In our last post, we discussed what makes the Member Retention Rate important and how to calculate it. It's the best metric to use when measuring community loyalty. In combination with a low churn rate, a high member retention rate would help you understand whether you're losing members or growing your community.
The biggest benefit for you? You also reduce your customer cost of acquisition. It's easier to keep members than bringing in new ones, so as a community manager, make sure that you keep your eye on that member retention rate.
Based on our experiences with our customers, we've compiled a list of tactics that would help you generate member loyalty and two that would scare them away.
Building experiences in your community
Build your community to add value to your brand. Don’t just sell a product, sell an experience that your customers can join in. Facilitate conversations between your customers. That doesn’t mean you need to be on every social platform, but on the ones that your target audience uses the most. However, make sure that your community provides some value. They will only participate in your community if it helps them in their daily lives or jobs.
Create passionate fans
Identify your super-users and make them your brand advocates or even moderators. Reward your most passionate fans by giving them exclusive access to information the general public doesn’t get. Give top customers and members sneak peaks at things you haven’t released to the public yet, special offers like pre-order for only a select few, and let them in on “secrets” so that they feel like they are ahead of the crowd. Harley Davidson’s own community – the HOGS are a great example in celebrating their top customers.
Dig deep into your ideal customer
Get as much data as you can on your members. Always know exactly who your “perfect customer” is when creating messaging and marketing strategies. Add social and behavioural data from your customers’ online activity and get a wider picture on their behaviour. Learn about their content consumption, discussions they are participating and what they enjoy. Feed this data to your customer support and marketing team which will help them address customer concerns before it becomes a problem.
Keep them coming back using retargeting
Retargeting is one of the more powerful tactics you have in your marketing arsenal. With brand recall and higher engagement being the result. Aim for 0.4% CTR on your ad creative and shoot for retargeting 84% of your new traffic. You do this by retargeting those who already purchased through email marketing, social sharing and customer loyalty programs like perks programs and discounts.
Reasons why your member leaves
Poor membership communications
When it’s extremely easy for a customer to switch brands whenever there is a problem, don’t give them your members any opportunity to. Provide your member multiple ways to reach out to you in many ways as possible – from social media to email. And respond quickly.
Set response benchmarks and aim for less than 1 hour response times and reduce number of open discussions or problem emails.
Ignoring your most loyal members
One of the maxim of marketing is that keeping existing members is much easier than acquiring new ones. Rewarding your loyal customers should be a given, through providing discounts to even freebies. However, reward referrals and non-purchase actions such as joining an email list, helping other customers and even social media shares.
Make your loyal members feel valued by encouraging their feedback on your product or service (and most importantly, acting on that feedback). When they feel that their opinions are valued, they become invested in the success of the company and community.
Member retention should be the second most important goal next to acquisition. By reducing churn, you add incremental revenue to the bottom-line. The best strategy in increasing retention is through providing a great community experience, connecting and rewarding your most loyal customers and building a community.