Can we increase customer loyalty?


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CBR001831Customer loyalty is an integral part of doing business, but what precisely is involved? Better yet, how do customers become loyal? Most of what we hear about loyalty centers around loyalty to products, but brand loyalty is different from service loyalty. The first element of customer loyalty to consider is reliability; either product or service, but more so, it is doing what you say your service will do. Breaking it down, customer loyalty is based on doing it right the first time, and doing it on time.

Customers will accept the occasional mistake, but too many mistakes are the kiss of death. Customers will ultimately find a better product or service, won’t refer you to their friends, nor will they stay with you if you let them down too often. We take it for granted that the new computer, the new television, or the new i phone will work, and if it doesn’t the product will be replaced. Do we take it in stride however, that someone does not call us back, does not deliver what she said she would, or does not send the information promised to us? Probably not, because we will most likely move on to someone who does. In other words, everything you say has to be reliable.

Then there is another important aspect of building customer loyalty, and that is one of being likeable. Customers want to feel good about the people they do business with, so don’t ever underestimate the need for “charm school.” Being likeable doesn’t cost a lot of money, but the following people skills may keep your clients coming back:

  • Always display a genuine smile and be warm and friendly.
  • Listen to your customer using eye contact, and make it obvious that you are listening.
  • Address your customer by name.
  • Keep your promises.
  • Treat your customers as you would expect someone to treat you.
  • If there is a problem or complaint, respond quickly and show genuine empathy for the situation. Picture in your mind how you would feel if faced with a similar problem.
  • Occasionally do something special for your client or customer to show her/him that you appreciate their loyalty.

Customers rely on those intangible cues, and as we deliver and develop the interpersonal bonds, we increase our customer loyalty. It’s part of making outstanding service our primary “product.”

photo credit: Spirit-Fire

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Cheryl Hanna
Service Untitled
Cheryl Hanna is a successful real estate sales person in Florida and has used her customer service knowledge and experience to set her apart and gain a competitive edge in a very difficult market. Cheryl has been writing professionally since 1999 and writes for several blogs and online publications


  1. I completely agree, Cheryl, that being reliable and likeable are two very important components of creating customer loyalty. However, I would like to add that it’s also essential to create an ongoing dialogue with customers to keep them engaged when they are between visits to your business.

    To do that, many companies are turning to Engagement Communication technology to not only make a connection with customers, but motivate them to take action. Through a series of calls, e-mail, text messages or social media, retailers can communicate with customers in a format they prefer and create a constant feedback loop that gives companies deeper insights into their customers’ motivations and needs.

    Engagement Communications involves customized campaign-based outreach. While outgoing messages can be scaled from tens to thousands of customers, each is delivered and experienced in a personalized manner.

    For example, if a retailer hasn’t seen a group of customers in the store for awhile, he could send a series of text messages indicating the staff has missed them and invite them to an upcoming sale. Or, knowing the purchasing history of customers, e-mails can be sent when a shipment of a “must-have” item arrives in the store.

    This level of engagement builds better customer relationships because it shows the customers you care. It is a necessary component to drive the overall customer experience and increase customer loyalty.

    Thank you for the post.

    Scott Zimmerman, President of


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