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Ways to Continually Develop Customer Loyalty

Mikkel Andreassen
Ways to Continually Develop Customer Loyalty

Customer loyalty is the act of choosing products from a single brand regardless of the price or other product specificities. To achieve this level of trust, companies have to invest in building relationships with their clients and provide the best experience possible. It is a continuous process that requires a lot of time and resources so it’s no wonder that a lot of companies struggle with this aspect. The main goal is to provide some sort of guarantee that people will have a great user experience no matter what product or service they choose. 

Loyal customers are essential for every business’s success. The competition has become fierce in every industry and customers have a lot of options to choose from, which makes keeping them even harder. According to American Express, 60% of the American customers would consider choosing a competitor company if it met their needs better. On the other hand, the same percentage of people are likely to purchase more products of a brand they are loyal to.

The question is how to actually build customer loyalty and get to the point where people support you, even if you don’t deliver the top-quality product.

Customer loyalty can’t be achieved overnight and the process usually requires a lot of small actions that add to the overall impression. While there are no magic formulas, some principles remain the same, regardless of the type of work.

Here are 5 strategies that can help you communicate with your audience properly and build strong relationships that will result in a big, loyal community in the end.


Strengthen relationships with your customers

Building customer loyalty is not a one-time activity. It is a process that requires you to invest time and resources into strengthening the relationship with your customers. There is a variety of tactics that can help you in this quest, but you need to be consistent. If you want customers to trust you, prove that you are reliable with actions, not words.

Perhaps the most important factor is regular communication with your clients. You have to be available for people and listen to what they have to say. How do they feel about your business? Is there anything that bothers them? Do they have any ideas for improvement? There is no one-size-fits-all model and you need to approach each person differently. Most businesses give up here and miss the opportunity to truly connect with customers.


Offer the best deal for your most loyal customers

People who are loyal to your brand should be recognized and awarded. For instance, you can create specific deals for selected customers or offer good discounts. People usually respond very well to such promotions, especially if they aren’t offered to everyone. The important thing is the narrative around these deals. Your goal is not to buy people’s affection by giving them discounts, but to show that you notice those who are loyal. The main goal is the message that you send as a brand, which is: ’’We care about our customers and we want to thank them for being loyal to us”. When executed well, such actions usually help cement your relationship with customers and ensure their loyalty for much longer.


Practice‌ ‌what‌ ‌you‌ ‌preach‌ ‌

If‌ ‌you‌ ‌want‌ ‌people‌ ‌to‌ ‌connect‌ ‌with‌ ‌your‌ ‌brand,‌ ‌you‌ ‌have‌ ‌to‌ ‌provide‌ ‌more‌ ‌than‌ ‌just‌ ‌a‌ ‌product‌ ‌or‌ ‌a‌ ‌service.‌ ‌You‌ ‌must‌ ‌have‌ ‌a‌ ‌very‌ ‌clear‌ ‌set‌ ‌of‌ ‌values‌ ‌that‌ ‌communicate‌ ‌what‌ ‌your‌ ‌company‌ ‌stands‌ for, but ‌more‌ ‌importantly,‌ ‌you‌ ‌must‌ ‌practice‌ ‌what‌ ‌you‌ ‌preach‌. This ‌is‌ ‌the‌ ‌hard‌ ‌part‌ ‌in‌ ‌which‌ ‌many‌ ‌businesses‌ ‌fail.‌ ‌The‌ ‌first‌ ‌step‌ ‌is‌ ‌identifying‌ ‌the‌ ‌core‌ ‌values‌ ‌you‌ ‌want‌ ‌to‌ ‌communicate‌ to your customers ‌and‌ ‌the‌ ‌reason‌ ‌they‌ ‌are‌ ‌so important.‌ ‌Be‌ ‌very‌ ‌specific‌ ‌with‌ ‌these‌ ‌values‌ ‌and‌ ‌explore‌ ‌how‌ ‌they‌ ‌are‌ ‌reflected‌ ‌in‌ ‌your‌ ‌everyday‌ ‌activities.‌  For‌ ‌instance,‌ ‌a‌ ‌lot‌ ‌of‌ ‌brands‌ ‌say‌ ‌they‌ ‌‌care about environmental ‌protection,‌ ‌yet‌ ‌they‌ ‌never‌ ‌recycle.‌ ‌There‌ ‌are‌ ‌also‌ ‌companies‌ ‌claiming‌ ‌they‌ ‌prioritize‌  ‌employees,‌ ‌whereas‌ ‌people‌ ‌have‌ ‌very‌ ‌poor‌ ‌work‌ ‌conditions.‌ ‌Small‌ ‌things‌ ‌like‌ ‌these‌ ‌can‌ ‌significantly‌ ‌impact‌ ‌a‌ ‌brand’s‌ ‌reputation‌ ‌and‌ ‌you‌ ‌need‌ ‌to‌ ‌make‌ ‌sure‌ ‌your‌ ‌actions‌ ‌confirm‌ ‌everything‌ ‌you‌ ‌stand‌ ‌for.‌ ‌ ‌


Be honest with your customers  

Most businesses nowadays are trying to look flawless so they invest a lot of money in marketing campaigns and different promotions. The entire narrative focuses only on their strong sides, which isn’t so bad per se. However, the problem with this approach is the incredibly high expectations people have that are sometimes impossible to meet. Even the slightest mistake can crush customer’s trust which is very hard to rebuild afterward.

The best strategy you can take is to be honest with your customers. Don’t present your business as ideal, but instead focus on your willingness to grow and improve over time. Most importantly – if you make a mistake, be brave enough to publicly admit it and apologize. This way, you will be showing respect to your customers who will award you in return with their support and loyalty. No matter how bad a situation is, honesty can get you out of it.


Personalize your communication

In a time when everybody is trying to automate processes, be the one who is doing the opposite. Although using chatbots or generic messages will save you a lot of time, there is no way you can build strong connections this way. People should be able to talk to you, not a machine.

The reason why a personalized communication is so important is the opportunity for people to get attached to you and your business emotionally. We are not purely rational beings and most of our decisions are impacted by a wide range of emotions. Your goal is to provide space for people to establish an emotional connection with your brand and attach some of the positive, happy emotions with it. Ideally, your communication style should be as if you are talking to an old friend who you love and respect a lot. If you think of your customers this way, it will be easier to come up with concrete messages you want to send.

Building customer loyalty is not an easy task and requires continuous efforts at all levels. It’s quite demanding, but the benefits are tremendous. If you succeed, you may get an active community that will support your business regardless of the specific product or service you have to offer. In the end, it all comes down to people and how much you can rely on their support in both good and challenging times.

Mikkel Andreassen
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