Every online business owner will tell you that digital marketing is key to long-term success. Digital marketing helps you to grow your customer base, increase brand awareness and increase sales. However, too many online businesses focus on a limited number of digital marketing practices, while ignoring other tactics that contribute to their success. Popular digital marketing techniques, like search engine optimization (SEO) and advertising, are valuable for increasing the volume of traffic to your site, but each faces limitations when your goal is to increase revenue. Businesses looking to further the returns of any digital marketing campaign need to incorporate messaging into their strategy to create loyal customers. Read on to learn 7 ways they support your business growth.
Why messaging is a key part of a successful digital marketing campaign
When most people think of digital marketing campaigns, one specific aim comes to mind: increasing your revenue. While increasing your revenue is an important goal, it shouldn’t be your only goal since revenue only comes after customers become convinced that your product is for them. Thus, increasing revenue is the result of a process whereby you bring visitors to your website through various channels, then drive them towards conversion using messaging. Including messaging in your digital marketing campaign offers numerous benefits, the first being strengthening relationships with existing customers and building them with new customers. Another benefit when you incorporate messaging into your digital strategy is you motivate visitors toward conversion.
Focusing on customer retention
Existing customers represent a huge potential for businesses to increase revenue. These customers already know your brand and its reputation. This makes existing customers more likely to convert than new customers. By focusing solely on attracting new consumers to your brand and neglecting existing customers, businesses limit their potential because it costs, on average, five times more to convert a new customer than to motivate an existing customer to make a repeat purchase.
Not only does it cost more to motivate a new customer to make a purchase, but this cost is also likely to have a lower return. Existing customers are 50% more likely to buy new products and spend an average of 33% more than new customers.
Retaining customers has a significant impact on your bottom line, an increase that compounds over time as you retain customers. Research found that increasing customer retention by a rate of 5% can increase profits by anything from 25% to 95%. The list below outlines a few other benefits of focusing on existing customers.
1. Referral marketing
Loyal customers are a valuable source of referrals for your business because loyal customers tell their friends and family about their experience with your brand. Referral marketing is a very valuable form of marketing that is difficult to achieve if not for word of mouth from loyal customers.
Studies found that 92% of consumers would trust a word-of-mouth referral, even from someone they don’t know well. Furthermore, more tech-savvy generations, like Millennials and Gen Z, are more likely to share their brand preferences online, thus amplifying your messaging to their wide network of friends and followers, which drives conversion.
2. Loyal customers provide invaluable data
As Tatango explains, building and maintaining relationships with customers provides invaluable customer analytics that provides useful information you can analyze to create benefits for your operations in a wide range of different ways. You may use customer analytics to learn more about your target audience, what they like and don’t like, where they shop, what social media they use most frequently, and many other aspects about your customers that improve your targeting and messaging. Customer analytics can also prove useful when it comes to new product development and product improvements as you learn more about unmet needs and desires shared by your customers. Your website design can even benefit from customer analytics as you discover which pages on your site keep a user’s attention the longest when you segregate new users from frequent visitors.
3. Loyal customer’s leave feedback
A loyal or returning customer is much more likely to leave a product review than a first-time customer. Customer reviews are very useful for businesses, having almost as much impact as word-of-mouth referrals. This is because online shoppers are likely to trust customer reviews as much as a word of mouth recommendation.
4. Loyal customers find your marketing less intrusive
Reesearch found that loyal customers are four times more likely to appreciate when a brand reaches out to them with information about new products, discounts/coupons, and to share news regarding the brand. Loyal customers are also more receptive to these discounts, sales, and other forms of promotional offers since they already have a favorable opinion of your brand.
The points above outline just some of the reasons why focusing on existing customers is as, if not more, important than attracting new customers. Now that you understand more about the value of existing customers, it is time to focus on the messaging practices that can help you to market to loyal customers.
Now, let’s transfer our attention to tools useful in marketing to existing customers.
Marketing to existing customers
The average person spends 5.4 hours a day checking, composing, and responding to emails. Thus, email marketing offers businesses a cheap and effective way to connect to their existing customers to remind them about the things they enjoy about the brand, offer assistance, or offer discounts.
For effective email marketing, you must personalize the content as much as possible, going as far as deep personalization based on individual customer characteristics by segmenting your customer base into more homogeneous groups. After segmenting the list, send specifically targeted emails that appeal to each group. For instance, if a customer purchased a product in the past, offer them a discount when the product goes on sale.
Adopting a personalization strategy increases the effectiveness of your email program vs. sending a blanket email to all customers. You should also try and personalize the subject line to increases the likelihood a customer will open your marketing email.
Text messaging is potentially another very valuable method of connecting with your existing customer base instantly. Businesses must obtain a customer’s permission before adding them to their text marketing, as not doing so can hurt your brand’s image and may violate laws in some areas.
Text messages are very short by their very nature. But, don’t use that as an excuse to send frequent text messages to your customers or you may find they block you. Like email marketing, you should try to personalize text messages as much as possible, thus ensuring text messages offer the highest value to the customer. You should pay attention to the tone and style of the texts you write to ensure the voice of these texts best suits your brand image and your customers’ preferences.
Social media marketing
Social media marketing differs slightly from text and email marketing. An effective social media marketing campaign strives to increase engagement among your customer base as well as to drive prospective customers to your website. Engagement involves listening and responding to messages posted by your community. Avoid posting constantly about yourself and instead think about posting interesting or entertaining content to your community. Don’t be afraid to be yourself and share aspects of the inner workings of the business. Customers and prospects love to know more about you as a person, not just an impersonal brand.
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Hausman and Associates, the publisher of MKT Maven, is a full-service marketing agency operating at the intersection of marketing and digital media. Check out our full range of services.