So you’ve got a business all set up and you don’t spare any expenses on advertising your business through all the different media available, from hoardings to newspapers and magazines to social media ad-space to make sure that news of your business reaches as many ears as possible, but you still can’t make a mark in the market and get loyal customers?
What are Loyal Customers?
Customer Loyalty can be measured to different degrees, and a loyal customer can be anyone ranging from –
- Customers who make repeat purchases,
- Customers who identify and resonate with your brand
- Customers who actively promote your brand and refer their close ones to it.
Loyal customers are the backbone of any successful business, so acquiring and retaining them should be top priority.
Why care about Loyal Customers?
No matter how much you advertise, all that money spent on it isn’t going to be a useful investment unless it translates to a rise in customer acquisition. The most probable reason for your advertising efforts not yielding the required results is the modern-day phenomenon of too much market-noise. The average consumer is bombarded by so many advertisements for different brands and products that they block out the whole bulk of information that overloads their brain. Think about the number of ads you would see on your way to and from work on a daily basis, and then think about how many of them you actually remember once you are back inside your house! Merely spending money on advertisement will not ensure that your marketing can rise above this market-noise and actually be registered by the customer instead of simply being ignored as yet another sales pitch floating around; you must find a way to reach the customer’s attention without relying on such obsolete and ineffective methods.
This is where the oldest and surest method of advertisement and promotion for any product or business comes in: word-of-mouth marketing. With word-of-mouth marketing there is no wastage of your marketing efforts since you do not rely on some passive form of advertisement such as print or digital ads, but rather on the communication between two humans, one-to-one, and the relations of trust between them. When you see an ad for a product you have never used, it is impossible not to have doubts about its quality and whether it’s the best you can get, and this is where the judgment of someone close to you, whose opinions you trust, and who has used the product themselves becomes a reference for you to make your choice. More often than not, we tend to trust these opinions of first hand users, especially if we know them personally, than any sales pitch or advertisement no matter how well made or presented. All the experts in marketing are aware that even the best ads in print, digital and video media cannot compare to word-of-mouth marketing in terms of leads conversion.
In short, there is literally no better way for your product or brand or business can be advertised than if an existing customer personally promotes your product out of their own wish to others who know and trust their judgment. The reasons for this form of marketing being the most effective are simple: people trust the opinions of their close friends and family, and they know that the person is not advertising the product motivated by earning money like TV channels and newspapers and websites do, but rather because they have personal first-hand experience as a customer and it is their satisfaction with your brand or product that has motivated them to promote it. We call such loyal customers who promote your business your Advocates, and your loyal advocates are the quickest and surest path to successful marketing, increased customer acquisition, and consequent increases in your revenue.
So What’s The Problem?
Unlike other forms of advertisement where all you need is money to avail whatever degree of advertising that you want, there is one fundamental problem with word-of-mouth marketing: being able to acquire and then retail such loyal advocates who will market your product by the word of their mouth. Since this method of marketing requires existing loyal customers to begin with, it only works for a business or brand that is capable of ensuring customer satisfaction. If your business or product is able to satisfy a customer, and if that customer is convinced that they are getting the best deals from you, then they stand the chance to become your advocates if they wish to help both you and their close ones. The problem however is that most people in this day and age are too busy to take time out to help others, and their is a very low probability of acquiring customers who will become advocates solely out of their own goodwill.
What To Do?
This brings about the need for some added motivation or cause for the satisfied and loyal customer to turn into an active advocate, and that is where platforms like Loyalie can step in. Loyalie allows for a business model whereby your loyal customers will become your advocates due to the added benefits they will receive by doing so. With customer loyalty reward programs like Loyalie, it is already easier to acquire and retain customers by rewarding their loyalty to your business, but with the new added Referral service, these loyal customers stand to gain even more in rewards simply by referring your brand to their close friends and family. By referring, the advocate earns attractive rewards from you, as does the new customer who is acquired through this referral, and everybody has a reason to be happy. As with all other aspects of business, the only sustainable model for business is where all parties feel happy and it is a win-win situation for everybody, the business, the advocate as well as the new customers.
Latest market research by the Harvard Business Review has revealed that a rise of as little as 5% in your customer retention and loyal customer base can result in anywhere between 25%-95% rise in your revenue. This is because loyal customers make up for most of a business’s revenue, even though they are normally the lesser percentage of all customers. . Through the Loyalie Referral program, your customer base can increase exponentially (along with your overall market presence) and much faster, as well as at a lower cost, than everyday advertising solutions. This is because ad-space in both physical and digital media is limited and already fully utilized, and advertising costs are rising, whereas in word-of-mouth marketing or the advertisement of your product done personally (at no cost!) by your loyal customers is not a monetized process or platform, and hence it has a much higher rate of leads conversion since it penetrates market noise, unlike sales pitches and adverts, and reaches potential customers directly and personally. You can easily see that the largest amount of market exposure can be gained with the least investment by using your loyal customers as your advocates, and it is just as obvious that this is the only way out of the vicious circle of trying to balance how much to spend on advertising your product versus how much increased revenue is caused by that advertisement.