Loyalty Programs Millennials | Group of students looking at their phones

Improve Millennials’ Experience with a Targeted Loyalty Program

Guest Poster: Kristen Gramigna

BlueKristen Gramigna is Chief Marketing Officer for BluePay, a credit card processing firm, and also serves on its Board of Directors. She has more than 15 years experience in the bankcard industry in direct sales, sales management and marketing.


Building a base of loyal customers can be one of the most effective ways to increase your profitability and optimize your customer acquisition costs, but what does it take to win the favor of Millennials (consumers who are currently between 18 to 34 years old)? Here’s a look at how to target Millennials effectively through loyalty programs.

Know what they really value.

A recent study by Bond Brand Loyalty found that nearly 70 percent of those surveyed said they’d change where they shop because of the presence of a quality loyalty program, indicating that Millennials are highly responsive to retailer loyalty programs. However, they’re not attracted for the same reasons as the general population, which tends to value loyalty program discounts first and foremost. Instead, the degree to which the loyalty program includes components of social sharing and acknowledges the Millennial consumer in a way that gives them the opportunity to feel a part of a business matters more than money-saving offers.

Incorporate social sharing elements into Millennial loyalty programs with tactics like VIP sales that acknowledge the consumer’s participation in the event on social media, campaigns that invite customers to create their own images and content and share them on social channels like Instagram, YouTube and Pinterest, and social media contests that invite participation in product development and marketing concepts. Read More

Customer Experience Statistics | Line Graph

9 Customer Experience Statistics to Refocus Your Team

Customer-facing professionals need to know not only the scope of the challenges they face but also the results that stem from their actions. Statistics centered around the customer experience can help bridge the gap between performance and results.

Customer Experience Statistics | Line GraphThe 9 statistics below are categorized into three important customer experience areas: customer loyalty, customer effort, and social customer service.

These facts can help you recharge and refocus your teams and can motivate them to provide the best possible service to your customers.

Customer Loyalty

  • 82% of consumers in the United States said they stopped doing business with a company due to a poor customer experience.

Your customers’ definition of a “poor customer experience” can range from simple things like not being acknowledged to challenging scenarios like delivering an expensive and time-sensitive product to the wrong address. Once a customer switches to a competitor, you won’t have the chance to make it right, and you risk losing their business for life.

  • It can be ten times more expensive to win a customer than to retain one, and the cost of bringing a new customer to same level of profitability as the lost one can be up to sixteen times more.

Imagine the amount of money your company will save — and make — simply by keeping the customers you already have. Higher profits create a healthier business; for frontline employees, this can lead to better pay, more functional teams, less turnover, and bigger budgets for providing even more great customer service.
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What Marketing Needs to Know About Customer Loyalty

What Marketing Needs to Know About Customer Loyalty (Infographic)

Customer retention and loyalty are significant profit drivers for most organizations, as we demonstrated in our own customer retention infographic a few months ago. In most cases, retaining existing customers is more profitable than acquiring new ones.

Are you spending more on marketing than you are on maintaining your current customer base? Statistics on retention like the ones below show that you might want to evaluate that strategy in your own industry and organization.

The folks at Keepify sent us the below infographic: 14 Customer Experience Facts Marketers Can’t Ignore that contains a nice packaging of statistics on customer retention and loyalty.

Read through the infographic and let us know what you think… Read More

Customer Retention by the Numbers | Customer Service Infographic

When Customers Stick: Customer Retention by the Numbers (Infographic)

From small businesses to huge corporations, everyone wants to know the secret to keeping customers. How do we earn repeat business for years and years to come?

In the infographic below, we use various customer retention statistics to break down the three most important aspects of customer retention:

  • Why Customers Leave
  • Why Customers Stick, and
  • Why Retained Customers Mean Money

Understanding customer retention begins with understanding the drivers behind customer loyalty and defection, then this understanding must be supported by organizational buy-in to the economic benefits of retention. The retention statistics below can support this process in your organization.

We hope you enjoy the infographic. Please feel free to share it with your colleagues and communities. Read More

What Is a Customer Worth? | SlideShare ScreenShot

What Is a Customer Worth? Customer Lifetime Value via SlideShare

On November 29, 2011 we posted a “back of the napkin” guide for calculating the economic value a customer brings over their “lifetime” with a business. We designed Understanding Customer Lifetime Value: A Non-Geek’s Guide as a thorough, yet non-academic, approach to determining the lifetime value of customers

The step-by-step process of determining customer lifetime value seemed like a natural fit for SlideShare, so we decided to re-release the post in a presentation format.

See below to learn more about Customer Lifetime Value and for tips to make better decisions about marketing and retention.


How Often Should We Post | Blog Posting Frequency Grid

Monthly Mash and How Often Should We Blog?

Welcome to the Monthly Mash, a mashup of tools, tales and tips on customer service and the customer experience from around the blogosphere.

Volume 13: November 2012

Thoughts On The Customer: Reflections on 100 Blog Posts and Posting Frequency

This Monthly Mash is our 100th blog post, and I thought it would be a good time to discuss the concept of posting frequency. Currently, we publish twice a week here at CTS, and with a few minor hiccups, have consistently delivered a post every Monday and Thursday for awhile now.

However, 100 blog posts is a relative milestone, and even for a single author blog like CTS, it seems fairly insubstantial.

So, this 100th post has sparked some strategic analysis about a topic that many blogs struggle with: what is the optimal frequency of content delivery?

To begin, let’s look at the numbers.

At 2 posts per week, it takes Customers That Stick almost a full year to produce 100 posts.

How Often Should We Post | Blog Posting Frequency GridIf we move to 3 posts per week, which we are considering for 2013, that’s 150 posts a year. Over 5 years, that equates to over 250 more pieces of content.

As you can see, an incremental weekly increase adds up fast.

When evaluating this change, we also have to consider our niche. In the customer service/customer experience field, the content production per blog is much less on average (at least as far as I can tell) than it is in other fields such as marketing, social media or blogging.

Very few blogs, and no single author blogs, that I read in the custserv/custexp field clock in more than 3 times a week. In fact, most blogs, (ironically, considering what most preach about consistency in service) seem to be fairly inconsistent with content production.

Of course, the reason is obvious. In most cases, the blogs in the customer service sphere are more disconnected from the real world economic drivers of their authors than say those in marketing and social media.

In fact, the most consistently prolific blog I read regularly is not from the custserv /custexp field but from the public relations field, Gini Dietrich’s Spin Sucks. Gini and her team produce 11 posts a week. That’s 100 posts every 9 weeks. That’s over 500 posts a year. (I got tired just writing that.)

In general, Gini writes 6.33 of those 11 posts, and 4.66 are written by others. However, the fact that nearly half the content is produced by others is not a magic bullet. Managing guest posters can be as resource consuming as producing content, if not more so.

Also, the team at Spin Sucks facilitates this volume by covering many topics outside of the PR field, and they manage to do so without losing their PR base and without sacrificing quality.

And it is that last phrase, “without sacrificing quality,” that rings loudest. To me, the most important part of increasing posting frequency is understanding that additional content must create additional value.

To that end, I think any single author blog looking to increase its content production should answer 3 crucial questions: Read More

Preparing for the Digital World | Globe with Numbers

Monthly Mash: Death of Newsweek & Preparing for Digital Change

Welcome to the Monthly Mash, a mashup of tools, tales and tips on customer service and the customer experience from around the blogosphere.

Volume 12: October 2012

Customer Experience Resource: The Digital World

I can hear you now: So Adam, you are supposed be providing us with useful tools and resources to help us better our customer service. This month you give us “the world.” Seriously, were you just too tired to write something useful?

Yes, I freely admit, the Digital World is a bit broad to be a “resource,” but considering the news this past month about Newsweek, I thought it was a good time to speak about the 50,000 foot view of the changing digital landscape that is affecting all businesses, regardless of industry.

In case you missed the news, starting in 2013, Newsweek, an American print icon, will cease to produce the paper version of its magazine. Newsweek is moving to a purely digital, paid subscription model. Only time will tell if their brand and partnership with the Daily Beast will allow this model to be profitable.

Preparing for the Digital World | Globe with NumbersOf course, print publications have been bleeding readers for a decade or more now, and all print publications have undergone massive changes in attempting to adapt to the changing media landscape.

Many have died, many have mutated to shells of their former selves, and many have tried to slowly embrace a digital/hybrid model, a model that will no doubt end as the WWII generation passes and the Baby Boom generation slips into decrepitude.

But the changes are not just for publications, they are for everyone. How you interact with your customers, how your customers view you and talk about you — all of these dynamics are being shaped by the rapidly shifting digital landscape.

Business is changing and, with it, customer service.

You see, I can recommend all of the books, software, and training programs that I want, but unless I work with you directly, I will never know exactly what your business needs, now or in the future. Predicting the future with accuracy is an impossible endeavor. However, failure to try is even worse.

To that end, I will leave you with a few questions: Read More

If I Lose A Customer | Bottle In Desert

If I Lose a Customer…

…I have failed.

  • If I Lose A Customer | Bottle In DesertFailed to provide enough value.
  • Failed to listen closely enough.
  • Failed to communicate effectively enough.

Not every customer lost is a failure. People move out of the market, people lose the ability to pay, and people’s needs change.

Yet, if I look at my lost customers, the great majority represent a failure on some level. Read More

The Customer Conversation Logo

Monthly Mash: Customer Experience Tools and The Customer Conversation

Welcome to the Monthly Mash, a mashup of tools, tales and tips on customer service and the customer experience from around the blogosphere.

Volume 10: August 2012

Customer Experience Resource: The Customer Conversation

This month’s customer experience resource comes from none other than — well, us. The Customer Conversation is our newly-branded and formatted eNewsletter.

Our traffic here at Customers That Stick has shot up to new levels in the past few months — August traffic being almost triple that of June. And as the traffic has grown, so have the subscribers to our mailing list.

So, we have begun focusing more time and energy on creating quality content for our eNewsletter, and The Customer Conversation has been the outgrowth of that focus.

The Customer Conversation Logo

The Customer Conversation features a variety of exclusive content, with more being added each month. In addition to our new Monday Motivation series, we are also launching our full new eBook on September 24 entitled 7 Secret Customer Service Techniques Every Expert Knows! If you want a preview of the content, check out this post about secret customer service technique #6.

If you are interested in The Customer Conversation and our new eBook, please sign up via the form below. Of course, our list is NO SPAM. We will not sell or give out your information.

The Month in Customer Service Blogging

A collection of the best posts about customer service and the customer experience I read this past month. Read More

Are You Making Brand Deposits | Starbucks Cup of Coffee

Are You Making Brand Deposits?

The post below is partially excerpted from our upcoming eBook 7 Secret Customer Service Techniques Every Expert Knows! Learn more about our new eBook at the bottom of this post.

One of my favorite concepts is the idea of brand deposits, more commonly referred to as brand equity. Brand deposits is a phrase from Steve Jobs. Here is an explanation from the book Insanely Simple: The Obsession That Drives Apple’s Success.

Are You Making Brand Deposits | Starbucks Cup of Coffee“He [Jobs] believed that a company’s brand works like a bank account. When the company does good things, such as launch a hit product or a great campaign, it makes deposits in the brand bank. When a company experiences setbacks, like an embarrassing mouse or an overpriced computer, it’s making a withdrawal. When there’s a healthy balance in the brand bank, customers are more willing to ride out the tough times. With a low balance, they might be more tempted to cut and run.” Cult of Mac

I was thinking about brand deposits the other day after having a poor experience at Starbucks. Now, I generally don’t call out specific companies on this blog, but in this case, my overall point is positive.

Read More