expensive – significantly more expensive than investing in keeping the ones you have. (5-25x more expensive). In fact, improving your retention rate will increase profits by at least 25%, and you may see an increase as high as 95%, (according to the same article). Brand loyalty is a critical component to your retention process.
Building brand loyalty doesn’t happen overnight, but is completely worth the time, energy and effort that your company and employees spend on building that loyalty. Creating a customer base with loyalty to your products and services will allow you to set the bar (and price tag) in the marketplace. Brand loyalists will compare other brands to you and find that, even though they might pay you a little more, it is worth it to not switch.
The second tip in the Forbes.com article is “engage your customers.” We agree completely, and the staff at SocialToaster know exactly how to capitalize on that engagement and build successful loyalty and retention programs. Customer engagement is no longer a trend. It is one of the most powerful ways to build your business from the customer level up. Why is customer engagement so successful? Through engaging your customers, you are giving them an emotional investment in your product. You are convincing them that they have a personal investment in your success. ROI is something that everyone likes to see (particular on their social media endeavors). Customers are no different
How to Increase Customer Loyalty via Customer Engagement
Show Them You Care
Listen to your customers. Engage with them. Ask questions about your products and services and listen to their feedback. Respond… quickly! You absolutely can’t please 100% of the people, 100% of the time – but you can give any negative experience a positive outcome. If a customer contacts you with an area of discontent, address it right away – before they turn to any other outlet, like social media bashing of your goods and services. Apologize for their disappointment and do what you can to improve their experience. It is sometimes a difficult pill to swallow, but letting down your defenses and agreeing with your customer can totally change the tune of the conversation. Your customer service can overcome their disappointment.
Reward them for their feedback! Rewards come in all shapes and sizes, but most people enjoy getting even the littlest of presents. Don’t be afraid to “think outside the box” when it comes to Superfan rewards. Remember – you are working on building their loyalty, so all rewards will matter and promote positivity! We posted a blog about this very subject last summer, and it still rings true.
Keep in mind too that many of your Superfans are people that are sharing your content because of what it does for them in their social spheres. Helping a customer make a name for themselves as a thought leader, amazing parent or fashion connoisseur can foster client loyalty in ways a free Koozie can’t.
Does anyone like to work with a phony? Let your customers see the appreciative side of your business. Feeling appreciated is a positive for most people. (This goes hand-in-hand with show them you care.) Yes, you have your bottom line to worry about, but you are also working on building a brand-loyal family who will consider you the expert that they can trust. Gaining that trust is invaluable and immeasurable.
Let the Experts Help You
This is what we do. At SocialToaster, we specialize in working with your customer base to improve both brand recognition and loyalty through customer engagement programs. The process might feel daunting and overwhelming at first, especially if it isn’t something that your company has tried before now.
Your Superfans will generate between 12-18% more revenue for you then your non-Superfan customers. We can and will help you create programs to turn your average, price-shopping customers into loyal Superfans who rely on your expertise.