Of course, both of these goals are important, and both can lead to added sales. But one of them is much more costly to achieve. In fact, according to research, customer acquisition can cost five to six times as much as customer retention.
7 ways to build more brand loyalty
So, while you certainly don’t want to stop exposing new audiences to your outdoor brand and bringing them on board, you also don’t want to neglect efforts to retain the customers you already have.
Need some expert advice on how to build brand loyalty? Consider these seven leading brand loyalty strategies from the outdoor-marketing pros at TBA Outdoors:
1. Deliver consistent value
First and foremost, your customers expect a product/service that solves their problems and delivers a high level of quality — and to inspire true brand loyalty, your offerings need to exceed their expectations on both counts. Be relentless in ensuring that your brand’s offerings are the best that they can be. By consistently providing a product/service your customers can count on, over time you’ll put yourself in a good spot to earn their loyalty and keep them coming back.
2. Get to know your customers better
To inspire a sense of loyalty in your customers, your outdoor brand will need to do some of the same things people do on a personal level when making friends — learn their names, their stories, their interests, etc. By collecting/storing data about your customers and knowing these kinds of things, along with your customers’ buying histories and product/service needs, you can better personalize their experiences with your brand, helping to establish stronger brand connections. You can also tap into this knowledge to better inform your messaging to your customers and to strategically engage with them at each stage of the marketing funnel, helping move them farther along the path to purchase.
3. … and vice versa
In addition, to build more consumer trust in your outdoor brand — a near-universal prerequisite to building brand loyalty — you’ll need to let your customers know more about your business, what it stands for and what it’s up to. Make regular efforts to update your customers on brand news and developments (before they hit the headlines), and keep them filled in on any setbacks, too. In addition, let your customers know what you stand for as a brand, always striving to stay authentic in your messaging. If you stay true to your brand and its values, keep doing what you do best, and communicate authentically with your customers, your target audience will see the humanity in your brand. Your audience will also recognize your shared values and begin to form almost personal connections with your business — fostering the kind of comfort and connections that can lead to brand loyalty.
4. Prioritize customer service
Even the best brands’ products and services can present problems on occasion. And when a customer runs into an issue with one of your offerings, it’s never ideal — but it can offer you an opportunity to increase brand loyalty by being there for your customer and firmly standing behind your product or service. When a customer reaches out with an issue, respond quickly and do your best to provide a solution that makes things right. When troubles arise, these are often the moments when your brand can make the biggest impressions on its customers.
5. Offer a loyalty program
Loyalty programs come in a range of forms, from punch cards and points-based systems to tiered loyalty programs that move customers to higher levels (and bigger benefits) for added spending and repeat purchases. But no matter what type of loyalty/reward program your outdoor brand chooses to implement, they can all do the same thing well: incentivize customers to keep coming back. And by rewarding your regular customers with exclusive benefits and rewards, a loyalty program can also be highly effective at making customers feel that your brand appreciates them — which can help boost brand loyalty.
6. Regularly engage with your followers on social media
Social media can open a great line of communication with your customers, providing an avenue for you to share news about your brand, serve up special offers, offer behind-the-scenes info about your brand and more. You can directly engage with your brand’s followers on its various social media channels. Examples would be responding to followers’ comments and quickly answering consumers’ questions. Additional examples would be running social platform-based contests and giveaways, asking your audience questions and encouraging their input, and consistently posting content that is relevant to your followers and adds value for them — you can form stronger, more personal connections with them … and foster added brand loyalty.
7. Encourage customer feedback … and act on it
By actively seeking input from your customers about your products, services, customer service and even ideas for new brand offerings, you can show them that you value their opinions and are always striving to better serve them. That also makes them feel that they have a stake in your business, inspiring more brand loyalty. Such requests can come in the form of surveys, review requests and even direct communications such as face-to-face conversations when a customer comes into your brick-and-mortar store locations. But to truly inspire loyalty from your customers, you must demonstrate your loyalty to them first. When a customer’s feedback proves to be truly useful and insightful, act on it. And when you do make improvements to your products and/or services based on customer feedback, let consumers know about what you changed, why you did so and where the idea came from. Consumers are more likely to develop a devotion to brands that truly value their input and are willing to act on it.
Could your outdoor brand use some expert help in its efforts to boost brand loyalty among existing customers? The marketing pros at TBA Outdoors have helped a long list of clients do just that — and lots more — to boost their bottom lines. Whether you’re seeking assistance in areas ranging from analytics and creative to social media, e-commerce, public relations and more, our fully integrated marketing firm can deliver it — all in one place.
To explore how we can help your outdoor brand amplify the effectiveness of its customer-retentions efforts and all of its marketing campaigns, reach out to our team of outdoors-obsessed marketing professionals today.