For years now, publications have been declaring that the era of brand loyalty is long gone. Consumers jump from brand to brand to purchase products and are easily convinced to switch brands at the drop of a hat. While it’s true that winning customer loyalty is a greater challenge today, it is possible with the right approach and a focus on building a brand that actually engages customers.
Let’s start by defining a term that can easily become vague or elusive. What is brand loyalty, really? Characteristics of brand loyalty include perceived value, brand trust, customer satisfaction, repeat purchase behavior, and commitment.
Brand loyalty manifests itself in valuable ways like:
Some customers are so loyal to a brand, they could be classified as brand loyalists.
A brand loyalist demonstrates a long-term commitment and emotional connection with a brand. Loyalists are highly unlikely to switch brands, even if offered an incentive like a lower price from another brand. These customers are often outspoken about their brand preference, and they may even feel a sense of tradition entwined with the brand. For example, someone might be adamant about using a particular brand of flour in their baking since this is the brand their parents and grandparents always used.
Building brand loyalty isn’t something you can do overnight. You have to lay a solid foundation and use the right tools to create something that customers are excited to be a part of. Incorporate these strategies into your loyalty blueprint.
In order to build a relationship with customers, you need to have an identity they can connect to, and this identity needs to be unique. Why would someone develop a closer connection with your brand than a competitor if you’re essentially just the same?
In order to create strong relationships with customers, your brand should feel more like a person than a nameless, faceless corporation. What is your brand’s personality? You can’t be all things to all people, so home in on the specific identity you want to project.
Customer loyalty programs are designed to encourage and reward customer loyalty, so creating one of these programs may seem like a no-brainer. However, just having a loyalty program won’t automatically win you loyal customers because many of these programs fall flat. That’s why the average consumer is inactive in nine out of the nearly 17 loyalty programs they’re enrolled in.
If you have a loyalty program that is underperforming, it’s time to rethink your program and determine the best ways to actually inspire loyalty. Effective customer loyalty programs engage customers with benefits like a personalized shopping experience and exciting rewards they’ll be eager to redeem.
If customers only purchase one specific product from your company, they aren’t necessarily loyal to your brand as a whole, just loyal to that product. You can encourage brand loyalty by cross-selling and upselling to these customers.
Make sure your recommendations for add-ons or additional products are based on customer data and show you understand what matters to that particular customer to truly enhance their customer experience. One study found that personalized recommendations were responsible for a 29 percent increase in revenue, and the more relevant those recommendations were, the better the results.
Personalization can play a major role in helping you improve customer retention. Relationships go two ways, so if you want customers to feel a connection to your brand, you need to do your part to show you really know and care about them as individuals. No customer wants to feel like merely a number.
Personalization can come in a variety of forms. For example, you can:
Personalization is key if you want to turn disengaged customers into active, loyal ones.
At Baesman, we understand customer loyalty and how crucial it is to your brand’s success. That’s why we help brands of all sizes and across industries create unique customer loyalty programs that appeal to their customers.
Want to learn more about what sets effective loyalty programs apart? Read our eBook, Customer Loyalty Programs: What You Need to Know.