- 20% of your customers drive 80% of your business, so make sure you are focusing your efforts on keeping them engaged with your business and thinking of you even when they are not on-site. The best way to do this is through a loyalty program that engages these customers via text message marketing. The loyalty rewards entice them join your program and the regular engagement with offers and information of value keep them coming back.
- Highly-engaged customers become your EVANGELISTS. They become experts on your brand and if you make it easy for them, they will actively share offers you text out with their friends, expanding your database even further.
- Highly-engaged customers are LOYAL and will stick with you for the long haul. They are also the most responsive, since they have to give you permission to send text offers, when one comes in, they will read it. Quickly. 98% of all text messages are read within 5 minutes. There is no more effective form of communication available today.
- Be generous with your rewards program. Don’t make customers leap over tall buildings for a meager discount. They will tire quickly of this and opt out. When calculating what you can afford to give back to customers, calculate what their likely total spend might be over 5-6 visits and then rebate them 10% back once they reach that milestone. If it takes your customer more than a few months to reach the 6th visit, then lower the bar. It’s better to reward more often than to make a customer wait so long that they have forgotten why they joined your program in the first place.
- Make sure all offers you text out are of value to your customer. There can be an occasional informational text, but make sure you pepper those with regular promotional discounts, early access or other special things not available to the general public. And make sure you offer an incentive to join your program. Those businesses which offer a sign-up incentive see their databases grow 500% faster than those that do not offer anything.
Has your business added a loyalty program? If so, you are not alone. All types of businesses have added what is arguably the most cost effective form of marketing available for the smaller business. The problem now is, how do you differentiate yourself from your competition if everyone has a loyalty program?
Today, loyalty programs must be reimagined. Stop thinking that the purpose of your loyalty program is to make your customers loyal to you and start thinking of it the other way. A loyalty program is really all about making sure your customers know that your business is loyal to THEM. It’s a mindset change, but if you think about your loyalty program through this prism, you will see greater success.
All Loyalty Programs Are Not Created Equal
Many POS systems offer an add-on loyalty program. These programs are inexpensive and rely on the business owner to manage the loyalty program. These are typically transactionally-based, meaning they reward a customer once they are in the store and make a purchase that reaches that business’ spending milestone. Look for programs that engage customers when they are NOT in the store. THIS is how you keep your brand top-of-mind. Look for programs that allow redemptions right from their phone or through a kiosk. Look for a program that offers custom branded mobile coupons and offers methods for data collection because it is in the data that you find the gold.
According to retailtouchpoints.com, a majority of transactionally-based loyalty programs fail within the first two years.
Loyalty and the Power of Mobile
When you create a loyalty program that is based on the mobile platform, you will have the ability to not only reward those customers for their purchases, but because you have built a database of their mobile numbers and have obtained the required permission, you can now further engage with them, when they are NOT in your store, offering them reasons to come back in. The key to a successful loyalty program is to reward engagement, not just purchases.
Make Gratitude Your Attitude
When you shift the way you think about your loyalty program and make it all about thanking your customers for their loyalty, you will start to treat those who have joined your mobile database differently than the rest of your customers. By treating this group as a special group, they will reward YOU in spades. When customers realize that they will be offered special discounts or special access not available to anyone else, they will line up to join your program. And once you have their number in your database, you can begin to nurture that relationship by making sure they realize how much you value their business.
57% Are Willing To Share Data With You To Get Personalized Offers and Discounts
Loyalty + Relevance will ensure success. Gather data and use it to personalize your offers. Text-based communication is naturally conversational, so get your customer’s first names so you can personalize your messages. Ask them what type of info they’d like to be kept in the loop on and then send them just what they have asked for. Do this and you will see minimal opt-outs.
Mobile High 5 works with small and medium sized businesses and regional chains to help them leverage a powerful loyalty + SMS text marketing to keep customers engaged and to keep brands top-of-mind. It’s not just our technology that makes us different; it’s the expertise behind the curtain and our ridiculously fast customer service.
Today, Competition is EVERYWHERE: Online, Down the Street and Even In The Adjacent State
The big brands have been doing this for at least a decade. The smaller business is very late to the party, but I have proof that it’s never too late to belly up to the bar.
4 Ways to Compete Effectively Today
- Take back control of your database. If you are using facebook as you sole website, you have ceded control of literally everything to a 3rd party closed ecosystem. If you are counting on all your followers to see every post you make you are sadly mistaken.
- Understand where your customer’s attention is today. It’s on their phone. More than 95% of the US population now owns a smart phone. People glance at their phone literally ALL DAY LONG. This is where you should be communicating with them.
- Forget about developing an app, unless you are a HUGE brand like Starbucks, or Facebook or Twitter – something that people are likely to interact with daily. If you are a small business, save your money. Statistics show that 49% of people who initially download an app (usually to get that juicy join offer) will abandon using it within 30 days.
- Remember back around 1996 when email was a really new tool for marketing? Everyone jumped on building a database so they could send out communication to their customers to keep them connected and engaged. Well, email readership is tanking because there is so much spam that has infiltrated the system. When you build a database of your customer’s MOBILE numbers, you will have an invaluable way of reaching them instantly on the device they prefer and will see a nearly 100% read rate within about 5 minutes.
Because Mobile Marketing is Highly Regulated, There Is No Spam
Customers are required to give you explicit permission to opt into your program and if regulations are followed correctly, instructions on how to opt out should they change their mind should come with every communication,
Mobile Marketing Is Where Email Marketing Was in 1997.
Only 38% of businesses are leveraging this powerful tool, yet nearly 83% of consumers wish their favorite stores and brands communicated with them via text. Send a text and watch your traffic spike.
Opportunity Knocks. Will You Answer?
Those businesses that have jumped onto the mobile marketing highway have seen huge benefits. Our typical ROI ranges between 300-600% varying by type of business. If your business relies on repeat business, you should be moving in the direction of a mobile marketing program.
Mobile High 5 provides small businesses major league tools at minor league prices
Why This Should Be Your #1 Goal in 2019
- Control When Your Messages Are Read. Unlike third-party social platforms a low percentage of business posts are seen (unless you promote with paid ads.). Why put social platforms in complete control of reaching your customer?
- Texts Are The Most Effective Form of Communication Today. Email read rates are dipping at around 10-20%. Social media posts – only a fraction of your followers will see those messages and in both email and social media, you have to WAIT for your customers to get around to checking these channels. Texts see read rates of 98% within 5 minutes. Unbeatable!
- Capture data on what your customers spends, when they spend it, who they are, even where they are, so you can customize messages to target them in a way that drives them back in the door. With text marketing, you can send different messages to different parts of your database, increasing your ROI!
Mobile marketing is permission-based, so any customer who has joined your mobile club has literally given you permission to send advertising to their personal phone. How many unread text messages do you have? Same with your customers. This is why building your mobile database should be your TOP goal for 2019.
Make sure each message you send has value and they will stay in your club forever. Loyalty goes both ways.
Not If You Want To Run Your Program In A Legally Compliant Manner.
Text message marketing falls under the same regulatory body as Robo calls. Customers have to give advance and explicit permission in order for you to send text messages to them. Additionally, each message must contain information on how to opt out of a campaign after they have opted in.
In short, the customer is in charge here, so it is important that your text marketing campaigns offer something of value with each communication. Something of value doesn’t mean a discount with each message…it means information that is of value to your customers. If you are a restaurant, it could be information about your catering menu, or the fact that you have a really cool band playing Saturday night. If you are a retail store, it could be information about an upcoming trunk show, or a fundraiser where a portion of your sales goes to a nonprofit. If you are a spa, it could be last minute openings you have that you’re willing to discount to fill. If you are a car wash, it could be a rainy day offer on detailing – who thinks of a car wash when it’s raining? Remind them you are still open and welcome them.
When You Begin Your Campaign, Focus ALL Your Attention On Getting People To Opt In: Create a Tribe
Everyone wants to be a part of something special. Create your own tribe.
American Express coined the term “Membership Has Its Privileges” ages ago and it stands as one of the iconic marketing campaigns even to this day. It convinced millions to think that by carrying the American Express card they were somehow elevated over those who simply carried a Mastercard of VISA.
In the same way, create your own tribe, your own VIP club and regularly engage with this group. Make them feel special to you, because they are. They represent your best customers. Reward them with special information and offers and they’ll reward you by spending more money and visiting you more often.
Curious How Text Message Marketing Competes With Social Media Marketing? Run an A/B Split Campaign
To small businesses, this may be a new term for them. The A-B split is a method of testing the effectiveness of marketing methods or media. So, run a campaign specifically to your mobile database of customers on one day. Make a compelling offer that is available JUST for them and JUST for that day.
Follow that up with an offer the NEXT day and post that ONLY on social media. Again, make sure your offer is good for JUST that one day.
Now Compare The Results
• The difference between those companies which grow and those which don’t is whether they pay attention to their existing customers. The more customers you keep coming in the door, the more likely you will achieve your business goals.
• It costs 6-7 times what it costs to keep a customer than it does to find that new customer. So why are companies focusing so much on generating new customers?
• The biggest hurdle for most is where to begin. In this blog post, I will share 5 easy strategies that you can use to keep your existing customers happy and over the long term, this will increase your profits for much less investment.
The Success Rate of Selling To An Existing Customer is 60-70% vs only 5-20% For A New Customer.
Why do customers leave?
5% Gets a Friend to Provide Service
9% Are Persuaded to Go To A Competitor
14% Are Dissastisfied
68% Believe You Don’t Care About Them
68% Need Constant Convincing That You Care
A business the “gets this” and invests in customer retention does so because it is the biggest revenue driver they have, according to KPMG.
5 Reasons You Need To Care About This
- You will see more revenue. These customers already have bought from you, so unless you really screwed up, they will buy again. They already trust you and you already know something about them so you will find it easier to develop offers that compel them to action.
- Less Marketing Is Necessary. You’ll spend less time because you won’t have to ALSO find them and convince them to buy, so you’ll spend less on marketing. A new customer costs 16 times more to maintain than an existing one. If you have a restaurant, studies show it takes 4 visits by a customer before they become a regular.
- Get Feedback So you Can Improve Their Experience. All you have to do is ask for that feedback and your existing customers will likely provide it. They will feel honored to have been asked and you’ll gain valuable insight that you can use to improve your offering.
- Higher Profits. Selling new customers often requires price discounting. Selling to your existing customers is based on value. They will be more receptive got up-selling and cross selling because THEY ALREADY TRUST YOU. According to Gartner Group, 80% of your revenue comes from just 20% of your customers, so reward them and show them you care!
- Lower Costs. A small 5% increase in customer retention can increase a company’s profitability by 25-95% according to The Harvard Business School.
Fastest Way To Retain Customers Is Through Loyalty Programs
The easiest way to build a database today and to know you’ll be reaching customers directly is to go MOBILE. Customers only have one phone yet have multiple emails. Relying on email marketing or just social media is based on a strategy of HOPE.
With Mobile marketing, you are reaching your customers right where their attention already is, on their personal phone. A whopping 98% of your messages are read within 5 minutes. Include an incentive and those customers come back in more often. Add a loyalty program that rewards customers for coming back and it acts as a multiplier.
Mobile marketing is permission based, so only those who have given their number willingly will join your program. You will find those are your best customers. They are the folks who want to engage with your business. Regularly. And isn’t that the best customer to have?
Interested in learning more about how a loyalty program might work for your business? Contact me for a no obligation 1-to-1 tutorial.