A very often overlooked part of generating sales leads is customer retention, or how likely those leads will stick and return for more business. This is what makes quality leads, and should be the main focus of any marketing. Loyal customers are the backbone of any business, as they will stick with you during the roughest of times, be more forgiving of any mistakes or problems and more likely to talk well about your company by word of mouth. But what exactly creates returning customers?
To really understand why people choose the brands that they do involves digging into the underlying psychology of the human mind. A lot of choices people make are not even understood by themselves, but advertising and marketing groups invest a lot of capital into controlling these hidden forces. First and foremost, what brings people to choose an identity? This plays a large role in everything someone does, for instant we have people that buy Apple products and those that buy Microsoft. Now you may not think of these as distinct groups with identity but they actually are when you get down to it. Communities form that then create their own culture, and people start to treat them with the same in/out group preferences and behaviors that they would with say a country. So, what underlies all of this? Values.
People like feeling a sense of belonging, and an integral part of that are shared values. What is your company about and what is it striving to achieve. A message that invokes a higher purpose, more than just profits, is what people want to see. This also makes them get a sense that they are contributing to it as well whenever they buy your products. This is why certain people gravitate towards different companies like Apple or Microsoft; the values behind the ideas of the company. Just think, would you like to give money to a company that is doing things not in harmony with what you believe? It’s a very subtle thing, but making sure what you stand for gets across, whether consciously in minds or subconsciously, is key to fostering a loyal customer base.
Now all of this is of course going to be meaningless without a good product, or at least not as effective. Product, price, involvement, these three things are what gets customers to you, and then hold them. With shared values playing a large part in involvement. We will explore these other parts and products and price in the future, but for now think about what the values of you and your company are and have it color your marketing and message.