Picture: 123RF/Le Moal Olivier
Picture: 123RF/Le Moal Olivier

Reasons for customer loyalty tend to vary across customer segments and can change over time. A customer’s level of commitment or loyalty is driven by motivators – things like price, value, quality, experience and convenience, just to name a few. The more motivators your customers have, the stronger their level of loyalty. 

Brands make significant investments into marketing and advertising to motivate customers to choose their brand. But though it can bring in the numbers, does it result in loyal customers?

Here are a few motivators we think brands should look at that determine buying behaviour and result in loyal customers:  

PriceIn a tough economy more and more South Africans are price conscious. However, someone can always beat your price, so the goal is to make your product or service affordable to your customers and tie it to the value it provides without compromising revenue or quality. 

ValueWhat’s the benefit of your product or service to your customers? Is it important to them, or useful? Does it solve a problem, fill a need or provide entertainment? Always evaluate how your value or benefits compare with your competition. 

QualityHow do customers perceive your product or service? Are you meeting customers’ expectations or, even better, exceed them?  

Experience: The reason consumers continue to buy – or not to buy – from a particular company is because of the experience. We remember both the good and bad experiences we’ve had during the buying process or while using the product or service. This plays a big part in whether or not we decide to purchase again from a company.  

ConvenienceLet’s face it, we’re all busy. We often buy things or go somewhere simply because it’s the easier choice. All too often, what makes customers loyal is that you’ve removed the headache of shopping around. Whether it’s buying online or going around the corner, we typically choose the most convenient option. We’ll do this even if it means spending a little more. In other words, sometimes convenience can trump price (as long as it’s within reason). If the price difference is worth the ease of buying or the time saved, we consider it money well spent.

Nostalgia and longevityIf your product or service taps into fond memories from a consumer’s past or has been around for a long time, there’s a good chance they will buy again and often be loyal to your brand over that of your competitors. 

SocialConsumers tend to be more loyal to a brand if they feel the company is socially responsible, has shared beliefs or gives back to the community. 

Trying to create a sense of loyalty based on a product is a difficult task. Products don’t create loyalty, because anyone in the market can duplicate your product. Remember, the more positive motivators consumers have for your brand, the more loyal they will be. 

  • Aimee Miller is marketing and sales manager at online retailer Teljoy.

 

The big take-out

Don’t motivate customers to choose your brand. Instead, create conditions that will motivate them to use it