Providing great customer experience is one of the most powerful ways to create brand loyalty and influence sales growth. As a business owner, customer experience includes everything that you do leading up to and during a sale, and also goes to the after-sales service and beyond. In today’s competitive marketplaces, particularly during the busy holiday season there’s one technique that can be used to create a positive customer experience and to help customers feel valued.
If you want to leave the best impression while strengthening your brand, then you’ll need to know how to recognize your clients during the holiday season. There are countless ways to recognize your clients during the holiday season, and different methods will have different results depending on the type of company you operate, and the industry that you’re in. If you’ve been looking for customer recognition ideas for 2017, then this simple list will help you to get started.
1: Write a Handwritten Note
Many business owners think that they need to give something away to thank customers. This is simply not true, and small businesses can provide a simple handwritten note or holiday greeting card, and get great value from doing so. A personalized thankyou message will let a customer feel valued during the holiday season. They will see the effort that goes into a customized and handwritten note, and this will strengthen the perception of your brand.
Businesses that do this for their high value clients will find that they receive increased brand loyalty and strong sales results from those clients.
2: Teach Your Clients Something New
Celebrations during the holiday season can be turned into learning experiences, and you can host a local meet and greet, a workshop, or even an online seminar for your valued clients. Teach your clients new ways to use your products, or hold a free workshop where you cover a complete product or service range, exposing your clients to some of your lines that they might not have previously considered. Online businesses or direct sales companies can still provide workshops through live streamed seminars, or even whitepapers or by offering free coaching to their most valued clients.
3: Give an Exclusive Discount or Free Offer
Although it’s not always necessary to provide offers with free items or discounts, this client recognition technique can be highly effective, and it’s one of the easiest to implement for companies that have large client bases. Discount should be applied to high margin goods or services, or they should be bundled with loss leader products to help move slow inventory over the holiday season. However, profitability should not be the bottom line of a holiday discount or offer. This offer should provide real value to the consumer, so that the strongest brand impression can be formed.
4: Introduce a Customer Loyalty Plan
Loyalty plans can be introduced in the holiday season, providing a small benefit now, and creating the opportunity for long term business relationships. Loyalty plans are easier to implement than ever before, thanks to a number of growing smartphone based loyalty platforms. Even if you run your own loyalty program with stamp cards or a custom solution, you’ll be able to provide a desirable service to your clients. Entering the loyalty reward program could provide a free offer or a discount during the holiday season, with other benefits being offered throughout the program duration. Most programs are renewable every year, and offer a combination of discounts and special product offers. The mechanics are entirely up to you, and can be customized to meet the needs and the personality of your business.
5. Run a Competition on Social Media
Almost every modern business has a social media platform, and besides providing increased brand reach and engagement, social media is also the perfect platform for rewarding customers. Running a social media based holiday season competition can create positive buzz around your brand, while offering your clients a fun way to receive a reward over the holidays.
The hashtag photo competition is popular with businesses today. Clients enter by taking a photo of creative ways that they use your product. They share the image along with your promotion hashtag, and your team chooses the winners. This is a great way to virally market your brand, and works well on networks like twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. This type of competition can be used at any time of the year, so make sure that the reward is particularly special, or holiday themed.
With simple ideas and good value, you can reward your clients this holiday season, while building a positive perception of your brand and generating customer loyalty.