For marketers, the majority of marketing efforts are expended trying to attract new leads and prospects and convert them into customers. But what happens after they become customers?
Some will mumble that it’s no longer their concern, and that the purchase marks the end of the proverbial marketing road. Other than a random upsell promotion here or there, existing customers are often given nary a second thought from the marketing department.
Even with the ease of running campaigns with marketing and CRM automation systems, too many marketers’ strategies begin and end at lead generation. This is surprising, given how much people love to quote the well-known stat that 20 percent of customers generate 80 percent of your revenue. Why not focus our brilliant marketing tactics towards selling more stuff to our already bought-in base?
Tapping into your customer base is an easy way to generate new and recurring revenue, and if you’re ignoring them, you’re just leaving money on the table. So create a communication plan, and look for opportunities to anticipate their needs and connect with them at key times in their customer lifecycle. Here are some ways you can do that.
Find the story in your data
Your customer data is a minefield of valuable information that can help you be a good resource for your customers and possibly drive in new revenue. For example:
- Enlist a churn score. Operationalizing a LACK of interest from customers can be even more valuable than monitoring the interest of prospects. Use this scoring methodology to send timely communication promoting how-to content or other resources that encourage them to begin interacting again. Develop a long-term plan for different levels of score – which correlate to different levels of risk for churn.
- Through scoring or simple usage metrics, identify customers who haven’t logged in lately or engaged with your product or service and have an account rep give them a call.
- If customers are engaging with certain support or instructional content, it may indicate either a lack of intuitiveness in your product or a desire to dig deeper into specific capabilities. Try sending out links to more advanced content or developing training courses or tune-up service specifically about that topic.
- Revisit buyer personas. We got them to buy once, but those same driving factors that made them buy are still important. When do they like to be communicated with? How do they consume content? These elements are still critical to continuing and building a strong and lasting relationship.
Make sure you’re using your marketing automation system’s targeting tools so you can segment your communications for better results. Relevancy and timeliness are key in customer communications, and your data can help with both.
Upsell, cross-sell, smart sell
Remember that 80/20 stat we talked about earlier? Here’s where that really makes an impact. You provide a valuable product or service that people want to experience. And if they are satisfied with their initial purchase and interactions with your company, it’s safe to say they’re favorably predisposed to buy from you again.
Again, mine your data for useful information. Discover what complementary products or services previous likeminded customers purchased. This is the dads buying diapers and beer from convenience store example. Look it up; it’s a thing! Are there any patterns relating to seasonality or timeframe? Once you’ve seen the data, create an upsell and cross-sell strategy that takes those preferences into account. Anticipate your customers’ needs, and they’ll love you for understanding them so well.
Talk directly to your customers
One of the best things about marketing to your existing customers is they already know who you are and what you offer, so you don’t have to spend time doing a whole lot of educating. Even better, they expect to hear from you.
Use your data and your marketing automation’s segmentation capabilities to develop targeted communications that speak directly to your customer segment. Address specific needs or desires to show you’re paying attention. And because you’re not nurturing them, you can be short and sweet with your content—even a bit sales-y, if appropriate. If you haven’t already, develop customer personas to help you be even more effective with your messaging.
Once you drop the idea that marketing is just for lead generation, you’ll uncover a wealth of new and exciting possibilities for boosting your revenue and creating stronger customer loyalty. Just like your traditional marketing plan, all you need is a good strategy, sound data and the ability to deliver the right content at the right time.
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