Excelling at customer loyalty is a marathon, not a sprint.
Modern businesses have already identified the importance of building customer loyalty and have prioritized their actions towards this approach. In fact, according to Forrester, improving customer loyalty was a top marketing priority for 80% of decision-makers at large organizations last year.
But, while earning customer loyalty is a mission-critical in the age of the customer, several challenges stand in the way of success.
Either you have a customer loyalty program in place or you simply want to support your loyalty efforts, these 5 factors play a key role in winning your customers’ minds and hearts.
Brands today focus more on the customer loyalty program rather than building relationships with their customers. But loyalty goes beyond the program. Customer experience is what matters when creating your approach to customer loyalty.
In order to achieve that, you need to design a solid customer-centric loyalty strategy, which enables you to set goals and describe with clarity and detail all the processes. By not having clear goals, you can’t understand what works and what doesn’t for your brand and therefore for your customers.
Rewarding customer loyalty
The power of emotional engagement in building strong relationships with your customers is undoubtable. But today brands ignore emotional loyalty.
Address the emotional complications of customer loyalty with incentives beyond transactions that add value. The best customer loyalty programs don’t just engage with and reward shoppers during the “buy” stage; they also give points for a variety of different actions, making customers feel valued, appreciated and confident.
Engaged customers spend more and promote more. Think outside the transaction history and focus on real-time engagement to delight shoppers and create unique customer experiences.
Technology advancements can help you drive customer engagement and connect with your customers with the right messages at the right moment, delivering personalized and consistent experiences across all touchpoints.
One of the main reasons why your customer loyalty efforts are ineffective, is because you miss the data and insights opportunity. The first step is to understand the value of customer insights for your brand, and then invest in the right systems and processes to act upon them. Make sure you collect and analyze customer data and use them throughout the customer life cycle. Share customer insights across the organization and always measure the business value of loyalty.
The technology factor
Technology is changing the way consumers shop and interact with brands. Especially today, building loyalty in the age of the Connected customer, where shoppers are always connected via their smartphones, is challenging.
Focus on new ways to reach this new type of customer, using advanced marketing technology tools. Reinforce loyalty with marketing automation and Artificial Intelligence to win these mobile moments meet faster the rising expectations of your customers.
Loyal customers act differently than occasional customers and being able to understand their shopping behavior, demographic profiles and micro-moments during their engagement with you, will help you keep them more engaged, devoted and, finally, maximize their lifetime value. Focus on these five factors to take your loyalty marketing efforts to the next level.