When you think about your favourite brands, who springs to mind? Is it the local coffee shop on the corner, or perhaps that little boutique store in the next suburb? Now, consider why you love it. Chances are that they’ve nailed their customer retention strategies. This may be through a number of ways, including offering discounts on your birthday and welcoming you to their community.
Building a strong customer retention campaign takes these retention strategies and brings to life something that will create brand loyalty. This blog will focus on how to nurture your existing clients and customer retention strategies you can use in your next campaign.
What is customer retention?
Customer retention is a crucial metric to include in your reporting. This information measures customer loyalty or the ability of an organisation to keep its customers over time. It can also identify the number of loyal customers, reflect or predict satisfaction, repurchase behaviour, customer engagement and emotional ties to a brand. Customer retention’s role in a business is vital because the cost of acquiring new customers is much higher than retaining existing customers.
To learn more about customer retention, read our blog, Attention! Let’s talk Customer Retention!
Customer retention strategies
As a business owner, having a solid customer retention strategy in place will help your business thrive. Here are some of our top tips if you’re trying to put together a strategy (but feeling a little stuck!).
Strong onboarding process
A strong onboarding process is one of the best things you can do for new customers to ensure you retain their business. If a user has a very negative onboarding experience, they’re going to assume the rest of your product is designed just as poorly and probably aren’t going to stick around too long. Invest time here to make sure the onboarding process is a smooth one.
Offer surprises or ‘gifts’
Who doesn’t love getting that discount code on their birthday or a message prompting $20 off for products left in your cart?! In all seriousness, though, when you offer your customers something valuable that isn’t planned (i.e., not something like a storewide sale), it shows your audience that you are willing to go above and beyond. It doesn’t need to be a discount or dollar-off value either. It can come in the form of motivation. Surprises motivate customers, and appreciation is a strong motivating factor for hard work. The surprise may be something as simple as a handwritten thank you note that shows your gratitude.
Build brand loyalty and trust
Increasing brand loyalty and building trust are two of your business’s most important things. Any romantic relationship you’ve been in that hasn’t had trust (we’re guessing) hasn’t gotten very far. It’s the same here, except your business and the customer are the two in the relationship. Customers will switch to your competitors when they discover that you’re not trustworthy. Nothing scares customers more than bad experiences. Even worse than that, they’ll spread their bad experience with others. Some key stats to note about brand loyalty:
- 52% of unsatisfied customers spread the word about the bad service they received.
- 35% of customers ceased all business with the company that wronged them.
- 83% of customers will recommend your brand to others if they trust the brand.
- 82% of customers will stick to your brand if they trust it.
Nurture your community
Once you’ve got your community, it’s time to nurture it! Good customer service across all touchpoints is vital. This includes sending regular updates without appearing spammy, responding quickly to customer enquiries and frequently posting on social media. Other essential aspects of the ideal customer experience include:
- Simple purchasing process.
- Live tracking ability.
- In-depth product information.
- Consistent information across all channels.
Leverage customer feedback
Lastly, utilising customer feedback to improve on areas of your business is extremely valuable (and often underrated). Asking your customers to answer what you did right and, more importantly, what you did wrong is one of the best ways to gather feedback on your product and your users’ experience. Sending satisfaction surveys will show your customers that you value their opinion and are willing to listen to any feedback they may have.
Customer retention campaigns
When turning these strategies into customer retention campaigns, there are a few ways you can go about it.
Referral-based customer retention campaigns
This type of campaign is a great way to encourage word-of-mouth marketing. It’s also an excellent way to nurture existing customers whilst acquiring new customers. It’s an incredibly effective method, with 78% of B2B marketers saying that referral programs generate good or excellent SQLs (sales-qualified leads).
Example: Airbnb ran a successful referral-based campaign that incentivised current users to recommend their app for a reward. When a current Airbnb user referred a friend to the app, they both received a $20 voucher (the referee had to use the code for both parties to receive the reward).
Image source: CleverTap
Onboarding customer retention campaign
These campaigns are crucial as onboarding is the first step in a customer success program and can help alleviate friction or frustration if you invest time into helping users understand your product/service and its benefits. A staggering 55% of users say they have returned a product because they didn’t know how to use it. Throughout the onboarding process, 59% of users say they prioritise personalisation over the speed of onboarding.
Example: MyFitnessPal created a comprehensive onboarding process for new users on its app. It’s designed to encourage new users to log something they’ve eaten. From here, it immediately allows them to experience the ease of counting calories within the app with no guesswork or approximation. Rather than showing videos of how to use the platform, they guide users through the setup and have them enter key information to give them a starting point that they can easily reference for self-service information later.
Image source: CleverTap
Loyalty and rewards-based retention campaign
Rewarding your existing customers is one of the best ways to nurture them. At their core, customers want to feel valued and spend money on brands they enjoy. With 58% of loyalty program customers purchasing at least once a month, this is why loyalty programs work so well. The loyalty program can work in a number of ways. It could be through a points system or a discount after a number of purchases.
Example: Starbucks is one major company that smashes it out of the park with its loyalty system. Their app features a simple loyalty system that rewards users with stars for each order placed, which can then be redeemed for free food and drinks.
Image source: CleverTap
Customer retention campaigns are a fantastic way to nurture your existing database and build brand loyalty and trust. While these campaigns are only a few examples of ways to strengthen your brand loyalty, there are many more. If you’re looking to run a customer retention campaign but aren’t sure where to start, send us an email or DM us today.