Increasing Customer Loyalty Pays Off in the Long-Haul

John Krautzel
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Building customer loyalty helps your business on two fronts. First, you have a steady stream of regular sales from a group of people who truly value your products or services. Second, those same loyal customers tell others how much they love your business, bringing in new customers who have already heard good things about you. This free advertising often leads to new loyal customers and helps your business grow.

A strong loyal customer base of people who are enthusiastic about your products helps you weather periods of decreased demand and economic downturn. The ideal loyal customers don't simply have a preference to do business with you; they find doing business with you essential to their happiness or well-being. With the digital age making it easier than ever to find alternative retailers, prioritizing customer loyalty is increasingly important to keeping your business healthy. Focus on these key areas to build your loyal customer base.

Loyalty-Centered Marketing

Have your marketing team design every campaign with an eye toward building customer loyalty. Entice new customers through their imagination as opposed to using persuasion. It's easy to get a new customer; it takes more work to keep a customer for the long haul. Consider every interaction with your brand to be part of the process of creating loyal customers. The best campaigns draw customers in through interaction to make your product an indispensable part of their lives.

Focus on Beginnings and Endings

People remember beginnings and endings the best, so make sure that yours are spectacular. Beginnings need to draw people in, getting them engaged with your brand right away. Create beginnings that ask for a response or that have an element of mystery to build curiosity. Great service should also include strong beginnings. This includes those things your customers see when they pull up at the door or the very first things they hear during a phone interaction. Use enticing and visually interesting point-of-purchase materials to build interest, and then greet each visitor with a helpful and friendly attitude.

Endings are even more important than beginnings because customers leave with them. Your goal is for customers to leave each interaction satisfied and happier than when they came. Even if there were problems during an interaction, a strong ending saves the situation for better customer loyalty. On the other hand, if you build up customer expectations and don't deliver, your customers leave dissatisfied, and they might go elsewhere with their business next time.

Talk to Your Customers

Consider every current customer a potential loyal customer, and engage them in interactions to build your relationship. Use a multi-channel approach, including advertisements, social media, email and events to build engagement. When you get poor reviews, take suggestions to heart. When you get rave reviews, encourage your customers to post their opinions on social media sites to bring in more customers and further build your customer loyalty.

Customer loyalty keeps your customers coming back and brings in new customers through word-of-mouth advertising. Increase customer loyalty by creating loyalty-centered marketing campaigns, providing great service and talking to your customers to better meet their needs. Make use of your loyal customers by asking them to give you good reviews and share their personal stories involving your brand.

Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles at


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