For many tobacco businesses, nothing is more valuable than a loyal customer. Loyal customers can act as ambassadors for your brand, helping to bring their own network of friends and acquaintances to your products. They expose their family to their preferred brand, creating generations of loyalty and patronage. While getting a customer to make more than one purchase is great, converting a returning customer into a loyal one is hard work.
Here are several ways your tobacco business can not only retain your customer base but earn you customer’s loyalty at the same time.
1. Reward Loyalty
Reward your best customers with incentives. While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) prohibits free samples, some incentive programs are allowed, especially those where a transaction is involved. Drew Estate, for example, has created a program called Drew Diplomat that rewards both retailers and consumers. The more Drew Estate products a consumer purchases, the bigger chance he or she has in earning personalized and one-of-a-kind swag created by Drew Estate’s graffiti artists working at Subculture Studios.
“Retail shop owners sometimes forget to not just communicate out transactional content. Yes, its important to communicate out when your next event is, or when you are running a great deal, but I like to see it when a retailer provides transformational content: content that rewards the consumer for patronizing their business,” explains Sam Morales, Director of Marketing at Drew Estate.
2. Get Their Email Address
Almost everyone has an email address and reaching out to your customers about new products, events or post-purchase follow ups is simple with an email. Email marketing should be part of every tobacco business’ marketing efforts. Go a step further and use email to create a sense of community with your customers.
Djarum, an Indonesian clove cigarette brand, created an entire year-long email campaign to engage with its customers around special occasions and activities–birthdays, celebrations, relaxing moments, nightlife, food and drink pairings. These emails serve as a reminder of Djarum’s product lineup with tips for consumers on how Djarum fits into their lifestyle.
3. Don’t Ignore Your Existing Customers
For many businesses, the hustle is often about gaining new customers and making more profits, leading to the unintended neglect of your existing customers. Whether its with a loyalty program or highlighting your customers through social media, remember that you must be enthusiastic and appreciative of your customers consistently over time, not just when you’ve first acquired them.