Did you know April is International Customer Loyalty Month? In honor of this, today’s Friday Five post is dedicated to customer service tips and the best ways a business can create and cultivate customer loyalty:
1) Provide Products and/or Services People Love. Before any business can hope to achieve customer loyalty, it must first provide something of value. The more people love what you’re selling, the more likely they are to come back. If your product or service isn’t something people love, it will be extremely difficult to create loyalty, even if you do everything else right.
2) Treat Every Customer Like Gold. It’s difficult to be loyal to a business that doesn’t treat you well. Even if that business has a product or service you love, you won’t want to become a regular customer if you feel disrespected by its practices. Treating customers like gold is not difficult: The little things matter a lot and can make a world of difference. Here are a few simple ways to make your customers feel special:
- Smile! Even if you’re an online business, smile when you engage with customers. The happier and friendly you and your staff can be, the better your customers will feel when working with you.
- Make it easy to find solutions. If customers experience difficulties, come to the rescue quickly. Don’t make it difficult to resolve issues.
- Add personal touches. Hand-written thank-you cards, remembering someone’s name and sending a birthday note are just a few ways to make a customer feel like gold.
3) Create a Customer Loyalty Program. Creating a loyalty program is one of the best ways to build your pool of loyal customers. RingCentral has a Superfan program, through which it celebrates and features loyal customers. Some of the benefits of being is Superfan are getting your story featured on our company website and blog, early access to beta testing the newest features, ability to participate as guest speakers in webinars, and much more. The Superfan program is our way of giving thanks to our biggest customer advocates; to learn more info about becoming a potential Superfan email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. So, whatever your program’s structure, put time and thought into it and make sure it adds value.
Check out what some of our Superfans have to say about their experience with Ring Central service!
Interested in launching a program of your own? Try one of these loyalty programs:
- Punch cards – this type of program rewards people who shop often with discounted or free products.
- VIP clubs – give loyal customers exclusive access to events, sales and information.
- Mobile check-ins – take advantage of mobile apps like Foursquare and Facebook to reward those who come to your location often.
No matter what form your loyalty program takes, it must provide some type of reward/incentive. Just be sure that reward holds value to your customers.
4) Listen. The best way to determine what your customers want is to listen. Pay attention to what people praise, what they dislike and what suggestions they offer. Those doing business with you are in a position to let you know what works and what doesn’t. And when you react to what you’ve heard, people take notice. Your customers will be loyal to you if you’re loyal to them. Here are just a few ways to listen to your customers:
- Ask for feedback after a transaction
- Create a presence on Twitter and provide real-time responses
- Set up Google alerts for your business name to know when people are talking about you online
5) Always Be Honest. Don’t underestimate the value of honesty. The truth may not always be pretty, but it is appreciated. Mistakes happen, and you’ll be forgiven if you own up to them. Keep communication with your customers open.
Do you know what keeps your customers loyal? Tell us in the comments section!