Listen up brands. The word on the street in 2022 – well, the digital marketing street – is that loyalty programs are dead. If you want customer retention, you need to build a brand community. A community of customers emotionally affiliated with you and your products, enjoying exclusive benefits and a sense of belonging and purpose. How do you do it? A content writer could be your secret weapon.
How To Increase Customer Retention. The Community Approach
Last year the Harvard Business Review published a piece on loyalty programs. In it, without much preface, it set out the core problem with traditional systems employed by businesses all over the world. Those loyalty programs have nothing to do with loyalty. They’re about economic transactions, about bribing customers to return to your brand. True loyalty, it argues, is driven by an emotional affiliation. And that’s where a membership community comes in.
On-Brand Content Is An Integral Part of Membership Communities
Great brand content has the power to leverage your customers’ emotions. Communicate your brand identity, your values, and your mission clearly and you’ll engage the hearts of your target audience. Much more valuable and powerful than a returning customer discount code. So how can a content writer put this power into action?
Your customers don’t know if they feel an affiliation to your values if you’re not telling your brand story. Brand storytelling is less about what you sell or the services you offer and more about the why. Why did you start up in the first place? Why is your team motivated to work for you? Good storytelling puts your customers at its heart, and in return, speaks to their hearts. Your customers start to feel like they belong.
Consistent Communications Across All Customer Touchpoints
A strong brand identity is driven by consistency. A content writer can help you make sure your authentic voice comes across in all customer communications — and that your values and mission are clear across all customer touchpoints. When your voice is consistent — whether in social posts, emails, product copy, or loyalty rewards — your customer can immediately recognize and feel a part of your brand.
Membership-Only Content: Brand Articles, A Brand Blog, And More
Membership communities help your customers feel valued and respected. Reward their loyalty with discounts, yes. But also use exclusive members’-only content that can’t be found by googling voucher codes. This content could fulfill a customer need — for example, brand articles reviewing products or sharing industry insights — or it could be more aspirational to cement your customer’s sense of affiliation. Think along the lines of a brand blog for members full of exclusive healthy recipes, or interviews with high-profile brand ambassadors.
Membership communities also allow your customers to interact with your team. Lego, for example, rewards its legions of loyal customers with the chance to share their own creations. The best ideas have the chance to become real-life Lego’s next big thing.
A brand community has power when it comes to customer retention. Don’t just bribe your customers into returning to your brand. Hook them emotionally — through consistent, engaging written content — and they’ll be yours for life.