Ways to Build Customer Loyalty

Loyal customers are the “holy grail” for any company. While there are many different strategies for increasing customer loyalty, a lot depends on the individual business and the industry in which it thrives. The hardwood lumber industry is no exception. For many companies, the one approach could be focusing on building a strong community that values what you do and is loyal to your brand.

Here at Baillie Lumber, we strive to increase our market communications and drive brand awareness. It is a way for us to connect and develop new customers and solidify our relationships with existing customers. Our focus our being a resource for our customers and working hard to be a trusted hardwood advisor and supplier is paramount in our efforts.CustomerLoyalty

If you’re looking to build or solidify a community around your brand, here are few suggestions we have found helpful.

Focus on Sharing with Your Community 

Your brand community is “more than just a powerful business tool,” notes Oktopost, a social media management software platform. This community enables “all of your customers [to] come together to learn, share, and interact with your brand.” Interaction can range from promoting a forthcoming new product launch and providing in-depth “how-to” information regarding the best use of your product or service.

By using a variety of communication mediums (Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, email blasts, etc.) you can educate your brand community with your blog posts, newsletters, videos, and other relevant content. This allows you to connect with customers and keep them up to date on new offerings and updates that benefit could them.

We have found this particularly useful when promoting specialty products like our Super Prime White Oak, Cabinet Grade Cherry, or Walnut Prime Strips. It has also been effective when we are trying to educate our customers on continuous quality improvement efforts we have been working such as the addition of T-sheds, new dry, etc.

Whatever the purpose, use that as your community-building strategy, with the goal of “giving every member a rewarding community experience.”

Choose the best platform. 

In today’s world, being part of a brand community involves interacting with others on one or more social media platforms. You and your customers likely conduct a fair amount of business online, so it makes sense to boost your company’s presence on social media.

Facebook pages are an obvious place to “house” your brand community. On your own Facebook page, you can regularly update customers on product developments and related business information. You can also offer links to your website and additional customer-friendly information.

Another valuable platform is LinkedIn. Probably, all or nearly all of your potential new customers already belong to LinkedIn. You can easily search for promising referral candidates through industry groups and other easy-to-find categories. Reach out to select individuals and begin the connecting process that can lead to bigger things.

Make sure your website is regularly updated. 

There’s nothing like a static business website to “turn off” potential brand community members. As we have noted before, these elements are key to making your site appealing to others:

  • Easy navigation throughout the website
  • Your company’s value proposition visible on all web pages
  • A clear, prominent call-to-action for interested viewers

If your website has looked the same for a long time (even a matter of six months), “it’s likely time to evaluate the need for a website redesign” or “you risk losing valuable business [and brand-building] opportunities.”

Build a Customer-Centric Culture 

As we have mentioned before in previous writings, it is important to put the customer at the center of all you do. When you do it could influence everything from hiring decisions to product development and design. When you are successful in doing so your customers will love you and loyalty will follow!

In your efforts to build customer loyalty, what methods have you found effective? What worked for you? Let us know. We would love to hear your thoughts.

Brett Del Prince
Baillie Lumber
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

PS……  Check out our other blog on building customer loyalty!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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