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Brand Purpose Brand Strategy Ecommerce

How to use nostalgia and connection to drive customer loyalty

By Sam Evans, Strategy Director



The Drum Network article

This content is produced by The Drum Network, a paid-for membership club for CEOs and their agencies who want to share their expertise and grow their business.

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March 23, 2023 | 6 min read

Sam Evans of Rawnet puts the loyalty versus retention debate to bed and advises how to keep customers coming back with nostalgia and connection.

Man waving from food van

Nostalgia is a winning marketing tactic for 43% of top-performing companies across the world / JuniperPhoton

The ongoing loyalty versus retention debate is a hot topic in our industry. Customer loyalty gauges a customer’s inclination toward selecting a particular brand while purchasing, indicating a reluctance to switch to competitors, while retention measures whether an existing customer is likely to continue to do business with a brand. In fact, existing customers are 50% more likely to try new products and spend 31% more than new customers.

In times of economic stress, consumer retention becomes crucial as customers become more mindful of their spending habits. Companies must introduce loyalty programs to address this as customers seek the best deals and ultimately build emotional connections with their preferred brands over time.

In short, customer loyalty and retention are interrelated and vital components for future business success.

Retaining customers against all odds

In today’s challenging economic climate, customers are increasingly focussed on saving money, meaning brands must work harder to get people to spend with them. One way brands can do this is by analyzing customer data to determine which products or topics are the most popular and tailor their marketing efforts accordingly.

Retaining existing customers can increase profitability by 25% to 95%. A high customer retention rate indicates that your customers trust your products and company, making them more likely to purchase from you (and recommend you to others). Retaining existing customers is also far more cost-effective than finding new ones.

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Nostalgia-fueled marketing

Savvy brands will understand the potential nostalgia has to supercharge campaigns. By incorporating retro or vintage fonts, tapping into recycling trends, and evoking feelings of nostalgia, brands can tap into emotions with their customers (and ultimately drive sales).

Building a strong connection with customers based on trust and communication can foster a sense of security and loyalty toward a brand, and drive repeat purchases.

It’s known that marketers who stay abreast of current trends can incorporate nostalgia into their campaigns to appeal to customers of all ages, boosting customer satisfaction. In fact, 43% of the top-performing companies in the world use nostalgia marketing in their strategies.

Building connection

To build strong relationships with their customers, brands must focus on principles that apply to any healthy relationship: listening to their needs, building connections, showing shared values, and being empathetic, trustworthy and transparent.

Personalization isn’t new. Push notifications, emails, and tailored suggestions are all strategies to keep customers engaged and feeling included. Tailored emails, discounts and rewards can make customers feel gifted and valued, and help customer relationships blossom.

You can also leverage market trends by offering bundle deals for Black Friday or honoring spokespeople on marked days like International Women’s Day to demonstrate advocacy and inclusivity (authentically, of course).

Customers come first

Focussing on retaining existing customers is often more advantageous than trying to acquire new ones. New customers may only make a single purchase and are not guaranteed to remain loyal to the brand.

Several methods for cultivating customer loyalty and retention include staying abreast of ongoing trends and using marketing techniques that cater to the audience's needs. By implementing these strategies, retaining customers becomes more manageable. The key is for brands to listen to their consumers and take whatever actions are necessary to maintain high satisfaction levels.

Brand Purpose Brand Strategy Ecommerce

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Rawnet is a digital agency that defines, designs, delivers and drives strategic products and services that create a long-term positive impact.

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