There is no doubt that today 's small businesses need to fight harder to maintain customer loyalty.
At the NextCon17 conference hosted by Nextiva, a cloud communications company in Scottsdale, Arizona, from October 23-25, 2017, the customer experience was certainly at the center of attention.
But in terms of customer loyalty, Carol Roth, business consultant, media personality and entrepreneur, said in her presentation, "Customer loyalty 1.0 is old news."
Roth maintains that "customer loyalty is essential to attract and retain customers and should be at the heart of any marketing or sales activity." And this applies more widely to the customer experience. Certainly it is not new.
What is different is that today 's consumers are "overwhelmed" by the number of messages they receive from everyone, which has prompted them to ignore the messages of companies with which they do business.
The evolution of customer loyalty
To improve the overall customer experience, it is essential to understand the difference between Customer Loyalty 1.0 and Customer Loyalty 3.0.
Customer Loyalty 1.0
- Looks like corruption. The traditional purchase 9, get one free, is basically giving your customers a 10 percent discount, you have to work very hard to get, Roth said.
- Concerns the price. Small businesses should never compete on price. You can not compete on value, Roth added.
- Makes loyal customers the program and not the brand. The idea is to create loyalty to your business, said Roth C & rsquo; is the key to creating a better customer experience.
Customer loyalty 3.0
- Pay attention to the customer. You must know what your customers think.
- Create authentic relationships. It is about making customers loyal to the experience they have with your business whenever they interact with you.
- Understands the difference between spenders and shippers. It is not because a customer spends more money with you than you become your best customer. Customers who spend less, but share their positive experiences with others (shippers), can generate more revenue.
Once you understand how Customer Loyalty 3.0 works, how will you use it? Roth believes that you must follow the 5 pillars of customer loyalty.
The 5 Pillars of Customer Loyalty
When working to improve customer loyalty, as a more general approach to improving the customer experience, start with these five pillars.
Products and Services
Are your offers the best in your industry? The key is selling specific products and services that meet the needs of your customers.
- Do you own any intellectual property (intellectual property) that no one else owns?
- Is there a certain "stamp" that is attached to your business?
- How does your company specifically meet the needs of customers? What can they find there that they can not find elsewhere?
Do you put yourself in your customers' shoes? They ask, "I can get it anywhere, why should I shop with you?" One way to separate yourself from the pack is to offer the best customer service. In his presentation, Roth cited Nordstrom as the best example of this. People buy there, not necessarily for products sold by the company (that can be found in many places), but for service above and beyond that the retailer provides.
How can you follow Nordstrom's strategy to build this awesome customer experience? Roth suggested to business owners and managers to think about what "more" they can offer their customers. For example, offer complementary services, extend your hours or go on mobile – bring them your products or services. Or it could be as simple as bringing donuts to the next meeting you have with your customers, Roth added.
Community and Affinity Groups
People want to feel like they're part of something, that it makes them more "cool," "smarter," or more important. They want to connect with something bigger, or have access to something that they would not otherwise have. Does doing business with your company say something? Think of Harley Davidson, Roth said. There is a stamp about a Harley owner. They are automatically part of a culture.
This type of enhanced customer experience is not as difficult to implement as you think. How can you add value to your customers' lives? Can you form a brain group where to share experiences and learn from each other?
How can you turn the mundane into something extraordinary? The answer can be as simple as doing business with you fun. Or create a VIP category for your best customers.
Look at your business from a different perspective and look for ways to create a better customer experience.
Think about what else you can offer your customers. You can not be better off, but can you address their pain points? You must know what are the challenges your customers are facing. Are they running out of time? Is the money tight?
If you show them that you understand their needs, it makes your business important to them. Here are some ideas:
- Help your customers get more customers. Simply presenting your clients to each other, or directing them to them may increase their perception of you.
- Help them save money. Create special offers for VIP customers.
- Help them save time. Offer access to your store before regular hours once a quarter or so. Or create practical content, explaining how to best use your products.
- Facilitate them for them. Be their one-stop shop.
- Build your relationship. Never take your customers for granted. Keep showing them what they mean for your business.
Binding everything together, Roth advises a simple "formula of engagement":
Decipher what customers want. Apply the "pillars of loyalty". Then build relationships. Roth says that all of these things together make it easier for clients to do business with you. And this should improve the customer experience in the process.
Images: Rieva Lesonsky, Trends in Small Businesses
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