While an increasing number of businesses talk about enhancing customer loyalty and boosting retention, a few may realize the potential of hosting and running customer communities in achieving both the goals successfully. Pretty confident that community is the buzzword for marketers at the moment but for those who are quite nascent in the concept, it is quite amusing to learn the gains of what a customer community has to offer !!
Online customer communities have been co-existing with business in resembling forms like chats bots, social media campaigns, loyalty rewards, and membership systems, etc. However, with evolving times these have shaped into closed groups of customers interacting with the brand and the fellow customers based on mutual interests and curiosities. These community groups have developed out of the need of today’s customers to interact, socialize, and to feel belongingness. One would realize how well-known brands have capitalized on the idea of community development added tremendously to their customer experience and enabled them to build an army of satisfied customers they have been longing for.
Let us understand how has community building and development been working for these brands in raising a loyal army of customers:
Constant Engagement: Community platforms are interestingly engaging and are developed for the purpose of the community members to engage and exchange conversations on their mutual interest areas. Interest-based conversations like these enable the members to stick longer to a brand since these add to their personal delights. Also, in the long run, it stimulates a sense of belongingness and faith in the customer, which keeps his/her bond tight.
Collaborations and friendships: Community engagement has begun creating long-lasting relationships for community members. These could be business relationships like collaborations or personal ones like finding a friend who relates to you like no one else. People value relationships and businesses playing a platform in creating relationships for people definitely hold an important space in their hearts.
Community Member Benefits: Any community member for a business is considerably important and hence they are valued at a premium with special community offers and rewards. You might have heard your friend who is a part of a brand community getting access to newer launches before other potential buyers. The equation works like “Businesses Value their community folks and community folks value business”.
Adding value to the community members: A community is not merely a platform for members to engage but also a way of imparting value to the knowledge, skills interest, etc of the members. Community leads are explorative & keen on identifying initiatives & ideas which would contribute to the development of a community member and their aspirations. Hence no doubt why wouldn’t people want to associate with such brands & their communities.
People value experience: You would realize it is not only the utility that solves a customer’s needs in present. It is a unique experience that lures customers to try a brand out and keeps them with it in the long run. All though you might be offering an amazing product or service in the most innovative way possible, the element that a community adds to the customer experience will always be an edge. Remember once an Apple user, always an apple user spills the secret wide open.
Creating self belongingness: People stay with a brand because they feel a sense of belongingness associating with it. They love their products & relate to the culture & the aura of the brand. Building a community allows brands to make their customers feel their thoughts, vision & culture more closely & hence customers are able to develop a sense of association with a brand. Thus, ensuring the brand-customer relationship is strong & long-lasting.
It is right to feel that community is the elixir a lot us have been looking for to build the A connection with our beloved customers. Along with adding a competitive edge to the business, it keeps the customers jolly and connected and as a business, we all want that. Thus, it feels safe to say it is a good time to begin the community you have been brainstorming about and our expertise at Cohora can make the ride smooth!