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Rewarding Your Customers: Part Three

Communicating

Small businesses often establish reward programs with the intention of giving back to loyal clients. In many cases, the customer is required to make x number of purchases or spend x number of dollars in order to be eligible for the reward. Sounds good, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, issues arise when the customer does not have any knowledge about the program and/or incentives in question, and subsequently purchases a similar product or service from another company. Both parties (the company and the customer) then miss out on the potential benefits of a rewarding, long-term business relationship. 
 

To avoid the pitfalls of miscommunication, it is important that you ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Does your company have a loyalty or rewards program?
  2. If so, is the program advertised regularly and in an effective manner?
  3. Are you certain that each and every customer knows about the programs you have available?
In all likelihood, the answer to both #2 and #3 is a resounding “no”. Having a reward program is all well and good, but it’s not going to do much for business if nobody knows about it. In fact, poor communication can hinder your relationship with your customers. It is crucial that you make an effort to contact patrons regularly and make yourself available in the event that you are needed. More specifically, when it comes to rewards, you need to make every effort possible to keep your customers informed and excited about your company’s reward policies. 
 
referral programs

Below are a few ways to keep your customers in the loop:

E-mail Marketing
Regular e-mails to your customers will keep them informed of any exciting promotions you have on the go. If your reward program is a continuous initiative, consider including a small blurb at the bottom of each e-mail blast so that it does not get missed.

Direct Mail
If you advertise your services by direct mail, be sure to include information about your various reward programs. Remember: this information could be the one differentiator between you and the competition.

Social Media
Use your company’s social media pages, such as Facebook and Twitter, to keep your customers up-to-date about any exciting reward campaigns. Social media is a great way to advertise ongoing promotions and new contests. 

Website
Highlight reward information on your website. Don’t bury it in a spot where it won’t be seen – ensure that it is clearly visible from the most highly-trafficked page(s) on your site.

You take great strides to keep your customers happy, but it is important that they know about your efforts and can actively reap the rewards. Communicate regularly and you’ll start to see results. 

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