Many businesses will see a large decline in sales after the busy holiday season. This makes it more important than ever to have a solid retention strategy that will keep hard-won customers shopping with your store throughout the new year. One of the best (and easiest) ways to do this is simply by thanking them!
Giving Thanks Boosts Brand Loyalty and Willingness to Buy
These days, customer acquisition costs are way too high to be ignoring your customers. The trick is making your appreciation genuine and personalized. Your customers know the difference between a generic “thank you” email and an act of appreciation coming from the heart. Showing true appreciation for your customers provides them with a better experience and 86% of American customers have said they are willing to pay more for a better customer experience.
This clearly illustrates how much your customers value an emotional connection with your brand, so give it to them! Toss your tired old email templates and start thinking of ways you can really show your customers that you care.
How You Can Start Thanking Your Customers:
To help get you started, we have 3 amazing tips to help you start showing appreciation and increasing customer loyalty.
1. Recognize Them with a Personalized Gift
Recognizing your customers on a personal level is important. It’s this recognition that will help establish trust between them and your brand.
Personalized gifts are the perfect way to strengthen the relationship between your customers and your brand. This could be a physical product with their name engraved on it for your best customers or a free eBook with additional information.
Nextiva Cares creates videos like these to thank their customers on an individual level. There’s nothing more personal and memorable than receiving a video created just for you!
Even something as simple as a handwritten note with a customer’s order can be enough to make their order stand out from the tons of other purchases they are making daily. The key here is to find something scalable but still personalized, so get creative!
2. Send a Personalized Email That Offers Extra Value
Even though email has become a commodity, doesn’t mean you need to treat it that way. Showing true appreciation can’t be done by sending one generic email blast to your entire customer base, but there are other ways email can be used in an authentic way. Consider sending emails that recommend products they might enjoy, discounts on their next purchase, or just a good old-fashioned thank you note. This is a great way to invite people back to your store, and makes sure they don’t forget about you immediately after Christmas.
The value you provide in the email can be monetary or informational. Monetary value could be anything from coupon codes or free shipping, to access to exclusive deals on products they’d enjoy. Informational value, on the other hand, could be tailored blog posts or suggested content. If you’ve subscribed to Spotify Premium, you know that periodically you will receive a music playlist that somehow contains all your soon-to-be favorite songs. Although this is a more complex example since Spotify uses machine learning to determine your music taste, it’s still a great case of a large company sending scalable emails that still feel personal.
Just like personalized gifts, the key is sending your customers something they value. Having a loyalty program becomes very convenient in this scenario because they offer extremely personalized emails that are jam packed with value while still being very scalable. Redemption campaign and points balance emails are two great examples of this.
No matter what value looks like to your brand, you need to determine what your customers want from your brand and include it in your next post-purchase email campaign.
3. Implement a Rewards Program to Acknowledge Customer Referrals
After all that holiday shopping, customers who had a good experience with your business may want to tell their friends about it – and they should be rewarded for it! A rewarding referral program is one of the best methods you can use to not only thank your customers for their word of mouth but also to directly reduce your customer acquisition cost.
This is because word of mouth marketing is much more trustworthy than advertisements, which makes it an effective tool to bring in new customers. With one of the best referral programs in the world, Uber does a great job of this by offering $5 to refer a friend and a free ride up to $10 for the new customer.
Remember, you want to be providing an incentive each time one of your customers refers someone to your brand to make sure they keep doing it. Giving back to your customers goes a long way, especially with happy customers from the holidays. Get them sharing your store with their friends by incentivizing referrals and you will be sure to retain more of your December crowd.
Thanking Your Holiday Shoppers Will Ensure They Return
We all know how important it is to have loyal customers, and a great way to create them is by giving them the best customer experience possible. Whether you’re sending them a free gift, personalized email, or extra loyalty points for referring their friends, make sure you’re appreciating your new (and old!) customers – even when the holidays are over.
Smile.io powers rewards programs for 15,000 merchants across the globe. Use Smile.io to reward your customers for completing valuable actions.