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How to create customer loyalty
Learn how to create a powerful brand that fulfills your customers’ needs
Establishing an effective way to generate leads is essential to your business. You need to be bringing in new customers; however, it’s also important to make sure you’re captivating your current audience, your existing customers.
There are brands that do this extremely well, like Apple, causing buyers to line up outside their stores when a new product is released. Other brands, like Blockbuster, folded when competitors came along – partly because they failed to innovate and partly because they didn’t master customer retention and loyalty.
What are you doing to establish customer loyalty? Here’s how you ensure your customers stay committed to your brand.
Create fans internally
Customers who are loyal are raving fans for your brand. But before you can turn your target demographic into raving fans, you need to make sure your internal team is in love with your product, service and company at large. How do you get your customers to feel like they’re truly part of your company’s mission? How do you entice a large group of people to feel not only happy, but thrilled to come to work every day?
It’s not enough to tell your employees they matter; you have to find ways to actively show them they’re important. Seems simple, right? Yet many business owners get so caught up in providing value to their customers that they lose sight of what matters to their employees.
Look at your company’s practices. Have you created a culture where your team feels valued and excited? Establish this by paying them fairly, providing benefits so they can take care of themselves and their families and make sure they’re getting the time off they need to rest and recharge. Those are the basics. You can go above and beyond by offering additional perks, like company retreats and catered lunches. Above all, make sure you treat each person on your team respectfully, and let them know how much you value their ideas and contributions.
Recognize your customers’ needs
Now that you’ve addressed any internal roadblocks, it’s time to think about your current customers. Not your ideal customers, but your real customers who are already purchasing what you’re selling. Who are they? What do they need not only in their lives, but from you specifically? If you have a successful business, it’s due to your clients purchasing your goods or services. How can you keep fulfilling their needs so they continue being loyal to your brand? If you sell incredible shoes for outdoor adventures, recognize that your customers don’t just need shoes – they’re looking for a reliable product that will accompany them on all of their adventures. They’re looking to reconnect with the outdoors and need something they can count on along the way.
Offer real value
You’re tuned in to your customers’ genuine needs and are on your way to creating a brand people are inherently loyal to. The next thing to assess is whether or not you’re adding real value to the lives of your customers. Are your outdoor shoes reliable? Are they made of eco-friendly materials? Are they under warranty? Do they cater to a variety of styles and sizes? You don’t want to sell something to people that will immediately rip or tear, because then no one would buy your product again. Similarly, you want to provide an excellent buying experience for your customers, because otherwise they’ll find somewhere else to spend their money.
You might feel like you’ve got everything covered. You’ve recognized your customers’ needs and are offering real value, but you’re not done yet. In fact, you’re never really done, because you always need to continue innovating. You should never consider your product complete, because changes will come that require you to fit the diversified needs of your customers. Is there an opportunity to not only offer hiking shoes, but shoes specifically designed for rock climbing? Are your customers dying for a kids line so they can get their children in on the brand?
Recognize ways to change and improve your product so you always stay relevant and necessary to your target audience.