Many businesses spend the majority of their money and time on acquiring customers. As consumers, we see this all the time. Deals for new customers are everywhere, whether it’s a supermarket offering money off your first online shop, or a bank offering cashback for switching your current account. But what about those long-standing customers who consistently remain loyal to a brand?
Customer retention is one of the most critical challenges facing businesses today. So it makes good sense to keep your existing customers happy - you want them to continue to choose to do business with you. Studies show that it costs ten times more to attract a new customer than to keep one. And let’s face it, happy customers make great advocates.
The inbound marketing philosophy acknowledges the value of customer retention and advocacy. The four-step process - “attract, convert, close, delight” - works to turn strangers into not only customers but promoters of your business.
The ‘delight’ action, the final step in the process, focuses on turning your customers into promoters who will continue to use your product and service - and sing its praises to others.
But how do you delight them? Well, by continuing to engage with them, continuing to be helpful, and continuing to support them with content that informs and adds value.
In this post, we outline four inbound marketing tactics B2B companies can use to achieve this.
1. Social monitoring
Social monitoring helps you keep track of the social conversations that are relevant to your business. You can pick up on questions or concerns people may have about your products or services including positive and negative feedback, creating opportunities to respond to both.
For instance, if you know customers are struggling with a specific element of your product or service you can create content that helps them better understand it.
Effective social listening isn’t only about monitoring brand and product mentions though. Listen out for what your customers are doing and what’s happening in their industries. Knowing your client’s activities and industry challenges mean you can learn of further opportunities to build upon your relationship, by producing relevant content or reaching out to them directly.
2. Smart CTAs
Every page on your website needs a call-to-action (CTA) to guide visitors to the next step in your conversion path. The CTA is the difference between someone visiting your site and leaving no trace other than their IP address and a conversion, earning insight and permission to communicate with them in the future.
'Smart CTAs' enable you to present different users with appropriate offers based on set variables, such as their buyer persona, where they are in the buying lifecycle, where they are located, and what device they are using. They help to improve conversion through context.
So, instead of showing the same CTA to everyone that goes to your site, you can display different CTAs to different users based on whatever criteria you like - including where they are in the buyer's lifecycle. Meaning you can save your top of the funnel content for first-time visitors and present your existing customers with content that will add value for them. For example, you may wish to offer your customers an eBook on how to get the most out of your product or service.
3. Email newsletters
Email newsletters don’t always enjoy the best reputation. We can all get irritated by the flood of emails pouring into our inbox every day - most of which fail to offer anything useful. However, when done right they can be highly effective.
An email newsletter reaches subscribers with regular content, keeping you top of mind. It gives you an opportunity to repurpose content like your blogs, curated content (third party posts you believe are worth sharing) and industry news. In this way, you point your customers and prospects to helpful and relevant content they otherwise might have missed.
Sending a monthly email newsletter to your customers reminds them you are still there to meet their needs and lets them know you appreciate them. To make sure you provide customers with content that engages them and adds value, you should tailor the content to a customer's specific needs and interests.
How can you keep your customers happy if you don’t know what they want?
Surveying your customers is the most direct way to find out how they feel about your brand and product, and to determine preferences for blog topics, content they’d like to see, and how they want to be interacted with. By acting on this feedback, you can ensure you are best meeting the needs of your customers.
It also runs deeper than that. The very act of asking your customers for their views on your company’s products and performance demonstrates that you’re prepared to listen to them and take account of their thoughts and opinions. By showing you care you make your customers feel valued.
These are some of the best practice tactics for continuing to engage with, delight and (hopefully) upsell your customer base into happy promoters of your company.
But remember - customer delight is not just a post-sale activity. You should be focused on delighting your customers; creating remarkable, personalised content based on their needs and interests, at every stage of the buying cycle. This will help you build trust at every interaction, starting from long before they are ready to make a purchase decision.