A new age has begun. Consumer behavior has been significantly altered by the epidemic. For instance, growing use of digital channels, the rise of online shopping, consumer brand switching, higher consumer expectations, and shifts in demand all have a significant impact on brands.
Transform Your Customer Loyalty Strategy
To successfully navigate these consumer behavior changes, brands need to evolve their customer loyalty and retention strategies. Reviewing the strategies below can guide brands to audit and reimagine their loyalty strategy in the post-pandemic marketplace.
Grow Your Loyalty Program Enrollment
- Only require and gather customer information that you plan on using.
- One easy way to entice more customers to join your program is to offer them an enrollment incentive.
- Amplify your brand reach by encouraging and rewarding customer interactions on social media.
- Don’t just focus on adding members. To get results, you need member participation. Create a customer development process to engage and grow the value of new members.
Educate and Reward Employees
- Make it easy for your staff to talk about the loyalty program’s benefits by giving them a script and/or a FAQ that includes the program’s benefits.
- Ensure your employees know your loyalty program’s benefits and that they don’t keep it a secret.
- Is enrollment in your loyalty program lagging? Create an employee contest to see who can enroll new customers.
- If participation and enrollment of customers are lagging, secret shop your loyalty program to see if there are training issues.
- Consider implementing a minimum loyalty program enrollment requirement for employees and make it a component of their employee evaluation.
- Create an Internal Communications plan so all stakeholders and employees know why the program is essential to helping the business achieve business objectives of reducing churn, increasing sales, and combatting competition.
Leverage Data Analytics to Understand Your Customers
- Analyze earning rates by customer segments to understand the engagement of your target segments.
- Have you analyzed your reward program redemption rates? Who redeems? What do they buy? Sometimes your rewards seem out of reach, and customers become disengaged.
- Loyalty program metrics need to include a dashboard of the customer, campaign, loyalty program across channels, and employee performance.
- Do you know which members earn rewards and are not redeeming them? Do you have a plan to engage them?
- Further, define your segmentation to better allocate discounts, rewards, benefits, and communications to achieve customer behavior change based on your business objectives.
Upgrade Your Loyalty Program Value Proposition
- Have you diluted your value proposition so that your customers don’t feel valued? Customers will participate in your loyalty program if they see value in the program and if they are engaged with the brand. Maybe it’s time to reevaluate how you reward and grow your best customers.
- Do you offer a mix of hard and soft benefits? Hard benefits reinforce the value, and soft benefits like experiential rewards build an emotional connection.
- Enhance your loyalty program by using surprise and delight tactics to show gratitude to your best customers.
- Tier your loyalty program so customers have a reason to give you a more significant share of their wallet and loyalty.
- Clarify the customers’ wants and needs. Research customers’ impressions of the current loyalty program, how it impacts their shopping behavior, and which benefits drive behavior. Use this customer feedback to update the loyalty program.
- Integrate gamification into the program to engage customers beyond transactions. One advantage of using games to drive loyalty is that gamers are more likely to be active on social media. This means they can spread the word about their engagement with others.
Communicate to Increase Engagement and Participation
- Include social networks in your customer communications plan. Loyal customers are your best advocates.
- Motivate ongoing, meaningful interaction with your brand to help customers recognize the value of your offering.
- Respond to messages and mentions on social media promptly. Keep in mind, that the majority of customers expect a same-day response from brands on social media.
- Keep the loyalty program top of mind online and offline. By keeping your program in front of shoppers, you can ensure that people are earning and redeeming the points.
- It’s essential to equip your employees with current customer data. Share customer insights across the organization and include a dashboard of results at the program, member, and employee levels.
- Develop customer-segment-driven communications to retain and grow customer lifetime value. Only by deepening the relationship with its best customers from multiple touch-points will a company be able to compete more effectively during the recession and grow its loyal customer base when a healthier economy returns.
- Listen to social chatter. Conduct searches on social sites to see what your customers are saying and how they feel about your loyalty program.
- Personalize messages to grow the share of customer purchases through relevant cross-sell and upsell — meeting more of the customer’s needs.
- Giving customers a choice of how to engage, whether through mobile apps, text, or another channel, increases the likelihood of that engagement.