How to Build Customer Loyalty

Want customers that come back over and over again? Making your repeat customers feel like true VIPs can go a long way in retaining their patronage. Loyalty programs pay off big, especially in competitive industries like cleaning!

Building Customer Loyalty

Ido Gaver, CEO of loyalty-marketing platform LoyalBlocks, announced last week that his company has signed up over 40,000 new merchants in the last four months with their unique loyalty solution for small businesses and national franchises.  He was able to share his insights into making customers come back again and again.

1.  Get hyper-personal.

Gaver says this is a remarkably simple, but underused, strategy for building loyalty. Customers want to feel that you care about them. Create a system that recognizes when return customers enter the building and sends a message that makes them feel appreciated. You can push a message to their mobile device: “Hi Johnny, welcome back to Stuart & Ham! Congrats on your 10th visit–How about a free glass of wine to go with your meal?” If you can tie the special offer directly to their previous purchases and tastes, even better.

2. Let your best customers skip the line.

Everyone hates to wait. If they truly desire your product or service, people will stand in line for it, but don’t punish your loyalists by leaving them out in the cold or heat.  Gaver suggests that you recognize your most faithful patrons by giving them perks like a separate line, advance purchase capability, or immediate seating. Find a way to entertain them while they wait. Show that you value their time and they will respond with gratitude and fidelity.

3. Meet the chef.

Have you ever been at a restaurant and had the chef come out to your table after the meal? Wasn’t it fun to shake the hand that stirred the soup? How fun is it to do a warehouse tour or visit a manufacturing plant? Gaver suggests giving customers a chance to meet the makers of your products and services whatever your business. Let them see the genesis of your product behind the scenes.

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A little extra effort can go a long way in making your cleaning service feel less like simply emptying a trash can and more like a rewarding boutique experience for your client!

Why Shared Values > Engagement

If you want to build customer loyalty, you’ve got to really understand your customers! What matters most to them?

Many marketing campaigns are designed entirely around moving products. What if instead they were designed around moving people?

A Corporate executive Board (CeB) study published by the Harvard Business Review, which included 7,000 consumers across the United States, United Kingdom and Australia, showed that loyalty to brands is almost impossible to achieve without one key element:

Of those consumers who said that they had a strong brand relationship, 64% cited shared values as the primary reason.

Shared values are by far the largest driver of brand loyalty.

According to the CeB, who researched the topic of brand loyalty for more than a year, consumers everywhere stated that they were loyal “not to companies, but to beliefs.”

Think about that. Most customers aren’t particularly loyal to any one business, but they are loyal to what the business stands for.

Connecting with your customers on a personal level is crucial for growing a small business that will retain their loyalty.

Since a majority of your customers don’t care about having a close relationship with your brand, it makes sense that those who do care more deeply about the things you stand for than how often you engage with them.

The only thing that is going to enhance this type of relationship is the knowledge that your business is on the same team as them. These customers will want to see that you share their beliefs and that you incorporate those beliefs into how you conduct business.

The most beloved brands have developed their cult following through a strong stance on issues both within and outside of their industry.

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Have you used any strategies to keep customers coming back for more? How has it worked out for you so far?

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