It’s critical that brands measure how valuable their loyal customers are, but this can be a challenge.
Measuring purchase data is easy to do: AOV, frequency, and yearly transactions.
In that sense, brands can measure the success of loyalty programs and other engagement tactics. But what is much harder to measure is what happens between transactions.
What happens in between purchases is also a huge barometer of customer loyalty.
To learn how loyal customers are engaging, and not engaging, we decided to ask 2,500 U.S. consumers as part of our 2022 Customer Loyalty Data Study and some of the results might surprise you.
Here are the six common ways loyal customers engage with their favorite brands.
1. Sixty-five percent of consumers say they try a new product or service from their favorite brands monthly.
This stat is a good one for brands because a large amount of your customers have tried a new product or service from you in the past year. This shows a significant amount of loyalty to your brand.
To increase this figure, personalize more of your communications with your customers.
For example, a common and often successful method of personalized communications is when brands send you emails about products you browsed, but didn’t buy, in the past.
According to a recent study by McKinsey, 77% of consumers demonstrated new shopping behaviors, including new channels, stores, and brands, since the pandemic began in the U.S. nearly two years ago.
Effective personalized communications have become more important in recent years given the surge of online engagement among consumers.
2. Forty-five percent of consumers say they make a major purchase with a brand monthly.
To improve this number, survey your customers and listen to everything they have to say about expectations and desires.
Build meaningful relationships with customers to keep them engaged and for them to have your brand top-of-mind.
Keep your conversations going with customers and figure out ways to reward them better and more frequently.
It’s clear that loyal customers have transacted quite a bit with brands, but to improve these areas, it’s about what happens around the purchases.
3. Sixty-five percent of consumers say they look for news about their favorite brands monthly, while almost one in four (23%) do it weekly.
On the flip side, 34% say they rarely or never look for news about their favorite brands online.
The good news is most loyal customers search for news about their favorite brands online, but more than one-third rarely or never does.
So, what does this mean?
Brands should engage with their customers more often on social media because that is where loyal consumers connect with their favorite brands online. Nine out of 10 consumers say they buy from brands they follow on social networks.
And when brands engage with their customers, they must be sure they are delivering valuable content. Brands can’t always control what the news says about them, but they can control the content they’re producing.
4. Forty-three percent of consumers say they look for local community events involving their favorite brands.
True loyalty goes beyond transactions and targets experiential events that make consumers feel like they’re part of a community. That exclusivity factor which comes from being a member of a special group represents true loyalty for consumers.
When consumers feel like they’re part of a special community, their loyalty is never in doubt.
Our study shows that 8% of consumers want to attend in-person events. When brands do this more often, they truly connect with their best customers and create lasting loyalty.
5. Sixty-four percent of consumers say they check their loyalty status/points monthly, while 36% check at least weekly.
There is some room for improvement here for brands, especially to engage more than one-third of your most loyal customers.
For consumers who are checking their loyalty status, brands can create incentivized engagements throughout the customer journey.
From watching educational videos, to answering profile surveys, to taking polls, to opting-in to brand communications, to following a brand on social channels, there are many ways to engage customers and impact their engagement levels.
But the bottom line is two-thirds of your consumers are checking their loyalty status often and there are great opportunities to build up between-purchase engagement.
Enticing solutions like sweepstakes, contests, offers, rebates, and social kickbacks keep customers engaged over time.
For consumers who aren’t checking their loyalty status, incentivize them with rewards for writing customer reviews? Those rewards could include product discounts or a free sample for every review.
You can incentivize consumers with social media rewards such as a discount for shares, or free items for submitting user-generated content.
6. Fifty-eight percent of consumers have rarely or never posted about their favorite brands on social media.
If you don’t have a robust brand presence on social media, there are compelling reasons to do so.
First, social media is where your customers are.
Second, engaging on social raises awareness about your brand and encourages customers to interact. More customers can learn more about your brand.
Third, social media is about having an ongoing conversation with your customers. That ongoing engagement will impact many to post positive thoughts about your brand.
Fourth, social media is a daily opportunity to write the narrative for your brand message and interact with your customers. It can show customers how transparent, trusting, and authentic your brand is.
To target that large percentage of consumers that has never posted about their favorite brands on social media, brands can run hashtag campaigns that either reward participants or charities.
For example, we worked on a social media campaign for Delta Airlines called the Delta Victory Pose Challenge Sweepstakes, which launched Feb. 7 and runs through March 13.
Participants can enter the sweepstakes by composing a new Instagram post sharing a remix video, using the provided reel of various victory poses, and posting on his/her Instagram page including the hashtags “#DeltaVictoryPose” and “#Sweepstakes” and tag @Delta to receive one (1) Entry into the Sweepstakes.
There will be a random drawing on or around March 14, 2022. Six lucky winners will receive two roundtrip Delta tickets (Main Cabin) to anywhere in the world that Delta flies to. Each prize is valued at $2,800.
Now That You Know The Most Common Ways Loyal Consumers Engage, You Can Improve On It
At the end of the day, it’s clear that your most loyal customers are going to buy your products and services.
But it’s what happens around those purchases that build more engagement over time.
So, remember to keep these points in mind.
Understand your customers’ expectations and desires. Ask the right questions to obtain information from your customers. Listen for what they like, what they don’t like, and what doesn’t make sense to them.
Optimizing your engagement efforts, including loyalty programs, means daily monitoring and frequent reporting to ensure everything is running smoothly for your customers.
This allows you to personalize your communications and make sure you’re making every engagement opportunity count.
To download the 2022 Customer Loyalty Data Study, click here.
If you’d like to chat about any of your customer engagement efforts, please feel free to contact us here.