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Want More Bang For Your Marketing Buck? Look to Loyalty.

The economy is tough. Budgets are tight. And how many of us are still expected to show significant results with less dollars? It’s a story being repeated across marketing departments everywhere. So, how do you do more with less? Start with your loyalty program.

It costs far more to acquire a new customer than it does to keep and grow one that already thinks well of you. This is where you’re most likely to succeed. Think of it as picking the low-hanging fruit. Here are a few ideas on how to stretch your marketing dollars and continue to grow your customer relationships at the same time.

Tell Them Something Newsworthy – Content is king these days and your best customers just assume that you will tell them the inside scoop, but all too often it doesn’t happen. Send out an email about your newest product line. Interview one of your new product development people and post it to your website. Show off some of your “little knowns”, like extra services (personal shoppers, gift wrap, credit card payment at the register).

Make an Event – Host a sweepstakes or a contest that encourages your customers to engage in your brand, visit your store or comment on your Facebook page. Take something that is happening every day and build an event around it — always get new product shipments on Thursdays? Invite best customers into the store for a special “Sneak Peak Happy Hour” from 4-6pm.

Connect With a Cause – There are plenty of marketing initiatives on your wish list, and if it’s been difficult finding the dollars to commit to cause marketing, then try building it in as a component to your overall loyalty strategy. Your best customer base is a good place to show your commitment to a cause, plus they are more likely to participate and make your efforts a success so you can build on that momentum.