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 min read

Customer Loyalty In 2021: 7 Strategies To Build Customer Loyalty

A post-pandemic era where your strategies need an overhaul to work. Your brand has changed, your consumers have transformed, even you have changed! Here are 7 strategies to Build Customer Loyalty today.

Enter a post-pandemic era where your strategies need an overhaul to work. Your brand has changed, your consumers have transformed, heck, even you aren’t the same person anymore!

Such a transformation calls for an updated roadmap, specifically when it comes to customer loyalty. After all,what is a business without its customers? (Hint: bankrupt!)

There’s no need to panic though. Fortunately, we have observations, reports, and strategies to make customer loyalty work for you in 2021! We’ll run you through the best practices to earnand build customer loyalty in 2021 for your business along with some great app recommendations to automate your processes!

What’s The Deal With Customer Loyalty Anyway?

While we have discussed this topic at length before, it’s imperative to discuss why a brand should have a well-rounded customer loyalty strategy before discussing the specific aspects.

The concept isn’t difficult to grasp: the market is competitive, and spending and consumption rates are decreasing, especially post-covid (unless you manufacture vaccines!).

The reason why your consumers are going to stick around with your brand is not merely because of your product or service, it is because your brand has differentiated itself and provided value beyond the product itself to the consumer.

It could be in terms of premium customer care, after-sales service, effective communication, loyalty programs -you name it. The strategy depends on your business model, but the core remains the same: your brand is what sells, not your product.

The Importance of Customer Loyalty

Customer loyalty is essential. While the loyal customers of your business might be only 20%, they are the ones that drive 80% of the revenue. It’s a fact.

You can picture it yourself. You find the services and products of a certain brand exceptional, you are likely to involve yourself in a repeat purchase. Not only that, you will find yourself turned into a brand evangelist, a brand ambassador - you might recommend that particular brand to your friends, you might gift your friends some products from there as well! Through this way, you’ll be making referrals and unintentionally increasing the sales and revenue of that company.

Wouldn’t you want to be at the receiving end of the revenues as well? That’s the difference a customer loyalty strategy can make for your brand. You will be able to retain the same benefits as discussed above, and even more!

Usually customers who exhibit brand loyalty, tend to offer constructive feedback for the companies. You can easily recruit these people for market research purposes or beta testing, which can help you evaluate in advance how your product may be received in the industry. We already talked about how to collect feedback originally.

Moreover, your loyal customers are the ones that will help you defend yourself from your competition. Your competitors may be offering the same products, but your strategy and programs are what will keep the revenue from your loyal consumers coming to you!

So, What Are The Best Customer Loyalty Strategies in 2021?

Here comes the good chunk - the customer loyalty strategies of 2021! We’ll take you from the basic offerings you should keep a check for and slowly mention the more exclusive and specific bits your business could offer to its customers.

  1. Adopt A Proactive and Transparent Approach

Traditionally brands react to customer needs when they voice a problem. Whether customers voice concern over social problems or a company-specific problem.

This approach has to shift 180 degrees now! There is no room for a reactionary approach to customer loyalty anymore. Chances are, if your brand works on a reactionary model, it will become irrelevant pretty quick.

What you need to do is revamp your strategy to make it more proactive. Predict and anticipate your consumers pain-points and concerns to address them before they are voiced as a complaint.

A customer-focused business would be one that realises the needs of their consumers in terms of assurance and connection in a market affected by the pandemic. Understand the hesitations and apprehensions of your consumers and troubleshoot quickly to remove those barriers. Customer is risk-averse and health conscious? Introduce contactless transactions and assure them of your protocols. Customer is recovering emotionally? Assure them that your brand is there connected to them, looking out for them.

  1. Relevant Customer Channels

How can you hope to create a loyal customer base when you aren’t even present at the channels they frequent? Whether we speak about your digital channels or your physical channels, your brand needs to be where your target audience is!

The best way of discerning this is to conduct an analysis of the buyer persona. Your ideal buyer’s demographics and psychographics - their interests, tastes, preferences and lifestyle. This will help you analyse which channels you need to create brand awareness to engage with your customer.

It doesn’t matter whether you find that channel worthy or not - your customer base loves it so you have to be there! There are companies missing out on the potential of reaching out to the Gen Z audience through TikTok only because of their reservations about the image of the application. Such companies are missing out.

In your chase for digital channels, don’t forget the physical ones! An omnichannel strategy in 2021 is one that is most effectively tailored to the diverse needs of consumers. Whether your consumer prefers a call with your customer service rep, or a chat to convey concerns, your brand has to provide it to them!

Remember, your brand’s channel isn’t only at the point of sales. Every touchpoint is essential increating the brand value for your customers!

  1. Audit Customer Touchpoints

We spoke about formulating consumer touchpoints; but it’s equally important to audit them as well. You need to ask yourself (and your consumers) these questions:

●     Are my consumers able to locate the points of contact well?

●     What is the conversion rate or response rate at those individual consumer touchpoints?

●     How satisfied are my consumers with the existing touchpoints?

●     How satisfied are they with the level of customer service received?

●     Do my touchpoints serve as a help in connecting to the brand, or as a barrier?

●     What can I do to innovate?

These are some questions which you need to continuously ask yourself and monitor and then alter your strategy based on the responses. When your consumer feels valued, when they feel their problems heard, their pain-points solved, they start formulating a connection to your brand. Your product becomes more than a mere offering - it transcends to become an experience in itself! This elevation comes with auditing and iterating your consumer touchpoints.

  1. Track those Numbers!

Audit your customer touchpoints and track those numbers! This involves for every aspect where your brand comes into contact with your potential target audience.

You should track and record the different KPIs as well as the ratios to figure out which strategy is working for you. While we are providing you with these useful tips, there is no general plan any business can follow as you can find out on your own dashboard.

Your business offers a unique proposition, and competes in a different industry. That calls for tracking of every KPI to assess the best channel, best approach, best social media strategy, best loyalty program, and so on, for your business. You can’t just be shooting in the dark!

  1. Higher Perceived Value

Consumers want greater value for their money. That’s a no brainer, right? But this perceived value goes beyond the value for money. Let’s take an example: DECEIM, the skincare company that launched the revolutionising The Ordinary Brand, provides all its consumers, and potential consumers, with a “free” evaluation of their skincare concerns and goals, and then prescribes a regimen based on their own products.

Consumers perceive a higher value because they are being instructed and directed on how to spend their money for their best benefit.

How can you reap the benefit for your company? Anticipate customer needs, guide them through every step of the consumer journey, offer service relationships for them to forge connections, and be there for them!

  1. Exceptional Customer Service

Customer service is one aspect where your customers can completely turn in (or against!) your favour. We touched upon the importance of having customer service and customer touchpoints, but the key word here is exceptional.

In this day of competition and decreasing attention spans, a mediocre customer service just wouldn’t cut it anymore. Nearly half the people switch a brand after a single bad experience.

Moreover, a research concluded that around 98% people believe that the initial response determines how a brand is perceived. This means not only does your brand need to be accessible, it also needs to be exceptional!

Moreover, brands that provide an after-sales service or free experiences are those that are able to differentiate themselves. Considering the Industry you compete in, you should conduct research and invest in provision of after-sales services - which couldbe as simple as seeking feedback or offering assistance .

  1. Invest in Tech

Companies can’t afford to not invest in technology anymore. The COVID-19 pandemic has also created a lot of economic uncertainties especially related to customer relationships and spending patterns. Technology promises the best solution for businesses, providing insight into virtually endless customer data.

We already discussed the digital marketing aspect of this, but this is not where technology ends. In fact, technology can make almost all of your company’s processes more efficient and accessible - you need to ask yourself which technology or which process needs that to provide you the ROI and the competitive edge to achieve it.

Apart from upgrading your processes, the perfect way to retain customers is to invest in data analysis to discern your consumer’s tastes and make well-informed decisions. Softwares can detect which consumers are likely to indulge in repeat purchase, and which consumers you should target with your efforts.

This means less spending on mass targeting, and more productivity and ROI on targeted spending and investment on consumers that are actually your target audience.

Technology can be scary if you don’t understand it, but if you let the fear grip you in this day and age, your company will be unable to grow.

  1. Reward Your Consumer Base

The final and extremely essential step to the customer loyalty strategy is to reward your consumer base for being loyal to your brand. Traditionally, the perfect way to achieve this is by issuing loyalty cards to your consumers, or multiple loyalty programs to achieve this desired objective.

But we’re in the post-pandemic era, and our strategies need to reflect the needs of our consumers. Consumers of today would rather be cardless, conduct contactless transactions, and have all their needs in one place. You know what we’re talking about don’t you - a loyalty app, of course!

Conclusion

Yollty is one such application that assists you in managing your clientele with a digital loyalty card. It combines all ofthe features we discussed above:

●     Social media strategy

●     Analytics

●     Feedback

●     Customise the loyaltyprogram based on your business needs

You can make use of such applications to effectively manage your customer loyalty program digitally.

It is true that 2020 was are defining moment, and it is up to you to make use of the trends that are being pushed because of the pandemic, and use them to grow our businesses!

By using the strategies we mentioned above, you will be able to build a loyal customer base in 2021. From constructing a valuable customer service with augmented products to formulating a loyalty program, we covered all aspects!

We hope this article assisted you in building and earning customer loyalty - for it is one investment that keeps on giving returns!

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