How can local merchants compete against big national chains and e-commerce giants? The secret is all in the customer experience. Our recent survey shows that: 96% of consumers think local businesses beat big chains on personalized service. So how can you leverage this competitive advantage even more? Street Fight Magazine says go for the gold by fostering a hyper-local customer loyalty strategy via fun and unexpected perks like reward programs and gift cards:
“Have fun, and surprise your customers with a small reward like a $5 or $10 gift card redeemable on their next purchase. Hand out these random rewards to customers who you see doing a good deed for others or when you just feel like saying thank you. Unexpected perks can enhance loyalty and raise spending by as much as 10%. Post pictures of these customers on your social media pages and spread the word that you truly value their support of your business.”
But what if you don’t have the resources or staff to physically hand-out (or head up) gift card distribution in-store, or what if you don’t have a brick-and-mortar store in which to cultivate this program? Enter the power of email. Emailing rewards and gift cards gives you the flexibility to incentivize your most valuable customers – all from the simple push of a button. With email marketing automation platforms you can create and distribute a special offer in seconds. Simply select a template, customize your offer, and publish. Your offer will automatically be distributed via an email blast to your existing customer base, and it will also appear on your website and Facebook Business Page.
In addition to rewarding your most valued customers, emailing special offers also has the added benefit of re-engaging with customers who haven’t used your services recently so that you continue to stay top of mind.
Afraid of fatiguing your distribution lists? Don’t be. Our “Want Consumers Want” survey actually found that 69% of consumers prefer to be contacted via email by their local small businesses. Lastly – and here’s the best part – retaining customers with online offers is way less costly than acquiring new ones and it creates true brand ambassadors - happycustomers who are walking, talking (and free) advertisements for your business. Don’t believe us? Just watch these folks gushabout their favorite local businesses and why they can’t stay away.
Yodle connects consumers to local businesses simply and cost-effectively through its online marketing platform. Yodle currently serves more than 45,000 small business customers. This blog is used as a forum to provide key company updates and milestones, and to discuss important industry and business trends. Learn more.