In the digital era, savvy consumers can very easily compare brands and their price points, making it that much more difficult to drive loyalty. We caught up with industry expert Rosalind Hunter, to find out what businesses can do to engage their consumers and gain loyal customers.
1. What’s the first thing to consider when trying to develop loyalty and personalization
First, it’s important to focus on the what, rather than the how. What do you want to achieve? For example, you may want to look at things like: increasing consideration, growing share-of-wallet, encouraging cross-selling, and improving conversion. These then become your starting pillars from which you can start developing the how, i.e. a loyalty or personalization strategy.
2. What are the different touchpoints for implementing a loyalty and personalization strategy?
There are many different touchpoints along a customer’s journey where loyalty and/or personalization can really help you. From social media, product pages, delivery, and email marketing, there are many ways to engage consumers from consideration to purchase.
However, these differ from company to company, so it’s important to analyze what your focus areas should be, and where the really big value adds are.
3. What other ways are there to encourage loyalty if not through loyalty schemes?
When you start thinking about these topics, don’t automatically default to loyalty schemes or personalized promotions. There are many ways to drive loyalty among consumers. Loyalty schemes are useful, as they provide a reason to contact the customer and get to know them better, but they might not necessarily drive loyalty in themselves.
Gamification, for example, is another excellent tool. This is really about applying some typical elements of gameplay – points, competition, etc. – into your sales dialogue and the interactions you have with your consumer. That can really help engagement. You’re going from a purely transactional relationship with your customer, to something more interactive. It will enable you to entertain your consumers, while proving psychological cues for people to purchase more, and launching a wider level of engagement with your brand.
4. What would be your top tip for anyone looking to build an enhanced loyalty structure?
Here’s a really important point to contemplate: walk before you can run. It’s very easy to get stuck in the data and allow that to drive your strategy, which puts you at risk of neglecting the commercial needs of the business.