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It takes time, effort to build customer loyalty

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We all know and appreciate the value of repeat business. Happy customers will come back and, chances are, they will become your best ambassadors. Third-party endorsements are the kind of advertising that money can never buy.

The key is, of course, getting them there in the first place. Our goods and services don’t often sell themselves. Few businesses have a lock on their market. It takes a little extra effort to build and maintain customer loyalty.

Consistency is the first hurdle

Customers expect the same experience every time they interact with your business. That means it’s on you as the owner or manager to ensure that your employees are properly trained, know how to solve problems and take their jobs seriously. Customers count on you to deliver a convenient and affordable experience every time. Make sure they get it.

Engage, engage, engage

If you have brick-and-mortar locations, welcome people when they walk in. Nothing says “I don’t care” quicker than ignoring a customer. Be sincere, smile and ask how you can help. Phone calls and e-mails can be a little tougher since the person on the other end can’t see your face. In those cases, be extra careful about your tone. Customers can read many unintentional things into your e-mails, so consider getting a second opinion from an unbiased source before you hit “send.”

Humanize your marketing

Gather customer testimonials to use on your website and social media sites. Let them see how things happen “behind the curtain” through videos, blogs and e-newsletters. Feature your employees on all your marketing platforms. We’re human and naturally attracted to other people.

Be careful with introductory offers

Sometimes it takes a little enticing to bring first-timers in the door. That often comes in the form of special offers or reduced costs. Gyms and cable/satellite TV providers are known for offering special rates to new customers. Before you go too far, remember that your current customers pay attention to these offers, too, and they might wonder why they never received such a sweet deal.

Take feedback seriously

If you’re going to offer customers the ability to comment on your business or services, make sure you act on the most relevant opinions. When you see trends, address the issues, make changes and let people know. Also build on your strong points. When customers let you know they appreciate something or someone at your business, double down and enhance that strength.

Loyalty is something that’s built over time. It takes initiative to generate repeat customers, but the entrepreneur who is up to the task stands to benefit from those relationships. Customer loyalty is the best way to grow a business in a highly competitive environment.

West Press’ talented staff is here to help you each step of the way — from graphic design to printing to mailing services to large format to website development. Contact West Press or your Account Executive at 520-624-4939 today.