Home General The Seven Rungs on the Ladder of Customer Loyalty

The Seven Rungs on the Ladder of Customer Loyalty

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Creating customer loyalty isn’t a trade secret. It’s not magic, it’s not something only a few special people understand. It’s also not something that can be done overnight.

There are seven rungs on the ladder of customer loyalty and two aspects to increase the value of your marketing. This, in turn, creates profits in your business. The two sides of marketing: acquisition cost and lifetime value.

The goal of marketing in the business should reduce the Acquisition Cost and increase the Lifetime Value. But for now, let’s focus on how to develop the lifetime value of your customers. 

Based on the knowledge that it is six times more expensive to acquire a new customer than to sell more products and services to your current customer base, let’s discuss the system outlined in “Instant Repeat Business,” designed to increase lifetime value by using the Ladder of Loyalty:  

·        Raving Fan

·        Advocate

·        Member

·        Customer

·        Shopper

·        Prospect

·        Suspect

The concept is to categorize each and every name in your prospect and customer database into levels according to their loyalty to your business.

You begin with SUSPECTS, which are businesses that fit into what you have defined as your target market. Any name that you obtain through marketing efforts which fits your criteria enters the Ladder of Loyalty at the SUSPECT level.

Once the SUSPECT becomes interested in your product or service and makes an inquiry, you would move the business up to the PROSPECT level.

Next, a SHOPPER would be a business that buys once from you but has not yet determined that you are a vendor he or she wants to do business with again.

If the business buys more than once, then the SHOPPER becomes a CUSTOMER.

Once the CUSTOMER becomes a consistent buyer of your products and services, you may begin offering incentives and privileges to them so that they become MEMBERS, and no longer look elsewhere for competitive products or services.

MEMBERS do business with you because of the relationship and trust that you have developed.

An ADVOCATE is where your MEMBERS begin selling for you through testimonials and referrals.

An ADVOCATE becomes a RAVING FAN when he/she cannot stop selling for you. Anytime a RAVING FAN is out in the community they are promoting you to everyone about how wonderful you are.

Now, here are some important questions: How many RAVING FANS do you have in your customer base? What would happen to your business if you moved everyone in your database up one level?

Massive profits do not occur by bringing more SUSPECTS or PROSPECTS into your database, but rather moving MEMBERS to ADVOCATES and then to RAVING FANS.

Massive profits occur at the RAVING FAN level. As an assignment, go into your prospect and customer database and determine how many businesses you have at each level. You will create a world of opportunity once you begin to implement strategies for each level on the Ladder of Loyalty.



ActionCOACH, the world’s largest business coaching firm, was established and founded in Brisbane, Australia by Brad Sugars in 1993 when the concept of business coaching was still in its infancy. Since franchising the company in 1997, ActionCOACH has grown to more than 1000 business coaching franchises operating in more than 60 countries. ActionCOACH specializes in coaching small to medium sized businesses as well as executive teams and group coaching. ActionCOACH maintains its growth and strategic alliances by continual development of cutting-edge innovative technology, proven business processes and systems to add value, satisfaction and additional income streams for its franchisees.