There’s no disputing the value of retaining customers. But how exactly can you do it?
Here’s why loyalty matters and how to use your paid campaigns to not just drive sales but also build long-term relationships with loyal customers.
Why Customer Loyalty is Important
Why exactly does customer loyalty matter so much? After all, you could just focus on getting new customers, right?
Here are a few reasons why customer loyalty is critical to long-term business success.
1. Save on Marketing Expenses
Marketing costs money. Your exact budget will naturally vary based on your industry and size. However, the more competition you have, the more money you will need to spend to grab your market’s attention, create connections, and drive sales.
This makes sense—your current customer already knows about your brand, and at some point, they decided that your product or service was the right one for them. Cultivating relationships and building customer loyalty will help ensure they don’t only buy from you once, but continuously.
2. Improve Your Reputation
Word-of-mouth marketing is the most effective marketing strategy out there. This is because people are far more likely to trust their friends, family, and other consumers over brands.
Creating a trusted and reputable brand takes a lot of time and effort. Suppose you’ve already managed to show your existing customers that you are trustworthy. In that case, they can act as brand advocates by telling their family and friends about your amazing products or services.
3. Drive Sales
Loyal customers spend more money, and they are far more likely to tell their friends and family about you. That valuable connection will naturally lead to an increase in sales.
Focusing your efforts on customer loyalty can also help you better understand your customers, improving your sales strategy, marketing efforts, and even guiding product development.
How to Build Customer Loyalty With Paid Marketing Campaigns
Whether you communicate through social media, your company blog, or email newsletter, it has never been easier to stay connected.
How can you use this to build customer loyalty?
First, it’s essential to understand the value of platforms like social media to marketers.
Before the digital age, things were less complicated.
To get your market’s attention, all you had to do was run ads on TV, flyers, or relevant newspapers and magazines.
The challenge was that communication was all one-sided. You could talk at your customers, but not with them.
Now, the conversation can be two-sided.
With social channels such as Instagram and Facebook, you can run ads and get instant feedback from your customers. You can share when things are back in stock or answer questions about features.
This can be beneficial because with a limited number of characters, sometimes it’s difficult to say everything about a particular product or service.
When you engage with customers in the comments, you can provide additional information that wasn’t shared in the ad.
Just make sure to pay attention to your customers’ needs, wants, and concerns. This information gives you a clearer picture of who they are and what they need—informing all your future marketing efforts.
2. Be Genuine in Ad Copy
At its core, customer loyalty is all about building trust between you and your customers. To achieve this, you need to be genuine, honest, and transparent.
Transparency has become increasingly important to consumers, and this is something marketers need to keep in mind.
Sprout Social surveyed 1,000 US consumers and found that 86 percent say transparency from businesses is more important than ever before.
What does being “transparent” actually mean?
From the same survey, 59% of consumers defined transparency as businesses that were open with them, 49% highlighted honesty, and 53% said clarity.
In practice, this is as simple as being honest about your product or service.
Every product or service has certain limitations, and there’s nothing wrong with letting your customer know about them. If a customer reaches out to you or comments on an ad, it’s essential to share what your product can do and what it can’t do.
In addition to being trustworthy, be genuine while communicating with customers. Depending on your industry, this might mean using GIFs, casual language, or using industry slang.
Have you ever received a generic automatic email or text response from a company?
Did you feel like you were communicating with a brand? Or did you feel like you were speaking with a real person who knows and understands your needs?
People seek real connections with brands.
They don’t want to feel like they’re just another customer.
That’s why it’s essential to have someone in your team respond to customer questions or queries on your social channels. If you use automated responses (like a chatbot, for example), add a little personality to personalize the message instead of sending out a generic or robotic answer.
3. Show Appreciation
Above all, remember that your customer is a human being, and human beings want to feel appreciated.
Are they parents? If so, do they have small kids or grown kids?
Are they small business owners, employees, or do they have a few side hustles?
What type of books do they read?
All this information will help you understand which ad copy will make the most sense.
For instance, if you own an e-commerce store and sell products for pregnant women and mothers with babies, you can create an ad focused on specific products that match their child’s current age.
One of the best ways to gain more ideas as to what existing customers are looking for is to pay attention to your most loyal customers’ interactions with your brand.
Look at the pain points they raise when interacting with you on social media or other channels.
For example, Harry’s doesn’t have to go far to see what scents their customers want. It’s right there on their ads.
Even just saying “Thanks for trying our product!” or “Glad you had a good experience!” when someone comments on an ad can make all the difference.
4. Provide Incentives
Sometimes your customers need a little motivation to stay loyal to your brand, even though they’ve bought from you before.
Although your product or service may be great, you still have a lot of competition. With the digital age, your customers are likely seeing other brand’s ads and engaging with them on social media.
So, how do you use paid ads to keep competitors from winning them over?
You can start with incentives!
Incentives have long been a key component for encouraging customer loyalty. Think of them as a way to give your customers another reason to love your brand and stick around.
Consider using paid ads to offer incentives such as:
Store Credits and Discount Codes
In your ads, highlight the discount or credit amount your customers will receive if they continue purchasing from you. Make it feel special by offering it for “loyal customers” or as a “welcome back” offer.
If you’re selling a product with an upgrade (like an app or monthly membership box), offer current customers an incentive, like a discount or free shipping, if they decide to stick with your product and get the upgrade.
Remind Customers About the Points They’ve Earned
Did you know that 43% of rewards expire before they are redeemed? To ensure that your customers redeem their rewards, consider using retargeting ads to remind them to use their points before they expire.
5. Highlight Social Proof in Ad Copy
Social proof is essential to inspire customer loyalty and encourage new sales.
Research shows that reviews impact the buying process.