Kelly Zugay, Co-Founder of With Grace and Gold®
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Brand loyalty refers to “the tendency of some consumers to continue buying the same brand of goods rather than competing brands.” If you’re a small business owner who offers one big experience your clients primarily journey through just once — like a brand and web designer, a wedding photographer, or a wedding planner — you may be wondering why brand loyalty matters for your business.
Over our past 8 years in business, though, we’ve been honored to serve returning clients who have re-hired With Grace and Gold for our Brand and Web Design Experience and returning customers who have gone on to purchase new Showit website templates from With Grace and Gold.
As younger business owners, we hadn’t realized we’d ever have an opportunity to serve repeat clients and customers; after all, we were always really focused on the clients we were actively serving.
Now, years later, we see how brand loyalty matters not only for product-based businesses, but also for luxury service based businesses. Today, we’re going to share 5 ways to build and foster brand loyalty — how to keep customers and clients coming back to your business, recommending your business to friends, family, and fellow professionals, and more.
5 Ways to Build and Foster Brand Loyalty
Brand loyalty matters for businesses of all kinds and all sizes. With brand loyal clients and customers, you can create a business designed for success not only in the short-term, but also in the long-term. Whether your business is product-based or service-based, there is meaning and value in building and fostering brand loyalty. Consider these numbers from Hubspot:
- 93% of customers are likely to make repeat purchases from companies who offer excellent customer service.
- A 5% increase in customer retention correlates with at least a 25% increase in profit.
- 69% of customers would spend more on a company with better customer service.
- Happy customers will share their positive experiences and refer about 11 people, while unhappy customers will share their negative experience with 15 people.
Today, we’re going to share 5 ways to build and foster brand loyalty for your small business!
- Prioritize kindhearted, professional customer service and communication. When I receive any email at With Grace and Gold, I think about how the sender could have chosen any number of designers to email. With this in mind, a kindhearted greeting and a message of thanks always play a role in my email communication. Having received many brief, not-so-friendly emails myself, I know how much of a difference kind and open communication can create. When you prioritize kindhearted communication, you can create a meaningful experience for your prospective clients and set the tone for their entire client experience ahead. First impressions matter so, so much — so consider the ways your communication can make a difference with regards to how your business is perceived.
- Set expectations. Just like in everyday life, people who have paid money and hired a business love to know what to expect. What’s going on? What’s expected of me? What can I expect of you? Setting expectations and communicating those expectations clearly and professionally helps clients to build confidence in your business. Rather than sensing disorganization or a lack of structure, clients are welcomed to an organized and smooth process they can trust in and follow.
- Create value for your audience. Over the years, social media marketing has changed and evolved so much. Nowadays, we notice how essential it is to create value for your audience — not only posting aesthetically beautiful photos or graphics, but also providing education, entertainment, or value of some kind. When you create value for your audience, you give them a reason to continue following along — to remain engaged with your business as a whole. Whether you create value through your newsletter freebies, your blog posts, or your social media marketing, when service and helpfulness is at the heart of your business, you can make a real difference for your audience and for their loyalty to your business.
- Follow up with your customers and your clients to better ensure their success. Whether your customers are part of a customer support newsletter sequence, your clients are part of a supportive Facebook community, or you follow up more directly with your past customers and clients — providing communication following their purchase can better equip your customers or clients for success. This thoughtful gesture can make all the difference in how your customers and clients perceive your business — and in how likely they are to return to or recommend your business in the future.
- Be consistent. Consistency helps to build trust in your business. When your message is clear, consistent, and repeated, customers and clients will become familiar with and more comfortable with the quality, values, and approach they can expect from your business. From the consistency of your brand and web design, newsletter marketing, and social media marketing — to the consistency of your client experience, your process, and your workflows, consistency is key. For solopreneurs and business partners who manage all key areas of their businesses, standardizing and even automating key areas of your business, can help you to create consistency. Take the time, just once, to comb through your website, newsletter, social media, processes, and workflows. When you do, you’ll be so relieved each area of your business is polished and ready to be shared with customers and clients.
We are so hopeful today’s episode equips and empowers you to design your business for brand loyalty.
About Brand It, Build It Podcast, Hosted by Kelly Zugay
Hosted by Kelly Zugay, co-founder of With Grace and Gold, The Brand It, Build It Podcast is a leading small business marketing podcast for small business owners, creatives, and founders. Weekly, brief, actionable episodes will equip you to build a successful, sustainable small business.