Although it’s common for business owners and consumers alike to view the impending holiday season with a fair amount of dread, you’re much more likely to get through the busy shopping season successfully if you view it as an opportunity to build customer loyalty and increase your number of repeat customers. Consumers notice—and frequently spread the word about—stellar service, especially during the holiday season, so take advantage of this opportunity and show your clients that you’re willing to go the extra mile to earn their loyalty.
Turn Seasonal Challenges into Opportunities
- Thank your repeat customers for their business. The holidays are a time for gift-giving, and for the smart business owner, it’s a time to thank your loyal customers for continually bringing their business to you throughout the year. There are an infinite number of ways to approach the thank-you gift: you can send gift cards for the goods or services that your business provides, you can send a box of Christmas goodies, or you can choose to send promotional items with your business’ logo on them, to name a few. Be creative! Sending unique gifts that your clients will actually use is sure to create a lasting impression.
- Offer complimentary services. Harried holiday shoppers appreciate any help that they can get during this busy season, and offering complimentary gift wrapping or shipping is a gesture that they’re sure to remember. Another good way to help them remember your business could be to use custom packaging with your wrapping or shipping that has your company logo on it.
- Host a holiday open house. Everyone enjoys a good holiday party, and the last few months of the year are a perfect time to invite existing and potential customers to your site (or an off-site location, if you need more space) to enjoy some food and refreshments. An open house can serve as a thank-you to existing customers for their loyalty and as a way to gain new customers and introduce them to your brand. You can encourage your guests who are already loyal customers to bring a friend they feel would benefit from the goods and services you provide.
Don’t Forget the Social Media!
Be sure to take pictures at the event and publish them on your company’s social media page(s). Most people love to see photos of themselves, and interacting with them on a more “human” level can only serve to strengthen your relationship. Additionally, a holiday open house is the perfect opportunity to keep your customers informed of any changes or new products coming up in the New Year; if at all possible, use this time to unveil new gadgets, introduce new staff, or provide complimentary new services coming to your company. All good business owners know that customer appreciation should take place year-round, but the holiday season is a perfect time to thank your existing customers for their loyalty over the past year and to introduce new clients to the valuable goods and services that you provide. The more personal the gesture, the more likely you are to earn more business and gain valuable customers for life.