How to create long-term loyalty?

The goal of a good loyalty program is keeping a customer loyal as long as you can. For this to happen you need a well thought out strategy regarding your loyalty plan. Making customers loyal (and keeping them that way) happens in a couple of stages: attracting customers, retaining customers, managing your loyalty program.


Attracting customers

First of all you need to have customers, without them you will not be able to set up a loyalty program. How you do this has already been explained in previous chapters. In short you can attract new customers through promotions, or advertising.


Retaining customers

Now that you have customers visiting your (web)shop it is time to keep them coming back. Give them a coupon after their first purchase, hand them some loyalty points and notify them when their next reward will be unlocked. Alternatively you can offer a customer who purchases services a free service after x visits.


Managing loyalty

Now, when you started work on retaining your customer it is time to manage your loyalty program. Managing this program and working on long-term loyalty requires extra (and sometimes informal) customer contact. There are numerous ways to work on long-term loyalty a few examples are:

  • Notify customers: Let the customer know what you do for them. Give them a phone call or send them an email letting them know that you are thinking about them. Sephora for example sends its customers a birthday email with a discount. The birthday email is however getting past its pinnacle. So many companies are now sending a "Happy birtday" email that it has started to irritate many consumers instead of giving them a warm feeling.
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