Even if you have built a creative loyalty program, you still need to put some effort into making sure your customers know about it. It’s more than just sending an email with a discount to your customer list - to succeed, you should look at the big picture. And by the big picture, we mean cross-promotion.
That’s why it’s a good idea to integrate your loyalty program into your overall marketing plan. This means you should cover your bases with social media, email, SMS marketing, your checkout page, mobile app if you have such.
In this blog post, we’ll give you six tips on using social media and SMS marketing to boost your loyalty program.
Segment your customers according to their degree of loyalty
First things first, don’t make a rookie mistake of using the same generic messaging for all of your customers. A person who has bought from you several times will have a different relationship with your brand than someone who didn’t return after the first purchase.
Analyze your data and divide your customers into separate groups based on their degree of loyalty to your brand.
Here are the three main categories where your customers fall to:
- Loyal customers
These are your customers who engage with your brand frequently and make regular purchases.
2. At-risk customers
Your customers who haven’t shopped with you for a while and may not feel strongly about your brand.
3. Churned customers
These customers are ones who never returned after their first purchase.
Once you have your segments ready, you’ll be able to target your customers with personalized ads. As a result, you will have a much better ROI (return on investment) than you’d have had otherwise if you simply sent a general message to all of your customers.
Build customer loyalty with Facebook Messenger
Around 1 billion people use Facebook Messenger around the world. And it’s not just a place for personal communication. Facebook data shows that of Americans who send messages daily, 61% of them have sent a message to a business in the past three months.
What does this mean to you as a business owner?
For one thing, Messenger is an ideal channel to engage with your customers because of its familiarity. By sending people who clicked on your Facebook ads to Messenger, you’ll be able to start a conversation with them right away. For another, you can get closer to your customers by showing that you’re approachable as a brand.
Connect your messenger with a chatbot
With a chatbot, you’ll be able to provide a follow-up and give answers to potential questions about your loyalty program on time, which is great both for customer experience and your resources.
If you never worked with message automation, check this blog post about choosing the best chatbot to get you started.
Invest in lookalike audiences for your Facebook ads
To maximize the reach of your loyalty program on Facebook, pay more attention to lookalike audiences.
If you’re not familiar with the term, a lookalike audience is an audience that is created based on your existing customers. It helps you to reach and connect with people who are likely to be interested in your brand.
You can create your lookalike audiences based on different closeness levels to your core audience of choice, ranging from 1 to 10% (1% being those who most likely match your source audience).
You can find more information on how to create lookalike audiences here.
Make explainer videos
As for the ads themselves, don’t limit yourself only to an image format. Though images are relatively cheap and quick to produce, in most cases, videos will grab users’ attention quicker when scrolling their social media feed.
Of course, the bottom line is - use a mix of content types for different purposes. But if you need to catch attention, explain how your loyalty program works, and show its benefits, an explainer video is your best choice.
Show how and why your customers should join your loyalty program. Don’t just assume that people automatically get the point of being a part of your program only because there’s an element of reward in it.
How an explainer video looks
Asana, a project management tool, did a great job explaining its features in a straightforward, easy to understand, and catchy manner by combining animation and screen recording of the app.
Apply the same principles to make an explainer video for your loyalty program, and you will have a great piece of content to last - you can use it for ads, embed in your email campaigns, and on your online store.
Make sure to highlight your signup incentive, how to get started, and breakdown the reward structure.
Use SMS marketing
SMS marketing messages have a 98% open rate, but what makes them so effective? It’s pretty straightforward - SMS messages are hyper-personalized, short, and direct.
What does this mean to you?
You have a 98% chance of getting your marketing message across and building your Shopify brand loyalty.
A few ways to use SMS messages to build loyalty with your brand:
- Notify your customers about their accumulating reward points for purchases.
- Use SMS as an additional touchpoint to let your customers know about your ongoing special offers to urge a spontaneous action. You can learn how to prepare for such offers like Black Friday and Cyber Monday here.
- Inform about exclusive deals only for loyalty program members.
- Send birthday coupons to make your customers feel special and seen.
Privy launched over 60 free SMS marketing templates that can be customized to any of your current marketing strategies, including a loyalty program.
Grow and foster communities on Facebook groups
If you’re ready to roll up your sleeves and leave your competitors way behind for good, work on creating and fostering communities around your loyalty program. Think private Facebook groups, a separate Twitter account, dedicated branded hashtags on Instagram.
First of all, if you don’t have a Facebook group for your brand, it’s about time you created one.
Since 2019, Facebook has become much more group-centric. Facebook group posts are prioritized in news feeds. Brand content posted on Facebook groups has a much better chance of reaching your customers organically than content from Pages.
And it’s not just about organic reach. You can also already run ads in Facebook groups, which also means more possibilities to monetize Facebook groups. Such ads are placed next to community posts in the Facebook Groups tab. You can create single image ads for Reach, Offsite Conversions or Link Click objectives.
Encourage your customers to discuss your products on your Facebook group
Have your community discuss your products and / or services in your Facebook group. Encourage your customers to vote for the most useful and elaborate insights, and reward both the authors and active participants in the discussion.
This way, you’ll not only keep on spreading awareness about your brand but will also get genuine information about your products and will be able to improve your business model if you recognize a need for it.
How to get the discussion going?
Besides posting about this request on your group itself, shared about it on your Facebook page, let people know of your Facebook group loyalty program in your newsletters. To get the ball rolling, suggest a few talking points to get people thinking. Do this regularly and your group activity will build up over time.
Wrapping it up
Don’t start with everything at once to push your loyalty program. First, figure out the segmentation of your customers. See how they fall into categories based on their loyalty so you could personalize your promotional messaging to get the most results from it.
Then, work on improving your social media presence: spend more time polishing your lookalike audiences for Facebook ads and foster your presence on Facebook groups to create a community of your loyal customers.
Once you get the group thing going, add SMS marketing to cover more touchpoints with your users. Finally, include other marketing channels like email, or work on improving your online store’s UX.
Remember - getting new customers is five times more expensive than retaining current ones, so it’s all worth it! Work on building your brand loyalty and enjoy a regular cash flow!
This is a guest post by Julija Televiciute, a freelance copywriter at sixads. Sixads is an app that provides ad exchange and ad automation services for online stores. Specialized in copywriting, social media, and dog memes, she helps businesses get creative with ideas for content that creates value and sells.
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