Small business owners have tremendous opportunities to grow their business at a higher rate if they endeavor to retain customers. And one vital way to retain customers is to build an effective and robust customer loyalty program that ensures paying customers always return. These loyalty programs also play a significant role in the business’s lifetime while ensuring great returns from their marketing budget.
When the marketing process hinges on assurance from existing customers, it becomes a win-win relationship for all parties in the market. What are the peculiarities of a small business that retain existing customers a better move than seeking new customers? First, a small business usually has a lesser budget than a more significant business in comparison.
Besides, since it costs far less to retain an existing customer than it takes to find a new one, more efforts should be channeled and keeping existing customers happy, satisfied, and coming. Therefore, loyalty and reward programs make up a powerful tool to quickly grow a small business and increase revenues. This article now considers the most efficient loyalty marketing ideas that a small business can implement to increase sales conversion and productivity.
Ideas of Loyalty Programs for a Small Business
- Free Special Offers
A simple way to encourage paying customers to return is by giving them special offers to boost their money value. For instance, a buy-one-get-one-free has always been highly productive as a marketing strategy. It can work for both new and existing customers as it can bait both categories of leads. The customer sees an increased value for two when paying for one while the business owner has the opportunity to sell two items to a client that would have bought one.
- Birthdays and Anniversary Surprises
Customers value their birthdays and anniversary if business owners could manage to keep such records. As a result, this strategy’s workability creates a viable customer database that contains necessary information of existing customers. The business owner then has an automatic reminder that ensures he never misses the customer’s special day. Social media platforms such as a business page that updates customers’ profiles can also serve this purpose. Alternatively, a business owner can build an email marketing list to keep vital information in exchange for unique gifts. A business owner can arrange a special offer to celebrants, small packaged gifts, or customized greeting cards in response to the special day.
- VIP Club Card
Depending on business nature, entrepreneurs can also build a member-only VIP club or team for most loyal customers. In this case, the business owner creates some exclusivity level to add more value to belonging to the VIP club. The special offers may come in discounts, value cards, promos, exclusive entry to special events, and other benefits. The VIP level application may not be high but must include a certain level of patronage.
On the other hand, the desire to enter this VIP level may also be why many customers strive to meet the requirements. The various VIP offers may include free testing of new products, product reviews, free produce or service samples, time-sensitive deals, and an expedited checkout process.
- Punch Cards
Punch cards in loyalty marketing rewards and programs is an excellent method for the food and beverage industry. This business sector can use punch cards to track and keep records of customers’ patronage. Consequently, after monitoring the patronage record, the business owner now creates a reward program for more consistent customers. Therefore, the more purchases that the customer makes, the more gifts such customers get. However, if this method work, the business owner must ensure that the incentive or reward is worth the effort.
- Partner Programs
Loyalty programs can also enhance the chances of loyal customers to get a stake in the business. This method is called a partner program, and it can create a form of partnership between the business and loyal customers. Alternatively, related businesses can connect with other businesses in the same locality and promote discounts and other special offers. Another strategy for partnership can come in joint public events such as an open sale event to get customers into the store more often. In other words, this strategy is more appropriate for product-based businesses.
- Free Upgrades
In light of the pursuit for VIP, another alternative may be the creation of multilevel customer status. For instance, as a customer spends up to a certain amount, they enter a specified level. At that level, there be benefits and special offers. Therefore, the loyalty program is the customers’ attempt to upgrade to the next level.
At the same time, each customer who intends to upgrade is motivated to spend more and earn more benefits. Simultaneously, the business makes more sales without necessarily spending more on traditional marketing and advertisements. In other cases, especially for ICT firms, business owners may sell helpful software and other applications to improve the user’s experience.
- Customer Survey for Incentives
As another strategy that can enhance the business chances to win customers’ hearts, a business owner should create a customer survey. In the customer survey, the business can create a database of vital information through standard data collection and processing methods. To motivate paying customers to do more, you may need to add some incentives.
As a result, more paying customers be willing to give you helpful information to help your business. By the way, business owners can combine this method with other methods, making it easy to combine two or more strategies to achieve great results. Apart from the necessary information on customers’ biodata, business owners can also learn a great deal about their behavior for retargeting.
Business owners can combine several loyalty program ideas to achieve a higher level of productivity. By implementing these strategies, entrepreneurs who own small businesses can also promote their business and achieve better results with a lesser marketing budget. So, if you own a small business, you can implement the ideas above to create enormous returns while you learn to retain your loyal customers.