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Tag Archives: brand loyalty

  • Loyalty Program Ideas

    Profitability aside, the underlying goal of any retail business should be to establish a loyal customer base. To show your thanks, those who choose your store above others on a regular basis should be rewarded in the form of some exclusive offering, monetary or otherwise. Here are some suggestions to keep your loyal following happy and, above all, engaged.

    Image from Getty Images

    Buy one, get one

    Don’t discount the traditional route of buying a specific number of products and getting one free. Take it a step further by upgrading the cumbersome loyalty business cards by having customers enter their email addresses at the point-of-sale to, in turn, gather that oh-so-valuable contact information, while also eliminating the need to carry around a stack of punch cards.

     

    Points system

    Less cut and dry, enlist a points system for customers to earn certain rewards based on different levels of engagement, such as taking a survey or referring a friend. What’s more, reward user-generated content, such as writing an online review or sharing your posts on their social media pages, which costs your company nothing but provides priceless promotion.

     

    Get social

    Chances are, your social media followers and email subscribers are your loyal customers. Put those channels to use by starting a campaign — perhaps using a unique hashtag, offering a discount code, or even posing industry-specific trivia—to engage followers to promote your brand and its products on their own pages.

     

    Members-only events

    Social media followers and email newsletter subscribers can gain exclusive access to events held at your store (think after-hours calligraphy lessons, flower arranging, and yoga practices) simply by liking your business, automatically inviting customers back to your store and hopefully bringing a friend or two.

     

    VIP club

    Depending on the nature of your business, having customers pay a service fee upfront to gain exclusive access and discounts or priority purchasing could be a win-win, guaranteeing an investment on both ends with a fail-safe return visit. Better yet, let customers choose their level of engagement and empower them to personalize their experience with anything from offering an expedited checkout process to free product previews.

     

    Question for you

    How do you keep your customers engaged? Describe the loyalty program you use in your store in the comments below for a chance to win Grommet Swag!

  • How Do You Become A Brand, Not Just A Retail Store?

    These days, people don’t just buy products; they buy brands. But don’t mistake brand identity for brand loyalty. Brand loyalty has become much more than just a tag or logo; it’s a lifestyle.

     

    So how do you take your retail store to the next level? By getting your customers involved every step of the way, of course. Here’s how:

    Tell your story

    If you started a camping store because you once hiked the Appalachian Trail solo, then make that your brand’s narrative. You’ll create the impression that you’re much more committed and devoted than your competition, while also instilling trust in the brands you carry (as long as your employees are experts on these products, too).

     

    Focus on in-store experience

    Customers should want to come to your store, not dread it. In other words, it should be a destination worthy of emulating. A fashion boutique that mimics a luxurious walk-in closet or a home goods store that oozes abode envy only makes your customers want to re-create that experience at home (using all your products, of course).

     

    Create curb appeal

    Don’t underestimate the power of seasonal window displays with an unavoidable sandwich board for passersby. And even if it’s not an actual sidewalk sale, moving merchandise outside will make pedestrians slow down at the very least. What’s more, a bike shop with a tire pump out front and a pet store with water dishes for dogs will all but force potential customers to stop and stay a while.

     

    Host events

    Bringing potential and existing customers into your store on a regular basis can be as easy as hosting a running or yoga group at your athleisure store every week or as extensive as a monthly calligraphy course at your stationery store. Even go a step further and create your own or piggyback on an annual holiday (National Grilled Cheese Day, anyone?). Engaging your customers with your products while offering expertise and advice will only make them want to come back to learn (and buy) more.

     

    Give back

    A win-win for customers to learn more about your background and mission is to partner with a local charity. Host an annual food or clothing drive, then offer a discount to customers who bring items to donate. Not only will it get traffic in the door, but it will also start a conversation worth engaging in.

     

    Social media presence

    While there is something to be said about connecting with your customers offline, crafting a social media presence online can’t go unnoticed. Start a blog that doesn’t pitch your products but rather tells a story, then use your social media accounts to make followers feel like they are getting insight into new products and events. Also be sure to respond to comments and questions, good and bad alike.

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