September 1, 2023
The role of loyalty marketers has expanded, which is actually a positive development. Traditionally, loyalty marketers have focused on customer retention, enrichment, and advocacy after a purchase has been made. However, both brands and customers have faced unprecedented challenges in recent years, such as the pandemic, supply chain issues, and social unrest. As a result, brands are now placing a greater emphasis on building deep relationships with their customers to support them during difficult times.
To truly foster customer loyalty, B2C marketers are now enhancing experiences at earlier stages of the customer lifecycle.
Loyalty tactics are being used not only to retain existing customers but also to acquire new ones, assist them in making informed purchase decisions, and facilitate the onboarding process. Does this approach work? According to a global Marketing Survey for 2022, loyalty programs are one of the top five most effective owned marketing tactics at all stages of the customer lifecycle. Loyalty is a result of activities focused on customer retention, enrichment, advocacy, and acquisition. One of the most effective ways to cultivate loyalty is by creating emotional connections with customers throughout their journey.
Emotions drive behaviors, and data from Forrester's Customer Experience Benchmark Survey for 2022, focusing on US consumers, reveals that when customers feel appreciated, 88% intend to remain loyal to the brand, 83% plan to spend more, and 87% will advocate for the brand. There are opportunities throughout the entire customer lifecycle to incorporate loyalty initiatives that will foster loyalty among both existing customers and potential prospects.