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Customer Care 2.0

This article by Rahul Tekwani, Managing partner, Branding Edge Strategic Communications and Advisory, delves into the right approach for customer interaction to be followed by marketers and brands

Rahul Tekwani

Over the last eighteen months, there has been a huge shift in the way customers engage and interact with their favourite brands, and this is not a passing fad. In future, marketers must view the cultivation and retention of loyal consumers as a critical component of corporate success.

As a result, here are a few of the loyalty lessons that can be grasped:

1. The customer experience must be prioritised

It is apparent that customers are more concerned than ever before about their purchasing experience. Indeed, according to studies, 80 percent of consumers consider the purchase experience to be "equally as essential" as the quality of product or service itself, and two-thirds (66 percent) want firms to understand their specific requirements and expectations.

Customer experience is crucial in the post-pandemic era; it's not just about sales and income anymore.

Brands need to improve their communication skills and add additional personalised messages to campaigns, whenever it’s feasible, so you're not only communicating for the sake of communicating, but also delivering value to the consumer.

2. Having more channels means having more chances

The number of channels via which customers interact with companies has increased in the recent months. Customers want a better customer experience, both online and offline, now more than ever.

As a result, multichannel communication is increasingly becoming vital in the post-pandemic society, where the purchasing experience must be quick, visible, and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week across various types of media. Personalised communications must become more engaging in order to replace an offline purchasing experience; therefore, marketers should experiment with and test various forms of content.

3. It all boils down to data

Data insight is critical in the post-pandemic environment. Marketers should uncover and test new patterns that have emerged in the past 18 months. Your client base would be altered as a result of the epidemic and, therefore, your customers' expectations have changed too.

As per reports, 80 percent of customers who tried a new brand stated they would buy from them again. Understanding who these people are and how they interact with your business will be critical for retaining them as loyal customers.

Marketers should be seeking inputs to do this. Don't be scared to ask your clients what they want on a frequent basis, rather than once every five years. Sending a free gift with a transaction, but in exchange asking them to share their views, in order to gather insights into what they think is effective, is something we've seen works extremely well. This information should then be utilised to decide the next course of action for that particular consumer.

4. Reward your devoted consumers

Brands that engage in random acts of kindness, targeted towards individuals, often have the most success in retaining loyal clients. While a loyalty program is not required, it is certainly beneficial to the brand.

This is especially true in the post-pandemic era, when majority of the customers are now members of at least one incentive system.

What's more crucial than ever is putting in place a system that allows you to treat your loyal clients differently - giving them access to things before others, such as early access to sale events, or sending them event notices ahead of the rest of the public to make them feel special.

This also enables you to motivate and develop your own loyal client base by showcasing what they would’ve missed out on if they weren’t a part of that exclusive club. Brands should also create a welcome journey and a retention program that addresses both eventualities, to the maximum possible extent.

5. Customer loyalty is not a one-size-fits-all proposition

While loyalty programs, customised discounts, and early access are excellent strategies to recruit and retain loyal clients, as a marketer the most essential lesson for me is that in the world we live in today, as a result of technological improvements like social media, customers want to be treated as people. They want a smooth and rapid experience, and they want it in a way that suits them.

So, how do you go about putting customised marketing content campaigns in place for individuals? There are other approaches, and as previously said, data is essential. Marketing automation, in my view, is a cost-effective and efficient approach to collect all of your customer data, analyse it, and send client-specific content and messages at the appropriate time and on the correct platform for each customer, based on where they are in the customer lifecycle.

(Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author. The facts and opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of and we do not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.)

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