Loyal customers vs. new customers: A false dilemma

The expert Egber Hernandez Diaz points out the reasons why any policy, process or activity of a gaming operator must be oriented to build lasting relationships with current customers, which generates trust, more bets and recommendations to new players.

By Egber Hernandez Diaz, independent Specialist in Marketing and Sales*

Email: egber.hernandez@gmail.com
Website: https://www.linkedin.com/in/egberhernandez

Nowadays, in the marketing team of a company, a key (and false) dilemma is posed when defining the budget: should we invest in attracting new customers or maintaining the loyal base of current ones? Although both aspects are equally relevant for a firm, according to its maturity in the industry and positioning in the market, in the long term, a successful and proven action will be to generate lasting relationships with current clients. This will result in reaching higher levels of repurchase and recommendation. In terms of numbers, in an adjusted economy, it is well known that it’s much more expensive to attract a new customer than to retain and develop an existing one. By the way, within a company, the financial area sometimes questions the results of loyalty investments in the short term, ROI and incremental sales. However, it should be noted that building a customer’s loyalty is a constant marathon and not a sprint race. Thus, the growth strategy of the companies must be based on the construction of customer loyalty because this, in some cases, can represent 80 percent of revenues.

WHY TO BUILD CUSTOMER LOYALTY?
If we take as an example a clear leader in development of loyalty such as Disney and, specifically, its division of Amusement Parks and Hotels, we can observe a constant: the systematic commitment to increase the customer experience without reducing its benefits, which leads in the long term for them to spend more and in a better way. In fact, the main goal of Disney employees is ‘to have the happiest customers in the world.’

In the gaming floors, the theme of building loyalty is fundamental. Even so, there are still executives who, in order to reduce expenses, ask questions such as the following: “If I cut the gifts and benefits that I give daily/weekly/monthly to the top clients of my casino, will they return? Will they go with the competition because they are going to give them more prizes and bonuses? Will they visit me again or buy my product/service? Will the budget dedicated to loyalty enormously rise for offering more advantages to loyal customers? Will the staff of employees increase because I better serve my clients? According to different studies, it is estimated that, by 2025, those companies that are committed to strengthening customer loyalty will grow their income by 20 to 30 percent.

The key to generating a significant differentiation from our competitors is to move away from the stereotypes of the industry in order to establish systematic service processes that produce rewarding experiences. The central point is to enhance the emotional + rational connection in the clients who attend a gaming floor, while maintaining internally and in an integral way those policies, processes and structures that will serve to achieve the objectives previously set. In addition, we must not forget that loyalty programs are evolutionary and have influence in the entire organization. They must be constantly evaluated and monitored to help obtain the intended results. The main challenge of operators is having very fluid mechanisms of loyalty programs, strengthening them and developing systematic marketing and commercial strategies that will lead more and more players to be part of those programs, stimulating the repurchase and recommendation to other new punters. In short, successful loyalty also drives the introduction of new customers in the casinos.

——————————————

*For over 19 years, Egber Hernandez Diaz has been applying his knowledge and skills in marketing, sales and customer service in important gaming companies, such as the Mexican operator Logrand Entertainment Group, and in respected companies of other industries. He masters issues such as online & offline marketing and market research; he has led projects of his specialty under the PMI methodology, and has launched products with excellent results locally and internationally.

He has a degree in Marketing from the Instituto Tecnologico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey, Mexico, with a specialization in Digital Marketing from the Digital Marketing Institute. Hernandez Diaz also has MBA studies and a wide range of certifications in topics such as coaching, SEO, NLP, leadership and strategies in social networks, among others.