Every company aims to place its product or service on the market and make a profit by selling to as many customers as possible. Customer relationship management (CRM) is a strategy focused on customers and building a long-term relationship with them by providing them with added value. The benefits that implementing CRM brings are numerous: retention customers, increase the number of transactions, reduce costs, increase profitability, provide additional service, providing feedback, developing sales and service skills, and motivating and rewarding customers and employees.
CRM is the management of relationships in a way that the partnership with customers develops, thrives, and stays favorable all the time. For most business organizations that want to maintain their business in a modern environment, consumer loyalty is what they strive for. Greater consumer loyalty also brings greater profitability, which implies the ability to remain a stable or profitable consumer. Loyal consumers will spend more and more often in certain stores, that is come back for more products.
The concept of a loyalty program can be explained as a formalized connection of customers who meet the conditions set by the retailer. Customers make some effort to become members, and in return receive benefits that are only available to program members. A study of loyalty programs revealed five elements present in most programs: database, accession process, added value for customers, rewards, and recognition from customers.
Customer retention is one of the key elements to achieving loyalty. Many companies realized that in the long run, and economically, it was much more profitable to keep existing customers than spend resources such as time and money on identifying and developing new customers. Again, value is often more important to customers than price and they could therefore be less price-sensitive when they buy products and/or services that they know and trust. Of course, in order to achieve loyalty, a company must reorient its marketing strategy and target not only new but also existing customers.
The main purpose of creating a loyalty program is to inform customers about the quality of products/services and in order to gain their confidence that existing needs will be met in accordance with the expectations of loyal customers. Product/service quality information can be distributed by applying mass communication media. A personalized promotional message, which aims to build trust with a specific customer in a way that is in line with his individual expectations, cannot be distributed through mass communication media.
As early as the 1980s, there were major advances in improving loyalty programs. Given that it was impossible to establish a close relationship with large groups, there was a need to identify customers. To improve direct marketing, companies are introducing databases to gain insight into information about its customers. Various reward systems are also being introduced to encourage its customers to use the program.
Today, there are many types of loyalty programs offered to consumers depending on the type of business the company does.
The most basic model of the loyalty program is available to everyone and rewards its loyal customers. It is also possible to set a minimum amount that the consumer must spend to be entitled to a further discount or reward. There are also those loyalty programs that collect user data into a database, and using it and analyzing it, improve the turnover of goods.
What we can often encounter is that some companies charge for membership in the loyalty program. As pointless as this may sound, because, instead of rewarding the customer with extra money, this program has its benefits with every subsequent purchase. For example, you pay a membership fee of $ 50, but with each subsequent purchase you buy at prices formed specifically for program users, so instead of $ 300 for a mattress, you will pay only $ 120. Best of all, the buyer will be informed about each subsequent action, which is in favor of him and the company.
Thus, we can say that the goal of the loyalty program is to maintain sales levels, network, and profits, increase the loyalty of existing customers, as well as encourage future purchases from existing customers. Precisely because both parties benefit from this program, loyalty programs are increasingly represented in sales. If you want to learn more about it go here.
Gaining customer loyalty is always an easy task and it is up to the company to devise the strategy that seems most appropriate. Some companies continuously invest in lowering the prices of products offered on store shelves, while others care more about the company’s image and thus strive to position themselves more strongly in the market. But one thing is for sure – the customer always remembers when he is treated nicely, that is, when he is provided with the appropriate service.
Customers should always be given a reason to come back so some new motivation is always needed. So, we could say that the first step that a company should take is to create loyal employees because they are a mirror of the company in which they work. This is easiest to achieve with loyalty programs, by giving customers discounts, rewards, cards for collecting additional points that they can use for a discount when buying, etc. In this way, the company can monitor the consumption of its customers and see which products they are buying and how often.
Companies that choose to introduce a loyalty program into their business must ensure the quality of the background implied by the marketing information system. The company must own quality and accurate information about its consumers. Loyalty programs are a must create with a clear business goal and purpose so as not to harm the business of the company.
A satisfied customer can later grow into a loyal customer, who guarantees constant traffic, maintaining market share, and provides an opportunity to expand the market. Dissatisfied customers act adversely spreading the negative experience to potential customers. Customers act emotionally stronger when they are dissatisfied, they turn their disappointment into loud anger, resentment, and that is why necessarily delight the bidder. Then their positive effects are stronger. That is why the bidder must know what customers expect from him and how his product or service expects it can accomplish.