Let's start at the very beginning: What even is brand loyalty?
Having thousands of social media followers? No.
Influencers posting your brand? Try again.
When customers continue to purchase your products/services over and over, despite competitors offering something similar? Bingo! Third time's a charm.
Brand loyalty is when your customers associate positive thoughts and feelings with your brand, especially unprompted. Brand loyalty is your community that will support you no matter what. Brand loyalty is what will make your business successful for years to come.
This isn't to say that having thousands of followers or influencers posting your brand isn't a good indication as to the success of your brand, but it's also not a guarantee that your brand will continue to be successful. It's how you get those followers and influencers that will determine your future success.
In today's world, it's easy to go for the quick deal, follow, purchase, or like, but that "success" will only take you so far. If consumers don't feel a sense of connection to your brand, their support will fade just like a bad social media trend. If you spend thousands of dollars buying followers and sending free product to influencers, sure it will look like you're successful, and maybe you'll even see a spike in sales for a while, but when a competitor comes around making a similar product, how are you going to ensure that your customers stay loyal to you?
Here are some tips I recommend:
- Share your story, why you started the company, and what motivates you to keep going... and keep sharing!
- Find creative ways to engage with your customers and make them feel like they're a valued part of your community. Ask for submissions for video content, create giveaways, and attend relevant events to meet your customers in person.
- Be passionate. If you're not invested or passionate about what you're doing and/or selling, it will show in your branding and turn people off.
- Be unapologetically yourself. Be authentic and (a little) vulnerable. I know it's scary to let strangers see who you are unfiltered, but if they feel connected to you, they're more likely to feel connected to your brand and support you with some shopping!
My advice is simple: avoid the pressure of growing too fast and focus on giving your customers the opportunity to get to know your brand. This type of organic growth will be slower and require a lot of patience on your end, but it's so worth it.