We need to balance new customer acquisitions and repeat customers for running any business, big or small. A repeat customer is a direct measure of customer loyalty, and therefore customer retention ideas are part of the core business strategy. We can do some simple things to enhance customer stickiness—and here are four ways to improve customer loyalty.
# 1: Start privilege programs to make customers feel special and part of your business
It is imperative to make your customers feel privileged through loyalty and rewards programs. Along with value, customers also choose businesses that are concerned about them and care for them.
# 2: Discover your brand’s higher purpose and build a community of believers
A brand is kept alive by its believers. They are believers because they believe in the philosophy or the standpoint of the brand. The first thing to do is understand the existential essence or the higher purpose of your business, what your company does beyond what it is meant to do. Be in the business of creating a community of believers in your brand, and that community will keep you in business. But all these would start with discovering the brand's purpose, interiorising it and living it through.
# 3: Be honest and genuine always, and these will create a foundation of trust for your brand
Customer feedback are insights for a brand to look more closely at its business from different angles. We live in a world where information is at everyone's fingertips, and it's impossible to create an opaque box and hide there; instead, I would say we are all living in transparent glass boxes now. Be genuine, listen to your customers, redress their problems and create a well-connected sustainable business network that will thrive on trust and reliability.
# 4: Your customers own the business, and they run it; standing by them means standing by your company
Let the fundamental approach be an outside-in one, where you look at yourself through the eyes of your customers. That will bring in a new orientation to your business. Start communicating with them on their terms. Build an internal culture that is customer-centric. In a world where a customer can make or break your business, you have to be very receptive and quick in your actions to solve customer issues.
Go ahead, consciously focus on building customer loyalty and convert believers into evangelists who will spread the word through word-of-mouth/mouse!
Dileep Narayanan is the founder and brand mentor at Organic BPS, India’s first Purpose Branding Company. A post-graduate in management, Dileep is a speaker and thought leader on the “Doing Good is Good Business” concept.