For a business website, it is important not only to attract customers, but also to retain and subsequent work with them. It is important to make such a project so that people find it useful, interesting and convenient to use the online resource. In this case, they will remember you and come back again. In addition, you need to have two strategies at once: to retain new customers and work with the existing base. These are completely different techniques, so let’s dwell on them in more detail.
Benefits of retaining old customers
The customer base is your huge resource and capital that needs to be used correctly. A loyal customer is ready to make repeat purchases, and no additional advertising funds are required to attract and warm him up. A long-term relationship building strategy is the most profitable method of working. In addition, the right approach allows you to create a group of “brand advocates” who will share their impressions of working with you and disseminate useful information.
To work with the existing base, it is necessary to develop a strategy of periodic contact, which will allow you to remind of yourself. However, you should not make mailings and calls too actively in order to prevent the “burning out” of the base. In terms of marketing touch, the ratio of useful content to salesperson should be 10: 1 or 10: 2. With a high% of advertising messages, such communications will be annoying and have the opposite effect. Interesting for clients will be:
Technologies for working with your equipment.
Carrying out maintenance.
Ways to improve equipment performance.
New ideas for using equipment that will generate new income.
Video, photo materials that demonstrate the issues of repair, maintenance and operation.
Among commercial mailings, messages are relevant for customers in which they will receive benefits and benefits for their business:
Product line update.
Promotions, discounts, sales.
Training events, master classes for staff.
Perhaps you will find unique and useful topics specifically for your production, there is already room for the activity of a group of marketers and advertisers.
The specifics of attracting new customers
Let’s analyze the methods of attracting customers to the site and determine the complexity of this process. We evaluate the effectiveness of marketing activities by quantifiable indicators, so we will work with numbers:
Advertising cost. The cost of attracting 1 new customer is 5-10 times higher than the cost of retaining an existing one. At the same time, advertising costs grow, the cost of a click or view is constantly increasing. Recall that ad bids are determined on the basis of an auction, and if competitors want to rise above you, then they raise bids. And such a struggle is taking place in all types of advertising business, which is very unprofitable for advertisers.
Economic instability and unpredictability. Conversion rates change during a crisis, and even if a marketer provides a flow of visitors to the site, converting them into customers depends on the work of the sales department. In addition, no analytics will be able to accurately predict the number of customers. One can only tentatively estimate this indicator according to statistics. In a period of high market turbulence, customer behavior is not predictable, and we find ourselves in a risk zone.
Value. The new client is not ready to make expensive purchases, since trust has not yet formed and the value of the product has not been conveyed. It is important for an industrial enterprise to provide not only equipment, but also services. The statistics of American researchers give the following figures: customers who have been working with your company for more than 3 years spend 67% more on orders and purchases than new customers.
Customer loyalty. For new customers, it is important to get a closure of their pain, so here you need to attract a lot of resources to analyze and close the customer’s needs. In addition, the first step will require building trust and confidence in the quality of your products. For regular customers, these points are no longer so relevant, because their requests are more understandable, and they can more easily voice new needs to you, since there is trust.
Classification of customer acquisition methods
We distinguish between 3 main methods of working with clients:
Active – through the promotion of a commercial offer, cold calls, mailings, contacts at exhibitions and other events.
Passive – implemented using outdoor advertising, search engine optimization, internet marketing (targeted and contextual advertising).
Combined – they combine the active work of the sales department and marketing tools.
The most effective customer acquisition methods today
The competitive environment requires careful preparation when launching a project. The goal will be to attract the attention of the target audience and consolidate in the market. Only after recruiting a minimum number of clients can you start working on a retention strategy.
Here are the recommended strategy elements:
Distribution of promotional products. Advertising through a promo allows you to form an image of your brand in the minds of consumers, and maintain interest. Most often, purchases are made from those companies whose name has remained in memory. It is important to develop an opportunity for the familiarization of the product / service. If this is a large equipment, it will be useful to conduct excursions to production or training in new technologies. For small items, promotional gifts work well to create your own experience.
Content marketing. Selling through useful information is a convenient and relatively inexpensive way to promote. Blogging, social networks, YouTube channel will significantly increase traffic to the site and “warm up” the audience. Post high-quality content on a regular basis, answer questions, give useful advice – and people will appreciate your company as a reliable partner.
Accuracy and professionalism in advertising. Of course, marketers do ads. But your technologists and designers should take part in the preparation of the advertisement. Or there may be another option, when the professional adaptation of the marketing and sales department begins with a study of the production and technological processes of the enterprise. But in any case, advertising must be truthful and not mislead potential customers.
Favorable offers and promotions. Gifts, discounts, promotions – this system of motivation for consumers should always be kept in stock to promote their goods / services. People are motivated to interact if they are attracted to interesting events with bonuses. For example, invite for discussion, dialogue of those who can be useful in terms of improving the product. Broad masses of consumers willingly take part in lotteries – here the excitement works. Conduct surveys, take reviews from videos and photos.
Conducting live presentations. There are fans of video presentations who are ready to watch them in recording. But lively emotions and drive work better in live presentations and screenings. These can be exhibitions or short demonstrations that grab attention. The presentation should be short and memorable. As an attractive bonus, members can be offered a discount coupon or an instant lottery.
BTL technologies. Most often, paper advertising is used in the area of the action. But if you add value to the advertising medium, then customers will carefully store it for a certain time. For example, you distribute flyers indicating the amount of discount for a product / service to the person who will present it at the point of sale. This flyer for the target audience is the equivalent of money, so it will not be thrown away. What else can be used as such an advertising medium: a business card that gives a discount, a price list indicating the “code word”.
Advertising viral effect. Bright and funny ads make you want to share information. Here the emotions that a person receives play a role. The second option is the provocative theme of a commercial or post. However, in this case, it is necessary to bypass the topics of politics and religion, so as not to cause a wave of indignation. Touch other questions that will be touched on “for a quick”.
Networking. Communication and building business communications helps to expand the audience of clients and works on the basis of trusting relationships. Study the problems of consumers, suggest ways to solve their problems, quickly respond to new requests – be on the wave of your target audience’s interests and give precise answers.
Expertise level. Speeches at industry conferences and seminars, publications in specialized publications (online and offline), blogging (video and text format) will show you as an expert. You can conduct live broadcasts on social networks in the format of an interview or dialogue – this is a very lively version of communication.
Public events. Social engagement may not be superficially profitable, but it will give you the bonus of reaching new audiences. Attend and participate in concerts, bicycle races, fairs – such events attract thousands of people and become a good platform for public relations.
Best customer retention tools
First of all, you need to study and analyze the reasons for leaving customers. This will allow you to cover needs and prevent the loss of active consumers. To do this, use real reviews, get feedback, consider the proposals of competitors and the market situation:
Personalization in communications. Use personal messages in mailing lists, send relevant offers based on real interests, congratulate you on your birthday and other significant events.
Loyalty programs. Develop a similar program with a cumulative effect to motivate repeat purchases. It is useful to have a referral program in which the referrer will receive material rewards for advertising your products.
Client club. Organizing such a community provides added value to clients if you provide specific benefits to club members. This format brings together and unites.
Content marketing. Useful and interesting information increases your brand awareness, talks about the benefits and benefits for customers. It’s important to focus on the client’s needs, not yourself.
Security of transactions. Reliable and straightforward interaction service makes ordering and shopping easier. It is important to correctly organize the first interaction so that the client is comfortable and understandable.
Elements of exclusivity. Individual design, branded packaging – this gives the client a sense of his exclusivity as a consumer.
Don’t annoy customers. Spamming is a sign of intrusiveness. Don’t be overly annoying and active, everything is fine in moderation.
Contests and promotional offers. Make special offers to loyal customers so that they value the benefits of their brand loyalty.
Branding of souvenir and gift products. Make gifts with elements of your brand, celebrate memorable dates of clients and bright events of your cooperation.
Gamification. This method of engaging customers involves performing certain actions (subscribe, review, purchase, order) with real reward for the action. In this case, you can use elements of gaming technologies.
As you can see, it is important to use both methods, which allow you to both attract new customers and work with the old base. But don’t forget that a business needs a sound strategy and a strong sales force to close deals. It takes time and effort to educate and train your team, but the costs will pay off with high conversion rates and profits.