The COVID-19 outbreak has brought many challenges around the world, particularly for business owners, no matter their industry. Some businesses had to close and are now beginning to reopen as a part of the phase one re-opening. Others remain closed, awaiting their opportunity to regain ground in the next phase of re-opening. For others, although allowed to remain open, business is down, but continuing.
Regardless of the current situation, your business can continue to use its loyalty program to maintain a loyal following that returns again and again, when business is back to normal. A sound loyalty program coupled with a positive business response in the time of Coronavirus can help you rise above the competition, even in this most challenging time. One thing is sure, marketing will never be the same, but these tips can help you respond properly to the new normal and come out on top!
The Impact of COVID-19 on Homes and Businesses
Stay-at-home orders and social distancing guidelines have left many retail brick-and-mortar businesses reeling, while those with eCommerce practices already in place find themselves busy, even in light of the Coronavirus pandemic. It is not surprising that consumers are making as many purchases as possible online, avoiding opportunities for infection at their favorite stores. Of course, online shopping means more browsing, which means businesses have had to up their marketing game to ensure they capture the attention of their customers.
Sales for essentials are booming – from food to toilet paper to cleaning supplies – but so have non-essentials like arts and crafts supplies, workout equipment and clothing, games, makeup, and more. People have also become more socially conscious, making donations to food banks, frontline workers, and other causes which means businesses that showcase their own dedication to similar community causes can attract the attention of their customers in a positive way.
Maintaining and Building on Your Loyal Customer Base During the Coronavirus Pandemic
In the time of COVID-19, customer experience and perception has become more important than ever. The businesses and brands which adapt quickly to the ever-changing landscape will likely emerge as future leaders with a growing loyal following.
Here are some ways you can build loyal customers during the Coronavirus pandemic:
- If you are open for business, whether face-to-face, online, or both, you need to stand out from your competition and deliver a positive shopping experience for your customers. In other words, shopping with your business should be worthwhile and offer value packed options for your customers. This could come in the form of enhancing your loyalty program to include extended return times, free shipping on all orders, curbside pickup, or other perks your customers would enjoy.
- Even if you are not open for business as usual, lending your company’s support to healthcare professionals and first responders is a great way to capture the attention of your loyal customers and new prospects as well. From manufacturing and distributing much needed masks, hand sanitizer, and cleaners to helping local food banks feed the hungry, there are plenty of options out there for charitable acts which can gain your business lots of positive social media shout outs!
- During the Coronavirus pandemic, keeping the lines of communication open with your loyal customers with virtual meetups, happy hours, live concerts, community games, tutorials, and more is key to maintaining and growing your loyal customer community. Take it a step further with what has been dubbed “infotainment” – marketing materials which entertain and inform while showcasing your brand perfectly. Infotainment is ideal for connecting with customers via their favorite social media platforms from Facebook to TikTok and every platform in between. Done well, this marketing trend will not only engage your current customers but get shared and garner new customers now and into the future.
- While you are hard at work building your customer base, be sure to keep them along with your employees safe. Provide an abundance of safety gear (masks, hand sanitizer, gloves, etc.) for your employees. For your customers, keep touch points clean, have hand sanitizer on site, as well as wipes for carts and baskets used by customers while shopping.
Whether you choose one or all these options, remember your goal is always serving your customers and community, maintaining your current loyal customers and turning prospects into loyal customers as well.
Adapt and Build Loyal Customers Even in the Time of COVID-19
Even during the Coronavirus pandemic and the coming phases of re-opening the country, these tips can help you adapt and build loyal customers who come back when everything returns to normal. Perxi can help. Contact us today and let’s get moving forward.