#SWAAYthenarrative

How Can a Brand Build a Loyal Customer Base?

Business

For every single sector of the market, no matter how niche or broad, there are dozens of competitors. So, especially for newer businesses, it can be difficult to build a base of loyal customers. The trick to increasing customer loyalty is to understand your target market and find out what would make them choose you over your similar competitors. But having a strong product offering just isn't enough. Businesses actively need to be finding ways to build relationships with customers so that they remain loyal, become positive spokespeople for the brand, and are ready to hear about the future of the company.


Targeting New Customers

Before you have any customers to become loyal, you need to go out and get them. Rewards for new customers are a quick win for businesses to attract new customers for an initial point in time to generate some quick sales. These customers might not be convinced to remain once their new customer offer expires, but by then they'll reach out to another crop of new customers, keeping the cycle alive.

Phone contracts and TV/internet packages are famous for reaching out to new customers with deals that their current customers baulk at. UK TV providers Sky and Virgin both have strong competing offers for new customers who are looking to sign up to the TV packages. Gyms are also famous for appealing to those who aren't members. All three are difficult to get out of once the cooling off period is over, so keep customers due to the hassle it would take for them to transfer.

Rewarding Long-term Customers

Long-term customer rewards are also important. While new customer offers work to entice people to use the brand initially, keeping their engagement throughout is also critical in creating a long-lasting relationship. By rewarding customers who have stayed with the brand loyally over a period of time, the relationship can further be forged.

Long-term customer rewards are also important. While new customer offers work to entice people to use the brand initially, keeping their engagement throughout is also critical in creating a long-lasting relationship. By rewarding customers who have stayed with the brand loyally over a period of time, the relationship can further be forged.

Slotsjudge rewards, for example, include a points system that benefits gamers not for playing the games, but for being active in the gaming community. Points can be won for publishing blog posts, answering queries, registering accounts and referring friends. The loyalty comes not in the way of the points, but in the building up of a real community atmosphere, which will create a more conducive environment.

Rewarding Big Spenders

Supermarkets use loyalty cards that give points for purchases, which can be redeemed later for treats, or money-off shopping. The more you spend there, the more points you get and potential for rewards. But, occasionally, they also give vouchers for a specified amount off the next shop. They understand that the target market wants bargains, and offering just 15% off the next shopping bill would be enough to increase repeated custom. The supermarket, in the mind of the customer, will have the reputation for being customer-friendly and good value, as well as trying to help out their customer base. People would be more likely to go to a supermarket they have a loyalty card for than one they don't.

Developing Brand Ambassadors

Another trick to increasing customer loyalty is by creating ambassadors for the brand of your customers. One way to do this is through discounts for referring friends.

Not only will the current customer become a beacon for your brand and signal the benefits of your brand and products through word of mouth marketing, which has a high conversion rate.

But they will also encourage their friends, who may then do the same. By feeling like part of the club by gaining benefits for themselves, they will be more likely to speak and act favourably to the business.

Rewarding Impulse Purchasers

The technology used to shop online is beneficial for companies to find which of their customers are more inclined to buy what they have had in their baskets or what they have been looking at. So sending emails with those products could result in sales. Basket abandonment is also something brands take into account in order to ensure customers are loyal, by occasionally offering incentives to make immediate purchases to those people who have placed something in their e-shop basket but not bought it. This creates a connection between the brand and the customer as the customer perceives the brand to be giving them something extra. But, it is all factored into sales targets and profit margins.

Consistent Communication

Building customer loyalty is difficult, and even though there are a number of tricks available in your arsenal to do it, many are reluctant to appear to be shaving so much money off their products all the time. There's a fine line between happily appeasing customers and ensuring your business doesn't look like there's always a sale on and that you are making a decent enough profit.

Finding the customer loyalty programmes that work to ensure you succeed in business and keep customers happy is the key to any successful business.
3 Min Read
Lifestyle

Tempted To Dial Your Ex: 5 Ways To Know Whether Or Not You Should Contact An Old Flame

Thinking of ringing up your ex during these uncertain times? Maybe you want an excuse to contact your ex, or maybe you genuinely feel the need to connect with someone on an emotional level. As a matchmaker and relationship expert, I was surprised at the start of the coronavirus quarantine when friends were telling me that they were contacting their exes! But as social distancing has grown to be more than a short-term situation, we must avoid seeking short-term solutions—and resist the urge to dial an ex.

It stands to reason that you would contact an ex for support. After all, who knows you and your fears better than an ex? This all translates into someone who you think can provide comfort and support. As a matchmaker, I already know that people can spark and ignite relationships virtually that can lead to offline love, but lonely singles didn't necessarily believe this or understand this initially, which drives them straight back to a familiar ex. You only need to tune into Love Is Blind to test this theory or look to Dina Lohan and her virtual boyfriend.

At the start of lockdown, singles were already feeling lonely. There were studies that said as much as 3 out of 4 people were lonely, and that was before lockdown. Singles were worried that dating someone was going to be off limits for a very long time. Now when you factor in a widespread pandemic and the psychological impact that hits when you have to be in isolation and can't see anyone but your takeout delivery person, we end up understanding this urge to contact an ex.

So, what should you do if you are tempted to ring up an old flame? How do you know if it's the wrong thing or the right thing to do in a time like this? Check out a few of my points before deciding on picking up that phone to text, much less call an ex.

Before You Dial The Ex...

First, you need to phone a friend! It's the person that got you through this breakup to begin with. Let them remind you of the good, the bad and the ugly before taking this first step and risk getting sucked back in.

What was the reason for your breakup? As I mentioned before, you could get sucked back in… but that might not be a bad thing. It depends; when you phoned that friend to remind you, did she remind you of good or bad things during the breakup? It's possible that you both just had to take jobs in different cities, and the breakup wasn't due to a problem in the relationship. Have these problems resolved if there were issues?

You want to come from a good place of reflection and not let bad habits make the choice for you.

Depending on the reason for the breakup, set your boundaries for how much contact beforehand. If there was abuse or toxic behaviors in the relationship, don't even go there. You can't afford to repeat this relationship again.

If you know you shouldn't be contacting this ex but feel lonely, set up a support system ahead of time. Set up activities or things to fall back on to resist the urge. Maybe you phone a different friend, join a virtual happy hour for singles, or binge watch Netflix. Anything else is acceptable, but don't phone that ex.

Write down your reasons for wanting to contact the ex. Ask yourself if this is worth the pain. Are you flea-bagging again, or is there a friendship to be had, which will provide you with genuine comfort? If it's the latter, it's okay to go there. If it's an excuse to go back together and make contact, don't.

Decide how far you are willing to take the relationship this time, without it being a rinse and repeat. If you broke up for reasons beyond your control, it's okay. If your ex was a serial cheater, phone a friend instead.

If there was abuse or toxic behaviors in the relationship, don't even go there. You can't afford to repeat this relationship again.

As life returns to a more normal state and you adjust to the new normal, we will slowly begin to notice more balance in our lives. You want to come from a good place of reflection and not let bad habits make the choice for you. Some do's and don'ts for this time would be:

  • Do: exercise ⁠— taking care of you is important during this time. It's self-care and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
  • Do: shower, brush your teeth, and get out of your sweats.
  • Don't: be a couch potato.
  • Don't: drink or eat excessively during this time. Again, remember to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
  • Do: think positive thoughts everyday and write down the 3 things you are grateful for. Look at the impact of John Krasinksi's SGN. It's uplifting and when you feel good, you won't want to slide backwards.
  • Don't: contact a toxic ex. It's a backward move in a moment of uncertainty that could have a long term impact. Why continue flea bagging yourself?