It is evident to most that in order to enjoy recurring sales and keep your customers coming back for more, you need to properly engage them. It also goes without saying that retaining existing customers is far more cost-effective, and generally a lot easier to do, when compared to trying to acquire new ones. Furthermore, many marketing experts believe that customer relationship management is the key to keeping existing clients engaged. However, the relationship component should actually begin when the initial contact with the client takes place; when they are still just a prospective client.
Having a 24/7 proactive approach to your marketing strategy where your digital channels have communications that are integrated will allow your brand to optimally foster relationships with its client base. Here, we will break down what customer lifecycle marketing is and how you can leverage it to retain your customers for life.
Creating a Proper Contact Strategy
You should begin by launching an email marketing campaign that is fully automated. Some of the messages you can convey include nurture and welcome messages, or you can try and win-back clients who have left. You can also add ad targeting displays to your strategy, such as Google Ads, and incorporate it into your network re-marketing initiatives.
Moreover, you should include personalization that is on-site. For instance, you can recommend some custom tailored content, offers, or perhaps a new innovative product to maximize conversions. Retargeting on social media should also be a part of your contact strategy; so use all the social platforms that you can (i.e., LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Youtube, Pinterest).
The clout of conventional channels should also never be underestimated. As such, you can contact prospects via phone or by direct mail to expand your contact methods.
Customer Lifecycle Marketing
Customer lifecycle marketing refers to the newfound interest of companies in customer engagement and customer prospecting, as well as customer retention and conversion. In other words, the marketer will focus keenly on their contact strategy, and integrate all of the marketing communication catalysts at their disposal to support their target customers and prospects. Marketing techniques such as remarketing and personalized messaging — that are engaging and persuasive — are implemented to help guide their clients and prospective clients on their unique road to purchase.
The Origin of Lifecycle Marketing
Customer lifecycle marketing was originally coined by the company Infusionsoft — a company that specializes in customer relationship management. It was initially a term devised to help better explain their services. Interestingly, the concept was meant to help marketing teams create successful marketing strategies that would help them deliver exceptional experiences, increase sales, and entice clients.
The lifecycle component of customer lifecycle marketing goes beyond the rather rudimentary phase of simply trying to convert each contact. Instead, it focuses on a long-term focus on not just acquiring customers, but retaining them for an extended period of time.
The Five Stages of Customer Lifecycle Marketing
If we were to break down customer lifecycle marketing into 5 stages or phases it would begin with the acquisition phase. The next stage would focus on prospective clients, while the third would be focused on actually converting prospects into paying customers. Next, we move to retain them, since customer lifecycle marketing focuses on long-term relationships with clients instead of one-off sales. The final stage is the win-back stage, where a win-back program is launched in order to bring back customers who have stopped purchasing your products or using your services.
How Different Channels can Be Used Across Multiple Client Stages
Let us begin by focusing on integrated communications mediums in order to generate awareness. Examples may include PR, SEO, TV, print ads, and social media. Decision content follows, which may include brochures, mobile applications, and websites with responsive web design. Follow-up remarketing comes next, which will likely include display retargeting, email, SMS, and even phone calls. Finally, there are sales channels, which may include phone, mobile and desktop applications and websites but in-store channels as well.
Step one will be implemented in order to stimulate and inspire the buyer by using the aforementioned integrated communication mediums. Step two will focus on helping foster a brand preference in the buyer by focusing on the “look” stage of the buyer’s path to purchase. Here, interactive brochures, multiple app options, and a highly responsive website will be put into action.
Step three will focus on persuading the customer by reminding and explaining the exciting and useful benefits and features of their products. To do so, they will try and persuade the buyer using automated retargeting, SMS, emails, and automated calling and chatting. Interestingly, stage 4 (sales channels) will also be a part of the third step in the buyer’s journey, and traditional in-store and phone channels, as well as site personalization, will be launched to do so.
The fourth step will focus on the actual purchase of the product or service in question. Here, the marketing team will facilitate the purchase of the product or service using phone, online, or in-store ordering or purchasing.
Hence, customer lifecycle marketing is not a sprint but a marathon, that involves multiple steps along the way. Marketers need to understand the client’s journey to purchase in an integrated fashion, from the initial contact step to the customer relationship management step. In other words, it is recommended that you not focus on separate campaigns but instead focus on implementing an always-on marketing strategy that assesses the client’s entire journey over multiple platforms and mediums.
Now you know what customer lifecycle marketing entails and how it can greatly benefit your enterprise, by not only fostering a great brand reputation but also by expanding your customer base; all while keeping existing clients happy and engaged with your corporate messaging.
If you would like to learn more about customer lifecycle marketing contact TechWyse, one of the largest internet marketing agencies in Canada, here.