Loyal customers buy products and services, leave five-star reviews, and refer their favorite businesses to their friends. All of these elements contribute to an organization’s success, so it makes sense that a business would focus heavily on earning customer loyalty.
Are you working on generating loyalty from your customers? If so, here are some strategies to help you attain the customer loyalty you deserve.
1. Define customer loyalty correctly
Earning customer loyalty is a lofty goal, though not impossible. However, there’s a common misperception of customer loyalty that moves organizations in the wrong direction. The misperception is that a loyal customer will never buy from a competitor.
While many brands are true rivals (think Coke and Pepsi) where consumers adamantly pick one over the other, that’s rare. Most consumers have a favorite brand, but still buy products and services from that brand’s competitors. It’s unavoidable. To live and function in society, most people need to purchase from multiple competing brands.
Don’t worry about trying to get your customers to buy only from you. Sure, you still want to market your products and services as the best of the best above your competitors, but don’t be shocked or upset when you see your customers buying from competitors.
2. Measure customer satisfaction
You have loyal customers, but do you know what makes your customers happy? It may not be what you think. Many years ago, Coke didn’t realize a lack of sweetness was exactly what generated their loyal customers. The company found this out the hard way when they altered their recipe to make their cola taste sweet like Pepsi. Customers were outraged and boycotted the brand until they changed it back.
If Coke had been collecting first-hand feedback from customers since day one, they probably wouldn’t have made that mistake. They still may have made some recipe changes, but those changes would have been based on actual customer feedback.
To measure customer satisfaction today, you need to collect that first-hand feedback. The best way to do that is through the Net Promoter Score (NPS) system. Net Promoter Score is a simple, effective way to collect first-hand feedback you can use to increase customer loyalty. In addition to getting specific first-hand feedback, the system will calculate a score ranging from -100 to 100 based on how likely your customers are to refer your brand to friends and family.
The Delighted platform makes it easy to get your NPS score along with first-hand feedback by sending out post-purchase customer satisfaction surveys.
3. When customers buy from your competitors, use that information to make your products better
Have you ever received comments on social media from customers telling you what your competitors are doing better? Rather than getting mad and defending your brand, ask those customers what made them choose your competitor. It could be something as simple as being offered a money back guarantee. Or, it could be related to product quality, features, or function.
When you find out why your customers are buying from your competitors, you can use that information to improve your business. Once improvements are made and you’re on par with your competitors, you’ll win more sales from the start. You’ll know exactly why people buy from your competitor, and you can announce your recent upgrades in a marketing campaign.
4. Stand for something
According to marketing expert Neil Patel, people aren’t loyal to companies—they’re loyal to what a company stands for. Patel uses the example of TOMS, the company that helps one person in need for every purchase made.
TOMS saw massive growth in a short period of time and has plenty of loyal customers. It’s not their product that makes customers loyal; it’s their dedication to helping people in need.
You don’t have to be a philanthropist to stand for something. There are plenty of other things to stand for that will resonate with customers. For example, you could stand for innovation, simplicity, or solutions.
5. Be generous and give your fans the spotlight
Your fans don’t want to merely observe you on social media, they want to participate. You’ve seen this phenomena happen at concerts. Nothing makes fans happier than when the band starts bringing them up on stage to sing.
Consider yourself the band and think of social media as your stage. Start featuring your fans in your content. Share their posts, embed their content, and express your appreciation for their loyalty.
Loyalty is earned over time
Earning customer loyalty takes time, so don’t give up too soon. Strengthen your customer loyalty with these strategies, and your revenue will start reflecting your efforts.