How to Build Customer Loyalty During the Holiday Season

The holidays give you a unique annual opportunity to build goodwill with customers that can last all year and promote long-term loyalty. Because of this, knowing how to build customer loyalty during the holidays greatly strengthens your ability to cultivate stronger relationships with your customers.

You can use a number of methods to promote customer loyalty during the holiday season. These include sending appreciation messages, giving gifts, offering discounts and adding referral incentives. Read on to learn more about how to build customer loyalty over the holidays.

4 ways to build customer loyalty1. Send Holiday Appreciation Messages

If you’re looking for how to build customer loyalty during the holidays, one of the simplest strategies you can use is sending holiday appreciation messages. The holidays provide a natural occasion to thank customers for their business year-round. This reinforces the relationship you’ve built with customers over the course of the year and keeps your brand top-of-mind going into the New Year.

This strategy can be used to thank both current customers and inactive customers who may not have purchased from you or logged in for a while. Another great thing about appreciation messages is that they don’t cost you anything to send.

Using technology can enable you to increase the effectiveness of holiday appreciation messages. For example, you can segment your customer database to make your messages more personalized. Customers who have purchased an exceptional amount from you over the past year might get a special message thanking them for being among your most loyal customers. Customers who’ve been with you more than one year might get a special anniversary thank-you.

Appreciation messages can also be customized to reach out to inactive or dissatisfied customers. Use KPIs for product usage and customer satisfaction to monitor disengaged customers and trigger automated appreciation messages. This can help you prevent customer churn in the process of building loyalty.

2. Give Customers Holiday Gifts

Telling customers you appreciate them is one thing, showing it is another. Giving holiday gifts expresses your appreciation in a tangible way, putting your money where your mouth is. Customers, in turn, will appreciate your gifts and will be inclined to reciprocate by renewing their subscriptions or making additional purchases.

The best gifts are those your customers truly want. Lay a foundation for gift-giving by conducting market research during the year to find out what types of features, benefits, products, and services most appeal to your customer base. You can then design gifts that will appeal to your customers.

Examples of meaningful but affordable gift ideas include:

  • Unlocking additional product features, which can increase engagement as well as build loyalty
  • Access to other products
  • Free services
  • Free or discounted use of apps provided by promotional partners whose products fit well with the needs of your own customer base but do not compete with your products

As with consumer gifts, when all else fails, give money. Customers always appreciate monetary rebates and rewards. However, make sure you limit monetary gifts to an amount that will not cut unduly into your profit margin. Do a cost-benefit analysis when determining the price point of gifts.

Technology can assist you with customizing your gift-giving. You can segment your customer base to give different gifts to different customer categories. For example, customers who have purchased a particular product or who use a particular feature might especially appreciate a specific type of gift.

3. Offer Holiday Promotional Discounts

A way to build loyalty and generate revenue at the same time is by extending holiday discount sales offers. This extends holiday goodwill to customers while supporting your sales efforts.

There are several ways you can apply this strategy:

  • Offering discounts to customers who complete the renewal process before the holidays are over
  • Offering discounts for customers who make upsell purchases during the holidays
  • Offering discounts for customers who make cross-sell purchases of additional products or services

Different offers will appeal to different segments of your customer base. Use your customer data to segment customers into categories for more personalized offers.

4. Add Holiday Referral Incentives

Another way to build loyalty during the holidays is to reward customers who demonstrate loyalty by making referrals. You can offer customers who make referrals incentives such as discounts, bonuses, and rewards. You can increase the effectiveness of your referral offer by offering similar incentives for new customers who respond to referral offers.

Customers with high satisfaction are most likely to promote your brand through referrals. Use KPIs such as Net Promoter Score and customer health score to identify your best potential promoters.

Build Holiday Goodwill to Cultivate Customer Loyalty All Year

Knowing how to build customer loyalty pays off extra during the holidays when goodwill is in the air and provides a natural opportunity to promote stronger customer relationships. Sending appreciation messages is a simple way to let customers know you value their business. Gifts show your appreciation in a concrete way which elicits reciprocal appreciation. Promotional discounts support your sales strategy as well as strengthen customer relationships, encouraging renewals, upsells, and other offers. Referral incentives invite customers to promote you to friends and colleagues during the holidays.

Totango’s customer success platform provides tools to help you implement these strategies, such as customer satisfaction monitoring KPIs to help you identify customers who might be most open to referral invitations. Try it free to give yourself a holiday gift that can increase your sales throughout the year.

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