Loyal customers are not simply those people who return to buy your products because of low prices. If a competitor undercuts your price point, you can bet that those customers will turn away quicker than you can blink. Loyal customers are more than just repeat customers. Brand loyalty is an emotional connection that people develop with their favored companies, and in order to build brand loyalty for your business, you’ll need to think outside the box.
- Offer the Best Customer Experience
Some business concern themselves with creating the best possible product, while others focus on ways to improve customer service. In fact, these two aspects of business should not be considered as separate. Work on both simultaneously to offer the best possible customer experience. Consider the world of electronics. Apple holds one of the most loyal customer communities in the world, and they achieved this by offering excellent products in tandem with unmatched customer service. Apply this principle to your business as the first step to increasing brand loyalty.
- Cultivate a Friendly Community
Loyal customers identify with your brand, but they also identify with other users of your products. Consider the Harley Davidson motorcycle company. Harley riders buy more than just a high quality motorcycle–they buy an image associated with that product, and acceptance into a circle of other like-minded individuals. Think of creative ways that you can cultivate a community around your products. Organize special events to bring your customers together and help them connect with each other.
- Speak Out on Issues that Matter
There is an increasing tendency in today’s market for customers to make decisions about spending on moral and ethical grounds. Customers who shop at American Apparel clothing stores don’t do so because of the prices. In fact, those customers willingly pay more for a product that is produced by a company that takes a stand against sweatshop labor. They’ve made their decisions as consumers on moral, not economic, grounds. Think about issues with which you’d like to align your business, and come up with creative ways to implement this plan to increase brand loyalty.
- Share Your Unique Story
Every business has a unique story that can increase brand loyalty. The Wendy’s fast food chain has made great use of this concept in their own marketing campaigns. Commercials featuring founder Dave Thomas tout the history of the company and its never faltering adherence to the standards of quality. Stories like this resonate deeply with customers, making them loyal to your brand as they continually identify with your business and its unique history.
- Get Involved with Social Media
Whether your company is involved in text analytics software or fashionable sporting apparel, strengthening your presence on social media networks is a great way to increase brand loyalty. This new networking platform allows you to connect with your customers on a personal level, share stories and experiences, and gain nearly infinite potential for exposure through sharing. Best of all, your social media followers feel more like your friends than your customers–a relationship that is certain to increase brand loyalty for your company.