As we continue into what can only be described as a retention marketing boom – a time when virtually all businesses are trying to retain customers at lightning speeds while facing staffing shortages and other pandemic-related challenges -- brands must place emphasis on loyalty strategies to compete in today’s market.
Here are some strategies for retaining today’s consumers:
Make yourself more available. Putting more marketing dollars toward tactics that help consumers reach you more easily is vital. In addition to the standard phone and email communications, social media is shifting toward a live chat vehicle. Consumers are reaching out to brands on social media in pursuit of customer service.
Investing in resources that allow you to assist customers in this way can have significant impacts on customer satisfaction, issue resolution and ultimately, retention. It also helps you showcase your commitment to consumers – and gain their loyalty – before they purchase.
Invest in prompt communications. Prompt responses from a brand can foster strong relationships that drive loyalty. Whether it’s a human or digital response, consumers thrive on knowing they have been heard, and in receiving a timeline for an expected response. When loyalty is threatened, with a negative review for instance, timely communication is just as important as a timely resolution. This is especially true when the matter is not a quick-fix and requires a longer period of time to fully resolve.
Develop a monetized loyalty program. As consumers become more price-conscious, robust loyalty programs that offer monetary rewards for both loyalty and referring others will shine. Show you understand your customers by providing a loyalty program that resonates with them and speaks to their interests. Platforms that allow customers to choose their reward – such as choosing a charity to donate to, or a gift card to download – are gaining popularity.
Retain the right customers. Analyzing your internal customer data, using the attributes that you have captured, and then surveying that same group to fill any gaps, can help create a holistic picture of your ideal customer.
It is also essential to look at the lifetime value of your customers, as well as their average tenure with your company. It is equally as important to break them up into clusters based on different attributes, such as acquisition source or demographic, so you can shift marketing dollars to the most profitable groups. Those with a high acquisition cost and low lifetime value may not be right for your company.
The abundance of brands with big marketing strategies all trying to attract the same customers places significant power in the hands of the consumer. So as marketers navigate the impact that Omicron is having on their marketing strategies and prepare for future variants’ possible effects, it’s time to focus on robust retention strategies that build a bridge of loyalty between businesses and consumers.