Customer loyalty doesn’t just develop overnight. It’s something that you need to carefully establish over days, weeks, months, and even years. Creating long-term loyalty means having a deep understanding of the relationship between your target audience and brand.

Those who understand and develop long-term loyalty will reap major benefits. Here’s a few data-backed examples.

  • 75% of loyal customers go out of their way to recommend brands. (InMoment)
  • Customers with an emotional connection to a brand spend $699 annually on average. This compares to an average of $275 for standard, satisfied customers. (Motista)
  • As long as they’re receiving a more personalized brand experience, 87% of customers are willing to share their activity details. (Bond)

Sound good? That’s what I thought. Here’s six ways to create long-term customer loyalty.

Engage consistently. Managing a base of loyal customers is almost like tending to a garden. You need to water it every day. In that sense, you need to engage your customers on a consistent basis. From providing social media updates to sending out email newsletters, consistency is key. Yotpo research tells us that 37% of customers don’t consider themselves brand loyal until they’ve made five purchases. If you want to hit five purchases, you need to keep engaging.

Meet their needs. If you’re not meeting the needs of your customers, you’re not developing loyalty. You need to understand your audience and their expectations. Otherwise, you stand to lose relevance. According to InMoment, nearly half of customers have ditched brands they were already loyal to do business with competitors that better meet their needs. This is what long-term loyalty is all about. It’s not just developing loyalty in the first place. It’s maintaining it.

Exceed their needs. Everyone likes a little surprise in their relationships, even with brands. There are plenty of brands that are content with simply meeting the needs of their customers. Sure, this inspires a sense of reliability. But it doesn’t do much to make customers think “Wow, these guys get me.” You want customers to admire your brand.

Plan ahead. You’re playing the long game here. You need to consider every point of the customer journey. New customers will have different expectations than long-time customers. What are you doing to attract new customers? What are you doing to keep old customers satisfied? How are these approaches unified?

Take a multichannel approach. Your customers are everywhere. And while your brand doesn’t have to be everywhere too, you shouldn’t be putting all your eggs into one basket. I recently published an article highlighting that your brand shouldn’t try to be on every social media network because it’s just not feasible or even necessary. However, I highlighted the importance of carefully selecting which networks to be on. I also detailed why your brand should leverage content across the channels that make sense.

What channels make sense for your brand? Are you effectively engaging across channels such as email, SMS, social media, and your website? Determine which channels are most frequented by your target audience and leverage your presence there.

Reward loyalty. If maintaining a base of loyal customers is like tending to a garden, your loyalty program is like an entire set of your most valuable gardening tools. Indeed, effective loyalty programs provide a diverse set of ways to keep customers engaged with brands. Not only do they keep customers spending and satisfied, they keep customers informed. Loyalty members are plugged into brand updates.

On top of that? Loyalty members are more likely to talk about brands. According to Bond, 70% of customers are more likely to recommend brands when they feature good loyalty programs.

Create Loyalty With CoGoBuzz

Creating loyalty is easy and affordable with CoGoBuzz, our state-of-the-art marketing service. Leveraging advanced WiFi, SMS, and Email solutions, our service incentivizes customers to stay engaged with your brand.

Because customers login through WiFi with their Facebook profile, email, or phone number, we’ll hook you up with fully-realized customer profiles, giving you all the valuable data you need to cater to them. On top of that, you’ll take advantage of a fully digital SMS-based loyalty program that simplifies engagement to a simple text message, allowing you to engage with your customers wherever they go.

Click here to learn more about CoGoBuzz!

What methods does your brand implement to foster long-term loyalty? Sound off in the comments!