Three Steps to Growing a Loyal Customer Base with Lantern

create loyalty

Lantern is a simple, but amazing app. It offers the ability to provide loyalty discounts and deals to your current customers, attract new ones to your door and provides a way for you to interact with all of them on the most popular choice for communication today, their smartphone.

That alone is worth the small price of admission to this incredible tool, but we would like to take it one step further, well … three actually, and give you the three best ways to make sure the Lantern Loyalty Program is a success for your business and ensure your customers are achieving the greatest benefit. We will also share some incredible facts about loyalty programs with you, but first, the three steps.

1 Incentivize Employees

This one may seem obvious, but hear us out. Incentive. We are not talking about an incentive for your customers here … we mean incentivize your staff. That’s right, your servers, your clerks, your cashiers and managers. Getting them to offer and remind customers to download the free Lantern app is your first and most important step in achieving success with your Lantern Loyalty Program. Incentives could be in the form of movie tickets, dinner for two, passes to an attraction or whatever works for your kind of employees. Whatever you decide, some sort of monthly prize for signing up members to your Lantern Loyalty Program is key.

As an employer, it is also important on a daily basis, to recognize those employees you overhear promoting your Lantern Loyalty Program. They are providing one of the best ways to improve your bottom line and they should receive encouragement and thanks from you. As a side benefit, this will also foster happy employees and goes a long way toward improving the overall performance of that particular employee.

2 Create Great Offers

This one is for the customer. A Valuable Offer. What is the value of a customer for life? We call this lifetime ROI or return on investment. Think about this: If a customer returns to your business over the course of their lifetime, hundreds of times and spends $30, $50 or $100 each visit, is it worth spending a few dollars to earn that customer? Of course it is.

So think of that when putting together your Lantern offer. First, make it worth their while. They are giving you a valuable piece of real estate on their smartphone, you need to give them something of true perceived value in return. We recommend no less than a 33% discount off your goods or services, but most business owners will find that a 50% discount or greater works the best for attracting new members to your loyalty program. Secondly, do not make it hard for them to redeem or figure out … Just say $10 off instead of buy-one-get-one, which could amount to the same thing, but has a lower perceived value because you are making them do something to earn it. The cost of offering that discount will be far outweighed by the lifetime ROI that new customer will bring you.

Here’s the simple math to figure out a good LOYALTY offer.  Your loyalty offer should be half off your average check amount, and you should offer it after 5 visits.  So if your average check is $20, your loyalty offer should be at least $10 off after 5 visits.  This works out to a 10% overall discount, but it seems much more exciting to the customer because they get a big reward at the end vs. a small, boring discount each time.

NEW CUSTOMER or TIMED offers should be half off your average check amount as well.  This will entice customers to come try out your business for the first time or to act immediately, in the case of a timed offer.

3 Tell Every Customer

Make you program “sticky”. Tell your current customers. You have a base of customers now and they may frequent your business from time to time, but studies show that customers who belong to a tangible loyalty program not only return more often, but spend more when they do. And for restaurant servers … loyalty program members tip better too. Tell your staff at the beginning of each shift to remember to mention and promote your Lantern Loyalty Program to customers. It will be good for them and great for your business. Offering a 10% Loyalty Rewards program to loyalty members is customary and sufficient, so for every $100 they spend they earn a value in cash back or goods that equals $10. This is a small price to pay for the many thousands of dollars that customer will spend over their lifetime. You can then also communicate sales, dinners or events to your loyal customers through the app. It seems hard to believe that this is all available to you for just $49/month, but that is how we like to keep things at Lantern. Simple.

The Facts

Here are the facts we promised:

    1. Businesses that participate in an active loyalty program like Lantern and engage with their customers through it, see 88% more profit than those that do not.

    2. Customers that belong to a business’s loyalty program spend more with that business than at others.

    3. Loyalty program members tip better than non members.

Just fifty new customers patronizing your business just once a month and spending $100 will generate over $50,000 a year after all discounts given and and fees paid! The math is simple, the program is simple. It’s easy for your customers to sign up. You simply need your staff to offer and promote it at every opportunity, in order to start reaping the rewards of providing a Lantern Loyalty Program to your customers. It is as simple as 1, 2, 3.

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