Loyal fans and brand advocates are extremely valuable to a business. Research has found that existing customers are 50% more likely to try new products and spend 31% more, on average, compared to new customers.
These valuable customers spend more. They rave about their experience to friends and on social media. They even choose their favorite brands over competitors regardless of convenience or price.
Businesses both big and small can benefit from creating brand loyalty, establishing lasting, authentic relationships, and building legions of loyal fans. Here are six rules to help you start building brand loyalty for your business.
Consistency Is Key
Once a brand chooses its identity, it needs to stick with it. Customers respond to and remember brands that know who they are and spread that sense of self across all of their platforms and appearances.
Keep a steady brand identity by:
- Using Consistent Branding Element: logos, colors, and fonts
- Using Consistent Imagery: similarly themed graphics, images, and icon styles
- Using Consistent Voice and Tone: language that sounds like the same person is talking across all platforms
Invite Conversational Engagement
Making friends with customers is an excellent way for brands to build loyalty. Engage with customers regularly. Have conversations with customers to show you care and are interested in who they are and what they have to say.
Ask for feedback. Ask customers for opinions about their experiences with your brand, products, and services. Find out what works for them, what doesn’t, and what you can do to improve.
Connect with customers on social media. Social media goes both ways so don’t just post and promote. Respond to other user’s posts and ask questions. Millennials are touted as the most brand loyal generation, with 50.5% reporting "extreme loyalty" to brands that had successfully won and kept their business.
People build long-term relationships with brands they can trust. For that trust to be established, brands must be authentic and transparent. That is, brands should say what they mean and mean what they say.
Your brand can be open and honest by instilling the following habits.
Share company news and updates. Brands can let customers know what’s going on with their business by sharing behind-the-scenes information. Share news and updates such as new hires, staff promotions, and office and policy changes. Buffer did a great job with this recently when they wrote a blog post to explain why they decided to move out of their office.
Share company values. Brands can also show their true nature by sharing posts about their company philosophies. Write blog posts and create content that reflects your brand values about your business, your industry, and your philanthropic endeavors.
Talk to customers on their level. Brands should never use condescending language or industry jargon. Talk to customers as though you are having a conversation with them as a peer. Don’t try to hide ulterior motives or using confusing language to deflect the truth. The customer will always know (and probably call you out for it).
Institute Customer Rewards
Another way to show customers that you appreciate and notice them is to reward them for their patronage and loyalty.
You can thank your customers by using loyalty programs and promotions such as:
- Offering discounts when customers spend a certain amount
- Offering discounts when a customer makes a certain number of purchases
- Regularly mailing or emailing coupons to customers on your list
- Offering discounts to customers who refer a friend
- Sending bonuses or promotional items to customer when they mention your brand on social media
According to the Harvard Business Review, rewards programs practically pay for themselves. Three out of four U.S. companies generate their return on investment when using loyalty programs.
Offer Unique Experiences at Every Touch Point
Businesses can also build brand loyalty by making customers feel good about doing business with them. To excite and delight customers, you should incorporate an interesting or exceptional experience at every customer touch point.
A Customer Journey Map helps identify those places your customer engages with your brand the most.
Upgrade In-Store Touch Points: Upgrade the experience that your customer has in your store by adding unique elements that differentiate your brand. Use digital signage to highlight your products or promotions. Use interactive boards that allow your customer to choose and browse content. Make sure your store environment matches your branding by using decor and overhead music that matches your brand’s style.
Upgrade Website Touch Points: Customers usually visit a brand’s website to find the information they need. Make that information extremely easy to find. Provide quick and intuitive customer service options and FAQs. Use clear language and navigation. Make it easy for them to contact a representative for additional help and make it a great calling experience if you prompt customers to call your location.
Upgrade Social Media Touch Points: As mentioned above, don’t just use your social media solely for promotion. Use it as a tool to make your customers feel special. Make your followers feel like they matter by sending them direct messages and special offers and by sharing their posts and comments.
Always Provide Value
Lastly, if you want to build brand affinity and loyalty, never skimp on the value.
Always provide products that over-deliver, services that over-perform, and customer service staff that over-serves.
Always take it up a notch to show your customers you are superior to your competitors, you are dedicated to providing exceptional customer experiences, and your brand is their brand.
Ready to see how you can improve your brand loyalty and create long-lasting relationships with customers? Spectrio specializes in helping brands stand out from their competitors and differentiate themselves through unique multimedia platforms such as digital signage, overhead music, and hold messaging.
Let’s find out how we can help you elevate your brand and create long-term brand loyalty and more happy customers. Schedule a free consultation with a Spectrio specialist.