How do you monetize a loyal customer base?
Well, they're already customers…so they're already monetized, right?
But there's more they can give you.
But what if we told you there are other ways to maximize the profitability of your most loyal and engaged customers?
We warned that loyal customers aren't money trees. At some point they're paying you as much as they care to and anything over that will cause them to split.
So how can loyal customers help you make more money if they're not giving you more money?
Try these three ideas that can have a big return on your bottom line, while also boosting customer engagement.
Three Ways to Indirectly Profit from Your Most Engaged Customers
We harp on this concept all the time, and for good reason. Soliciting feedback from customers is a pain in the rear for most companies, yet it's vital to a refined customer experience. Engaged customers can't wait to tell you how to make your business better.
Sure, sometimes it looks like complaining, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't take it seriously.
Seek feedback on every piece of communication. Open your doors, install chat windows, and ditch the noreply@____.com email addresses.
"Superusers" are people who see themselves as an active part of a company, even though they're just customers. They defend the brand online and in person, and serve as passionate advocates. The more you identify, recognize and reward your most engaged customers, the more likely it is they'll become superusers.
Can you ever outright ask a customer to defend your brand to an angry Facebook mob? No, but prove your value to a customer, and ensure they've active with your online presence, and some of them will pick up the baton.
Wrong: Beloved Customer Bob, do you mind wading into this angry mob and putting these trolls in their place for us?Right: Beloved Customer Bob, please like us on Facebook and be sure you hit that "Follow" button so you see our updates!
In an online exchange of dialog, the third-party observers are as important as the participants. People will see your brand, and your empowered defenders, responding to angry haters.
A responsive brand, with an organic support system behind it, is very attractive to fence sitting consumers.
Try Something New
How much can you know about a new product until it's been through the ringer? Not just in-house testing, but actual, real-life use and abuse?
Your loyalists are dying for the chance to try your new stuff. Pick a select few you trust, and let them have it for free - with the understanding that they'll share their experiences every step of the way.
Like actively soliciting feedback, this is a win-win. You get learnings around your product. Since the beta testers are already loyalists, there's little risk of alienating them if the product isn't quite ready for prime time.
Using Every Part of the Customer
Customers have so much more to offer you than their dollars.
Your loyal customers will be your most profitable, and there are ways you can make extra cold, hard cash from them. But don't lose sight of the alternative, just-as-valuable opportunities they present.
Integrate them into your company. Treat them like business partners or even investors, and you'll see their engagement grow. Shape your company around their needs, and you'll see more and more of them appearing.