Tips for Retaining Customers

Smart businesses know that it costs less to retain existing customers than it does to acquire new ones. That’s why so many brands are focused on loyalty marketing — campaigns designed specifically to bring in repeat business and referrals. But it’s not enough to just send out a generic, “Hey, come back!” email to previous customers. In today’s market, you need to personalize your loyalty campaigns to fit your customers’ needs.

“Loyalty marketing needs to be personalized because, at its core, you are asking for a deeper relationship with your customer,” said Jason Greenspan, CEO at tech hygiene company WHOOSH!. “Would you ever think of giving a loved one a birthday cake saying, ‘Happy Birthday, Customer?’ Of course you wouldn’t.”

There’s plenty of proof that personalized marketing works, too: Recent research by Virtual Incentives found that 56 percent of consumers surveyed feel personalized incentives improve their consideration of a brand, and three-quarters said these incentives make them feel respected as a consumer. Another survey by Accenture Interactive revealed that 65 percent of customers are more likely to shop at a retailer that remembers their previous purchases.

However, there’s a fine line between personalization and privacy invasion, and brands need to be aware of how they’re coming off to consumers. Sixteen percent of those surveyed by Virtual Incentives described personalized offers as “creepy,” and a quarter said they felt these efforts are a violation of their privacy.