B

rand loyalty is a crucial goal of any retailer. There’s a simple formula to brand loyalty:

  1. Shoppers become new customers
  2. New customers become repeat customers
  3. Repeat customers become brand evangelists.

This doesn't happen overnight – building these types of customer relationships could take years of time and effort. While it still takes time and effort, clienteling can build faster and stronger brand relationships than typical customer service.

What is Clienteling?

In short, clienteling is using information to provide personalized customer experiences.

Clienteling provides customer service by focusing on establishing many long-term personal relationships. It can take many forms, from handwritten notes, spreadsheets or custom CRM software, but there’s a system to collect, track, and use customer data to build relationships and sell more personally.

But what about clienteling makes it so useful? Why does a clienteling system build faster brand loyalty? Why can’t associates practice clienteling by themselves?

Clienteling Turns Shoppers into Customers

In today’s retail environment, simply having contact with customers is not enough. Almost 80% of consumers expect brands to demonstrate they care on a regular basis. To express that they understand and listen, retailers have to personalize their customer touchpoints. Nobody want to be one of thousands receiving the same generic email.

It seems unsurprising then that customer data-driven clienteling has become the next big thing in retail strategy. Emails might bring shoppers in the door, but real relationships drive more sales.

Clienteling Turns Customers into Return Customers

There’s nothing customers hate more than getting generic service. Nearly half of consumers say they will abandon brands that consistently provide impersonal or poor service.

A brand can log dozens of touchpoints with a customer. But if those touchpoints aren’t personalized, they can have a neutral, if not negative effect on customers’ relationship to the brand.  A customer who continuously receives lackluster emails or poorly targeted ads is likely to lose interest. A customer who is routinely ignored will quickly leave.

Instead, a clienteling system empowers associates to treat every customer like a “regular.” A good clienteling system makes it simple for associates to access information about individual clients. With that information, associates can easily create not only individualized in-store experiences, but also tailored out-of-the-store messages.

Sending a text message about an item going on sale, another recommendation, or a style tip is much more powerful than a generic email about markdowns. These personal messages have a much higher chance of converting customers to purchase again and again.

Clienteling Turns Repeat Customers Into Evangelists

At the end of the day, customers want to feel understood and cared about. By fulfilling their needs, teaching them about products, and creating a culture of trust, your return customers have a high chance of evangelizing for you.

To get a step-by-step idea of how to use clienteling to create customer evangelists, we walk through it step by step in our free e-book. It breaks down the how and why as simple as possible. Building relationships is hard, but data-driven clienteling could be the secret weapon you need to elevate your customer relationships and give your clients the exact experience they are looking for.

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