Recently, an email dropped into my inbox from a reputable and widely used company. The subject line read,"5 loyalty hacks for your business". And boy did it get me angry.
I don't like throwing shade about how people do business, but I've got to be honest with you guys (just in case they catch you out!)
There is no such fucking thing as a "loyalty hack".
Loyalty is about the lifetime relationship you can build with your customers. Hacks are, by definition, short term. They're short cuts, cutting corners and they don't deliver lasting results.
Now, you might think I'm being pedantic, but it's about misleading people under the guise of giving them great advice. That heading very much implies that there's a quick, easy way for you to do something that realistically takes time, hard work and the occasional bout of tears.
As I talked about in my blog post
about content mattering more than stats, we shouldn't be so concerned about numbers as we are the quality of what we're putting out there. And that is exactly what hacks are for - boosting numbers, without the necessary quality to yield anything more than an artificial result. If you want to look out for your customers and create a long-lasting relationship, you only have to do one thing.
That's right, one. It's hard work, it takes time and it means getting a bit braver:
Just be yourself.
If you're reading this then you're likely a small business owner. So why would people choose you over the convenience of the high street?
It's you. If your customer feels they know you, they're going to want to support you. They'll want to keep up with you, will crave behind the scenes content and, when you release your next product/service/campaign, they'll be right there with you, cheerleading you on.
So let's take a minute. Pull up your website or your Instagram
1. Are there photos of you?
Can people see what you look like and do they know the lovely lady behind the products? Your face, whether you like it or not, is part of your brand when you are a small business owner. Your face makes you different to the big brands out there.
2. What does your bio say about you?
Make sure you're writing about not just what you do, but why you do it. For example, I make creative wares for feminist babes to help me fellow feminists shout from the rooftops about equality. Right there you have my why. You know who I'm trying to talk to, you know what drives me to make my business a success.
3. Are you showing your process?
A really simple way you can show yourself in your work is by taking pictures of you making it. All of my sketches/lettering posts have my hands in them.
Why? Because my hands created them.
Why not take a few products and photograph them with your #handinframe/tools around it?
So instead of wasting time on "hacks", start putting yourself out there, and let your audience get to know you better!