Strategize and Plan For Loyalty!
These four factors will greatly affect your ability to build a loyal customer base:
1. Products that are highly differentiated from those of the competition.
2. Higher-end products where price is not the primary buying factor.
3. Products with a high service component.
4. Multiple products for the same customer.
1. Market To Your Own Customers
Giving a lot of thought to your marketing programs aimed at current customers is one aspect of building customer loyalty.
When you buy a new car, many dealers will within minutes try to sell you an extended warranty, an alarm system, and maybe rust proofing. It's often a very easy sale and costs the dealer almost nothing to make. Are there additional products or services you can sell your customers? Three years ago my house was painted, and it's now due for another coat. Why hasn't the painter called or at least sent a card? It would be a lot less expensive than getting new customers through his newspaper ad, and since I was happy with his work I won't get four competing bids this time. Keep all the information you can on your customers and don't hesitate to ask for the next sale.
2. Use Complaints To Build Business!
When customers aren't happy with your business they usually won't complain to you - instead, they'll probably complain to just about everyone else they know - and take their business to your competition next time. That's why an increasing number of businesses are making follow-up calls or mailing satisfaction questionnaires after the sale is made. They find that if they promptly follow up and resolve a customer's complaint, the customer might be even more likely to do business than the average customer who didn't have a complaint.
3. Reach Out To Your Customers!
Contact with current customers is a good way to build their loyalty.
The more the customer sees someone from your firm, the more likely you'll get the next order. Send Holiday cards, see them at trade shows, stop by to make sure everything's okay. Send a simple email newsletter to your customers-tell them about the great things that are happening at your firm and include some useful information for them. Send them copies of any media clippings about your firm. Invite them to free seminars or exclusive events. The more they know about you, the more they see you as someone out to help them, the more they know about your accomplishments-the more loyal a customer they will be.
Recommended Tool: Loyal Email
The Loyal Email solution enables businesses of any size to communicate directly with customers via permission-based email campaigns which helps companies save time and money while increasing sales and customer loyalty.
This solution is geared towards companies whom want to harness the effectiveness and cost efficiencies of email communications but do not want the hassles of managing their own program in-house. Loyal Email is a 100% managed service which doesn't require any additional investment in hardware, software or personnel. They take care of everything so you don't have to. Get your own custom designed email marketing and customer loyalty program at http://www.loyalemail.com
Wishing you great business success,
About the author
Chris Swemba is the founder and CEO of Kinetica Media, an internet marketing company that develops and implements affordable internet marketing and website design services. Please visit http://www.kineticamedia.com for more information on our customer-generating products and services.
Author: Chris Swemba