The customer loyalty strategy represents a performance lever at the same level as acquisition and conversion. French companies have understood this well since 67.7% of them implemented this strategy in 2020, according to a Vertone study.
Retaining existing customers costs seven times less than running a new customer acquisition campaign. A loyalty strategy is based on customer satisfaction. When they are satisfied, consumers are more receptive to the brand’s commercial requests. In a context of high customer volatility, several methods are available to the company. This is the case, for example, with the survey or the loyalty program.
Definition of a loyalty strategy
Loyalty is a strategy based on customer satisfaction. It is easier for a company to maintain a privileged and lasting relationship with a satisfied customer. The objective of building loyalty is to sustain sales over the long term by increasing the customer engagement rate.
In a successful loyalty strategy, a customer becomes a true brand ambassador. He does not hesitate to make recommendations to those around him.
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A loyalty strategy benefits both the business and the customer. For the company, loyal customers strengthen its brand image and encourage the arrival of new ones. For a customer, loyalty programs allow them to benefit from discounts, exclusive offers or even gifts. Beyond the material aspect, they also fulfill his need to belong.
The 3 challenges of a loyalty strategy
Some marketing teams make the mistake of focusing all their efforts on winning new customers to the point of forgetting about existing customers. However, their loyalty provides many advantages to the brand.
Between loyalty programs and discounts, implementing a loyalty strategy comes at a cost. However, this is a long-term investment. Acquiring new customers requires a much higher budget.
According to a Bain & Company study, a 5% increase in loyalty increases company profits by 25 to 95%. In fact, a loyal customer consumes more than others.
In a context where consumers are very volatile due to the abundance of supply, the establishment of a community of loyal customers represents a considerable competitive advantage.
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2. Strengthen brand image
The loyalty strategy is considered an indirect communication campaign. For good reason, a loyal customer had a positive experience with the brand and its products. He is more inclined to make recommendations to his acquaintances.
This represents an asset for a company knowing that 60% of buyers ask their loved ones for information before taking action. Customer satisfaction thus contributes to positive word of mouth.
Improving customer relations involves collecting opinions on the company’s offering and service. The results of the questionnaire allow the latter to perfect its customer journey.
3. Positive impact on the employer brand
Customer satisfaction also affects internal stakeholders within the company. A positive brand image strengthens the feeling of belonging and employee engagement.
Some practical examples of this strategy
Even though some businesses are aware of the importance of loyalty, most don’t know where to trade. Here are 5 examples to put a loyalty strategy into practice.
To retain its customers, a company can act on its customer service. This involves reducing the processing time of requests, increasing the resolution rate from the first contact, improving delivery, etc.
Currently, customer experience depends on this aspect. According to a study conducted by Walker, 86% of buyers are willing to pay more to get a quality customer experience.
To provide the best experience, the company can take a few steps like being responsive in social media comments, using a chatbot, webchat, etc. These measures already make it possible to improve customer service without hiring additional people.
Surveys allow the company to identify gaps in the customer journey and resolve these issues. According to the Amarc Barometer, 69% of French companies already used the survey to measure customer satisfaction in 2019.
Several survey tools are accessible even with a small budget. The form can be sent following delivery and installation of a product, following a call to customer service, etc.
These questionnaires represent an effective way to collect information on the performance of each department in contact with the customer: delivery team, sales, after-sales service, etc.
The survey shows customers that the company takes their opinions into account and that it is making efforts to improve its services.
A customer feels special, they are not just another number when a brand sends them a message for their birthday, for example. Personalization represents a real advantage. However, writing individual messages is simply impossible.
To personalize messages as much as possible, the company relies on its customer data in order to perform fine segmentation. Customers are divided into several groups according to their purchasing history, location and even their preferences.
Personalized messages allow you to establish a special relationship with a customer. The latter feels connected with the brand and will be more motivated to repeat their purchase.
Customers appreciate the little surprises concocted by a brand. These attentions encourage them to repeat their purchase. The gift is generally a complementary product to its initial purchase. It can be free sample also.
The objective is to create the element of surprise so that the customer feels valued. The objective of this type of campaign is to get the customer used to the brand so that they come back more regularly.
Loyalty programs encourage customers to subscribe to a product or service. The subscription does not necessarily have to be paid. However, it provides some advantages such as reading exclusive articles, push notifications to inform you of promotions and good deals, etc.
A company can also implement a content strategy adapted to this subscription, such as sending a newsletter for example.
A loyalty program encourages consumers to interact with the brand. In return, they are rewarded with a points system allowing them to purchase a product.
The best-known example is Sephora. The more customers buy from the company, the more their loyalty points increase. They are divided into three categories according to their frequency of purchase. The most loyal receive the “Gold” card. Holders benefit from several advantages from the brand.