It’s All About the Customer Experience
All businesses these days are trying to figure out how to not only reach new customers, but also how to get them to stick around for a long time. Here are a few insights that may help you do that better:
1. Get to Know Your Customers
The most successful outreach campaigns are centered around how well marketers know their ideal buyers and their existing customers, and 68% of marketing leaders say that their companies are increasingly competing on the basis of customer experience. Knowing your customers and customizing those experiences can’t be a guessing game or simply discovered through a Google search. It is helpful to periodically interview existing clients who are a good fit with your company and discover the factors they consider most important when choosing to continue working with you. Then, focus your efforts primarily on those initiatives in order to further cement existing client relationships and attract new ones.
But don’t stop there. Dig deeper to also get to know the ultimate end users of your product or service. How do your customers serve their customers’ needs? What motivates the end user to purchase? Then you can work backward from there to provide the highest possible value to your clients/customers and truly assist them with their own sales goals.
2. Personalize the Customer Experience
People are being flooded with thousands of marketing messages every day. Standing out in a sea of communication requires capturing your customers’ and prospects’ attention, and a great way to do that is to truly personalize those customer messages and experiences. Generic one-size-fits-all marketing just doesn’t work anymore, and 65% of business buyers say they’re likely to switch vendors if a company doesn’t personalize communication specifically to their company. Contextualize your communications to assure customers that you’re laser-focused on them and their ultimate success, positioning your company as a value-added partner who really understands this instead of just a vendor.
3. Focus on the Customer Journey
No matter how long a customer or client has been engaging with you – whether that be a week or decades – you need to continue to treat them as though you’re still trying to win their business. It’s important to effectively understand and manage the different phases of your customers’ journeys to grow their businesses. You’ll need to continually look at how your buyers’ habits have changed in recent years, especially since businesses say that, on average, 34% of their marketing budgets are spent on channels they didn’t even know existed five years ago! Study trends in their industries and bring them new solutions and strategies which are focused on their current needs and challenges.
4. Educate Them
Withstand the temptation to make your products or solutions the main topic of conversation. Blogs and other marketing content that simply focus on you and your product or service can be a big turnoff for potential customers. If all your content does is try to sell, your customer engagement will be disappointing at best.
Instead, develop a content strategy that truly educates customers and prospects on topics relevant to their industries and brings value to the reader or viewer. It needs to be interesting, engaging and empower them to make better decisions . . . and not be all about you!
5. Celebrate Your Customers
When was the last time you took the time to send an email or call your valued customer just to say, “Thank you!” Most customers are likely to stay engaged with businesses that appreciate them and communicate beyond just selling to them. Treat them to lunch, invite them to join you at an event they’d enjoy, send them birthday cards, celebrate their successes. It matters!
6. Increase Brand Advocacy
Current customers are your simplest and most cost-effective way to increase your brand awareness. Foster the kinds of relationships that encourage your customers to not only love you, but also to share with others why they do. True brand advocates can frequently be better marketing assets for your company than actual sales associates because it is not their job to sell you! They bring an objective, third-party credibility to your outreach efforts that can be very powerful. Effective marketers know how to leverage these relationships in ways that extend their marketing reach, such as:
- Testimonials and quotes for your website and proposals
- Case studies
- Social media engagement
- Co-marketing activities in which you and your customers can promote each other
In summary, help your customers and clients in their customer journeys by providing them with examples of what works best and why. Walk in their shoes and continually provide them with relevant research and smart strategies crafted just for them.