If there’s one age group that businesses are keen on securing loyalty from, it’s millennials. Born between 1981 and 1996, these technologically savvy and brand-conscious individuals are all about authenticity and recognition. Building from these touchpoints, businesses can go to great lengths to secure lifelong customers from the millennial generation. For ideas on how to do so, consider the following points on how to build customer loyalty among millennials.
Appeal to the Emotions
Millennials don’t just want to purchase a product; they want to purchase a product that has a purpose and adheres to a positive set of values. While so much of our world changes regularly, millennials have homed in on the fact that values are a constant. One way that businesses can appeal to a millennial customer’s moral compass is by targeting their emotions. From soothing soaps to energizing lotions and stress-reducing organization apps, marketing that makes an emotional impact is sure to build loyalty from this critical generation.
Use the Power of People
Social media is a major part of the typical millennial’s life. While they don’t tune in as much to radio and TV commercials, they do get a great deal of exposure to products via Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and other platforms. Businesses can build millennial loyalty by creating social media pages that are informative, engaging, and responsive. Social media:
- Allows businesses to have a relevant (and constant) presence.
- Allows followers and customers to comment about their love of the brand or the brand’s products, creating conversation.
- Allows businesses to step favorably into the conversation, creating a sense of familiarity and attachment in millennial customers that isn’t possible through other means of marketing.
Traditional marketing methods just don’t mesh well with millennials. One of the most innovative and successful means of marketing isn’t with billboards, TV commercials, or window signs; it’s through social media influencers. Whether it’s a celebrity or influencer-turned-celebrity, these individuals are an amazing resource to promote a product. There are even companies dedicated to matching businesses with the right influencer.
Make It Mobile
With so many millennials on mobile phones, companies can increase customer loyalty (and sales) by ensuring that their websites are mobile-friendly. When millennials can shop, browse, and find the answers they’re looking for on their phones, they’re much more likely to form a connection to a brand and follow through on that purchase, inquiry, or email list signup form.
Give Them All the Info
Millennials are avid researchers. They want to purchase the best product for their budget, lifestyle, and needs. They do most of their research about a product on their mobile phones—even if they’re physically standing in the store! That’s just one more reason why websites should be mobile-friendly and include helpful resource pages, blog posts, and product descriptions. Reviews are another bonus.
Build a Community
While many criticize millennials for being anti-social because they’re on their devices so much, the opposite is true! Millennials love community, whether it’s around their favorite video game, music artist, or clothing line. By creating a community around a business, brand, or product, companies can really win over this up-and-coming generation.
But how do companies build an entire community? One way is to create a fan page on social media. This strategy works exceptionally well when a brand or brand mascot interacts in real time on a regular basis with fans (and customers). Another way is to create an exclusive club in which customers have to sign up to join. As a member of this club, customers can get exclusive access to deals, gift cards, “secret” or rare items, and so much more.
Create a Cause
Just like millennials love that emotional hook mentioned above, they also love to support a good cause. Companies can earn a millennial’s loyalty by heading away from the corporate and profit-oriented entity in favor of a down-to-earth and value-driven organization. There are many ways to accomplish this feat.
For example, you can tell your company’s story in a way that appeals to emotions, stirs the heart, and causes people to relate. Then, share this story everywhere. Make it a part of your branding, your packaging, and your social media pages.
Another way includes partnering with a charity that complements your company’s story and values. If your company’s founder was a single mother, partner with the YWCA. If two animal lovers started your company, partner with an animal shelter. You will likely gain even more customers through your partnership.
If there’s one thing to know about the millennial generation, it’s that they can see through a phony gimmick in a fraction of a second. And when they realize it’s less than genuine—be it a company mission statement or a business itself—they will not support it. Millennials love authenticity, and this is one factor that businesses should focus on to gain their loyalty. If your mission statement, value system, or any other facet of your company is not genuine, risk vulnerability to make a change. Your millennial customer base will reward you for it!
As with any human, millennials love to receive attention and rewards for their efforts. A major way to build customer loyalty with millennials is through tokens of appreciation. Businesses can hand out physical gift cards with receipts in brick-and-mortar locations as an incentive to buy more and express their appreciation. With more and more online shopping taking place, especially over the holiday season, companies can send e-gift cards to customers’ email addresses. Businesses can also create excitement by sharing an e-gift card code to social media pages for all their followers to take advantage of.
With so many ways to reward customers, loyalty management software is a helpful investment for businesses of all sizes—especially businesses that distribute e-gift cards. This software allows companies to track which gift cards they’ve sent to whom, how many gift cards have been used, and more. Companies can also learn more about their customers’ spending habits, which allows them to home in on their branding and future product lines.