Build Loyalty as a Differentiator

Have you ever asked yourself why supermarket brands spend so much money on loyalty programs? Almost all major supermarkets (except for the local stores in the estates) operate either a digital or physical card point accumulation and reward system for their customers.

These loyalty programs are used by brands to convert fence sitters to brand advocates and strengthen the relationship with the existing customers.

I still find myself looking for supermarkets that I have an active loyalty program with when I am in a new or unfamiliar territory. Leave alone the fact that I lost quite a huge number of points a few years back when one of the local chains ceased operations. Back then, I had way more fanatical buying habits than I do today. I was so committed to the programs that I would buy even walk into the supermarket just for 1 item. Every point counted!

Highly loyal customers generate a very predictable sales and profit stream. In fact, a brand without a loyal customer base is usually in a very vulnerable position as its reliance in acquiring new customers can sometimes be compromised during difficult economic times. Further, it is much less costly to retain existing customers that it is to attract new ones.

And while most businesses tend to take brand loyalty for granted, it helps enhance the value of the business in the long term.
But how can loyalty be enhanced when it comes to Personal Branding?

Brand loyalty in the context of Personal Branding means having an audience that is sold to who you are and what you stand for. As an individual looking to build a Personal Brand, not everyone will be interested in hearing about what you have to say. Therefore, for those who are sold to you, it becomes very important to invest time and energy in building loyalty by investing in what makes them tick. This is the only way to make it worthwhile for your audience.

For this to happen, you must build strong connections with your audience; be it online or offline, in the office or outside the office (industry). It is these connections that will buy into you or speak for you when called upon.

To build a strong connection for your personal brand:

Showcase your Expertise:
Your expertise makes your brand believable. By sharing valuable insights, tips, solutions, and best practices, you can position yourself as trusted authority and go-to resource for your audience.

Practice Reciprocity:
Reciprocity allows for 2-way engagement between you and your audience. Encourage feedback, respond to comments, and engage with your audience in meaningful ways. This will help build a sense of community and connection and show that you value their opinions and input.

Use Storytelling:
Openly share stories that reveal the real you. Authentic stories are more compelling than facts and sharing personal stories and experiences with your audience helps build trust and credibility. People are often drawn to authentic and relatable stories, and this can help to foster a strong connection between you as the brand and your community.

Be consistent:
Did you know that a familiar product will always have an edge over a new offering? Being consistent in the way you show up means you are building your familiarity factor, and hence increasing your brand’s awareness in the mind of the customer. Further, customers are constantly being bombarded with messages today and any inconsistencies could lead to confusion.

Strong personal brands create value first before they can lend to building a loyal following.

Building loyalty, whether for an organization or a personal brand, is a process that takes time and great effort. Bottom line is customers want to feel valued and appreciated, and if they sense that you are not putting in the effort to maintain a positive relationship with them, they will start looking elsewhere.

Show your audience love and attention and #standout4growth.

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