3 mantras for building customer loyalty in the digital era

In order to build and strengthen customer loyalty, brands must stay relevant and develop an emotional connect in order to retain their customers, otherwise now they are now just a click away from being fade away, writes Rakesh Jaitly, Senior Sales Director - Oracle Applications

According to Harvard Business Review, emotionally connected customers are more than twice as valuable as a highly satisfied customer considering the fact that they buy more, are less price sensitive and are more likely to recommend the brand. 

Build trust 

Interaction with customers every time doesn’t mean it has to end with a sale.  There are different ways to incentivise behaviour, either through gamifying experience or providing advice on what to purchase. An interaction for earning from a sale and accumulating loyalty points should not be the focus, rather it should look upon the full experience. Try to be by the side of the customer whenever they require you. 

Successful delivery of the product after sale is critical in building trust with a customer. Inventory, shipping, and forecasting should not be overlooked. Right product should be delivering at the right place at right time and the brand should always be active to take up questions on all channels, including social media. 

Anticipate customer needs 

It’s not a secret anymore that personalised experiences are now a common thing among retail brands. Consumers want to feel special and like brands know them personally. They want to be remembered and have a tendency to spend more when they receive hyper personalised experiences. 

To achieve this, brands try to leverage data for both in-person, online and mobile interactions to build a holistic view of the buyer-one that will help businesses identify preferences and anticipate customer needs. 

But, there is a thin line between successfully anticipate a customer’s needs and crossing the line into a disjointed experience and distrust. The line could be different for every customer and can require keen attention towards it. 

Create frictionless experiences 

Now-a-days, customers expect brands to be aware of their specific needs, irrespective of their favoured channel of interaction. They prefer moving in and out of the customer lifecycle fluidly, while upholding the context of their previous interactions. But often we have seen businesses being focused on separate experiences for in store, online and mobile. This leads to a disjoint in customer experience. 

Brands should think of innovative ways for customers to earn and redeem loyalty points across channels multiple channels, be it on social media or visiting a store or trying up a sample product. Points to avail should be allowed across channels and it should be promoted as customers would be able to choose the method that fits them the best.


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