You probably know people in your life that are loyal brand followers. Some people are Nike fans, others are Adidas fans. People like choosing what’s familiar and what they trust. If you’re a small business owner trying to establish and grow your brand loyalty among your clients, there are a few tips and tricks of the trade you should know. Below, we’ve written a guide to brand loyalty and how to build it so you can create a strong and happy customer base that comes back time and time again.
Why should I care about brand loyalty?
Let’s start with some statistics to show you the true value of customer loyalty. To start, it costs 5-10 times more to gain a new customer than it does to retain an old one. Plus, your existing customer base tends to spend 67% more than a new customer who is unfamiliar with your product or service.
In 2010, Facebook did a study analyzing brand loyalty trends that surveyed over 14,000 people. Of those respondents, the survey found that over ¾ of them were returning to the same brands repeatedly – and it wasn’t limited by industry. It was true across businesses like restaurants, airlines, hotels, auto insurance, and grocery stores. As you can see, brand loyalty is incredibly important.
How do I build brand loyalty and repeat customers?
- Have a great product or service: First and foremost, it’s important to walk the walk. If you have an inferior product or an inferior service, it’s going to be difficult to convince first-time customers to try out your brand again. With so many products and services flooding the marketplace, first impressions can make or break your brand.
- Create a trustworthy business model: Make sure that your business has products and services offered at a fair market price and focus on convenience for customers. Follow up with first-timers, send out surveys, and ensure that your customers have channels to provide feedback, bad or good.
- Set up social media: If your business isn’t on Facebook and Instagram, it’s incredibly important to get those accounts started. It provides interested parties with a way to keep up with news and changes to the business or new services or products that are being offered. If you have a website for your business, you may want to consider starting a blog or a newsletter so your customers can learn about new and exciting developments.
- Give your customers a reason to come back: Send a 10% off coupon to customers who are first-timers or another kind of intro bonus. This might be the incentive needed to encourage a lukewarm customer to try your brand again.
- Stay relevant: When you find that you have a large customer base who keeps coming back again and again, don’t get complacent. It’s important to always understand what your competitors are doing and how the industry is changing.
- Send thank you gifts: Do you have loyal customers who contribute a lot to your business? Consider offering custom Yeti tumblers with your logo or business name emblazoned on them. Focus on practical, functional gifts over ornamental to ensure they don’t end up in the trash.
- Keep track of customer birthdays: A birthday is a special time for your customer so why not show your client that you also think it’s important! Send a birthday surprise during the month of your customer’s birthday with a special offer.
- Establish channels of communication and use them: It’s great if you have a Facebook or Instagram or feedback area on your website but if you never respond, then there’s no point. Make sure that your customers know that you’re listening to their feedback and nip any issues in the bud.
As a new business owner, there are many overwhelming tasks you have to deal with like answering emails, running your store, and other business-critical tasks. But one of the most important action items on your to-do list should be to create a strategy for brand loyalty. You might want to consult with professionals or even hire a consulting agency, but regardless of the route you take, don’t ignore it – it’s a crucial part of your business. After all, your business is nothing without your customers.