Retailers are always on the lookout for ways to bring in new customers. But have you thought about how to cultivate closer relationships with your existing customers? Learn why (and how) you should build passion for your brand.
Why “feeling the love” is important
Customer love and customer loyalty go hand in hand. Customers who love your brand and believe in what it can do for them are more likely to:
- Spend more.
- Come back again and again.
- Recommend you.
- Promote your brand.
But how do you go from having a loyal customer who occasionally buys from you to one who enthusiastically raves about your products?
Put the customer first
Sure, that sounds like a given. But putting that old maxim into action means identifying customer pain points, listening to them when they request changes to products or services, really understanding what they’re looking for when they buy from you, and delivering on your promises.
It also means going above and beyond, and that doesn’t take much effort or expense: An exclusive coupon for a frequent customer or simply a thoughtful gift enclosed with their next order goes a lot further than you might think!
Tell a compelling story
You don’t have to be as imaginative as General Electric’s “My Mom” ad, which tells about some of the company’s innovations through the eyes of the child of a GE employee. The point is to tell a story of the good your company does — whether it’s helping customers with a specific problem, building community, or something else that would appeal to your brand advocates.
Working with a tighter budget? You can tell stories starring your customers — in fact, these are often some of the best stories. Consider ThinkGeek’s Customer Action Shots as an example of an easy way to let your fans tell their own stories. Did you ever think you’d have so much fun looking at pictures of people dressed up as Minecraft entities?
Stay in touch (and be yourself)
Having a successful catalog mailing now and then isn’t enough if contact with your customers is sparse and infrequent. Keep in touch using multiple channels of communication — not just with your catalogs and social media presence, but also through emails, order confirmations, newsletters, and blog posts. Be sure to let your personality shine through!
Finally, while you’re upping your communication game, don’t forget to give customers plenty of easy ways to talk back and interact; this can be achieved in the form of print (using augmented reality, QR codes, or an old-fashioned order form), as well as through other channels (such as digital editions, mobile apps, or social media).