Have a robust brand strategy.
The way you present your brand is the number one factor influencing how connected consumers feel to it. You want to develop a story around your brand that is authentic and relatable.
Your brand story should be in everything your business puts out, like your logo, mission and value statements, visuals, and copy.
As you build your brand identity and strategy, ask yourself these questions:
- What is your brand’s personality?
- What should consumers associate with your brand?
- What story does your brand want to tell?
- What emotions does your brand name and/or tagline evoke?
Once you answer these questions, you’ll then want to make sure it aligns with your user persona (i.e. the semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer). Is this what they’re looking for? If not, go back to the drawing board until they line up. During this process, you can organise surveys, focus groups, and interviews to better understand your audience.
Figure out what your audience cares about
Think about the people you’re most loyal to. How did you get to that point? I’d imagine that part of this loyalty is rooted in shared values.
Consumers are loyal to brands they identify with. So, if you’re not sure how to bridge the gap between your brand and your audience, start by identifying the values of your user persona. This should provide a good starting point to better understand your audience’s motivations, behaviors, and concerns.
You can then use that information to craft messaging that resonates with them. This should be reflected not only on your website but all branded content – especially social media.
For example, I’ve become loyal to Fanm Djanm and Tabitha Brown (who is both an influencer and a brand) because they represent values that I resonate with. And what’s most important is that they reflect those values in their creative assets, messaging, and products.
Build a community and engage with it
Brand loyalty happens when you forge a connection with your audience.
The best way to do that is by building a community around your brand to further cultivate relationships.
There are a few ways to do this:
- Respond to your audience’s messages on social media and encourage engagement on your posts.
- Launch a newsletter that allows you to reach out to your audience on a consistent basis. What’s more personal than someone’s inbox?
- Create a private group for your community and offer exclusive content.
Nowadays, consumers have no problem telling brands exactly what they think.
At this very moment, Twitter users all over the world are tagging brands in their tweets, criticizing them, and airing out their grievances.
While not all criticism is worth engaging in, you’ll definitely find some worth investigating internally. Be proactive in addressing issues that affect your brand’s image.
This is why social monitoring is key to understanding how consumers view your brand. From there, you can adjust your messaging and marketing strategy to better align with what they want.
Personalise your marketing efforts
Whenever I get “Happy Birthday” emails from brands, I instantly feel more connected to them. And yeah, the discount in the email doesn’t hurt either, but that’s not what creates that feel-good moment.
It’s the idea that I matter to the brand, even if it’s an automated message with my name filling in the blank.
This strategy is also effective, as a 2020 Retail Customer Loyalty study found that almost 80% of senior marketers who surpassed their revenue goals had personalised their marketing strategies.
Personalised marketing efforts help your messages resonate better with your audience. It builds trust and can be an essential step in building loyalty.
Implement referral programs
If you have loyal customers, why not incentivize them to spread awareness about your brand?
Reward programs allow customers to earn special discounts on products or services when they refer the brand to other people.
While some brand loyalists may already be promoting your brand, this serves as an additional reminder that can increase their loyalty even more.