In addition to the standard customer retention strategies, companies nowadays have to divert more and more attention to another medium — social media.
Social media can be one of the best places to build customer loyalty because, by its very nature, it encourages engagement between brands and customers. There are many ways to go about this, so let’s dive right into it. Here are 6 ways to build customer loyalty with social media.
Show Your Human Side
Modern customers, especially those on the younger side (Millennial and Gen Z) know when they’re being marketed to and targeted. They’re not necessarily opposed to the idea of being marketed to. However, the customer-service provider dynamics have changed so much throughout these past years, to the point that it’s moved beyond just being a purely transactional relationship. As a result, brands must look for novel ways to promote their products, but without promoting them per se.
A great way to achieve that tricky balance is for brands to do as best as they can to show their human side on social media. Modern consumers tend to be more open to doing business with brands they connect with on a personal level.
For example, if the company has numerous employees, they can share pictures of their teams enjoying some quality time. Snapshots of a regular day at the office also work. But going too overboard with it can also become off-putting in the long run. The idea here is not to document the minutiae of day-to-day life at the office but to transmit a message.
It should be about the company values you’re trying to convey through those posts. Is your brand super eco-friendly? Dedicated to animal conservation? These are the sort of things your social media posts should be about.
Repurpose Your Best Content
Content repurposing is a highly effective strategy, with a body of research so big it can stretch from the moon and back. Many marketers swear by it, and for good reasons: essentially, it involves little to no effort from the content team, because the hard work (aka creating said content) and bringing results has already been done.
It’s also a great way to increase customer loyalty for one simple reason: it’s objectively the best, because it’s supported by numbers. And because they brought so many positive results, it’s obvious they had something that people loved.
Therefore, the next step is to work out which content had the best results and meshed with your audience. Don’t just wing it, though — the best way to go about this is to integrate content repurposing into your overarching social media strategy. To make the job easier, it might be a good idea to use a dedicated tool. Planning and scheduling Instagram posts, for example, can ensure your pages are fed with a steady stream of content on a regular basis.
A social media calendar can be a great help as well, as it can provide you with a bird’s eye view of your social media campaigns.
Worst case scenario: some people might complain about you resharing old content. Best: new followers get to see it for the first time.
Be Responsive — Interact With Customers
This should be a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised at the number of businesses that don’t interact directly with customers on social media platforms. So much so that we’re surprised when a business does reply to an inquiry.
This brings us back to the point I made previously about the changing dynamics between customers and brands. According to Marketing Charts, 72 percent of millennials said that they’d much rather do business with brands that are in tune with their needs and are responsive. And since millennials are slowly but surely making up a larger and larger portion of the workforce, brands have no choice but to subscribe to this way of doing business.
Here’s another number to put things into perspective — as far back as 2017, 56 million millennials were working or looking for work in the U.S, with many experts stating that it’s the largest generation in the U.S. labor force.
There’s also a case to be made about omnichannel communication. More and more companies are adopting proactive customer service, as it has a higher positive impact on customer retention than the standard reactive customer service.
Share Glowing Customer Feedback
Sharing glowing customer feedback on social media shouldn’t be about bragging — it should be done with the sole purpose of showing that you care about customer opinion. On that same note, by gathering your consumers’ feedback and posting positive reviews, you’re more likely to attract new customers and reinforce current customers’ trust in your business.
A lot of scientific research has been dedicated to what drives purchase decisions, and many of them concluded that, generally, people place higher value on the opinions of other customers. This also explains the explosion of influencer marketing in the last few years — but that’s a discussion for another time.
Provide Useful, Authoritative Information
Here’s the thing: “useful information” can be very subjective. What’s useful to you may not be to your average customer who followed your page to be up to date with the latest features or discounts.
As a result, the best approach here would be to take a moment and ask: what binds all of your customers together? What’s the one piece of information that will feel truly useful to a large majority of your customers, regardless of interests and level of familiarity with the industry you’re operating in? Is it data? Stats? Tips and tricks? Life hacks? If you’re selling a SaaS product, your followers might be interested in new and creative ways through which they could maximize their efficiency when using your product.
Careful with how you frame that information, though: this is not the place nor the time to plug your service as the one true solution to all their problems. Some self-promo is fine, but the main purpose should be to educate and help followers solve a problem.
Share Customer-Generated Content
User generated content is another great loyalty-building strategy on social media. User-generated content can include many things, from photos, videos, and other types of content customers may create related to your brand. This also includes memes, by the way, because memes by themselves come from a place of emotional connection with a brand. However, brands should tread carefully when it comes to memes in general, as it can backfire in more ways than one.
Circling back to user-generated content, this can create trust between brands and customers as well. Mainly because it shows that the brand really cares about their customers. Secondly, encouraging active participation from shoppers (who’d likely be happy to see their content featured) creates a sense of community. And what better way to build customer loyalty than nurturing a community around your services or products?
That’s a wrap on this piece covering building customer loyalty on social media. Like I stated in the intro, there are many ways to go about this — there is no perfect formula for this. What worked for other brands may not drive as good results for you. However, the tips listed in the article are a good starting point to build your ideal customer loyalty strategy on social media.