Nipun Sethi, HGS Deputy General manager - Business Development
In a crowded market space, customer retention and acquisition strategies are investments worth making. And Econsultancy research shows that while 44% of companies surveyed have a greater focus on acquisition, only 18% of companies surveyed were primarily focused on retention. It’s a fact that customer acquisition can be more costly than customer retention, and it’s often more challenging, for these reasons:
- There is a broadening landscape of market competition and today’s customers are confused by the ever-increasing options. With multiple products vying to be chosen, customer attention span is dwindling.
- Today’s disruptive technologies are adding to the difficulty of reaching out to customers who bar promotional calls and messages using call blocking apps. With varying regulatory and quality assessment protocols in different countries, acquiring new customers through telephony has become more challenging than ever before. Companies now need to work out new and powerful customer acquisition methods and tools that don’t violate regulatory protocols.
For smart, consistent customer acquisition, build these elements into your strategy:
- Social Media, Email Marketing, and Telesales—For acquisition opportunities that meet customers where they are (mobile), there are two essential strategies: social media and specialized email acquisition strategy.
- There are multiple ways to make friends, develop advocates and convert those relationships into sales. A sound social media content marketing strategy—one that leans on images is key. Research shows that a picture is worth 1,000 words — photos drive twice as much engagement as text posts do on Facebook. Gamification, with products and swag giveaways are another way to bring in new customers.
- A specialized email acquisition strategy empowers your customer acquisition while refining the overall quality of the list. Understanding your website visitors via inbound marketing content and SEO help you to create smarter email lists, so you can target potential customers with the right messages. And these “right messages” are often about choosing the right wording to communicate with potential customers’ on an emotional level. In today’s reputation economy, brands need to remember that experiences are not logical, they are emotional. Finding new ways to create an emotional connection with customers throughout each stage of the digital journey is absolutely critical. Also, email content that is educational in nature—for example, guidance targeted to potential customer needs, is a way to be perceived as a trusted advisor. This establishes a relationship based on good service, not an overt sales pitch.
To help support these solutions, you’ll need a trained telesales support team armed with in-depth product knowledge, as well as the digital tools to increase functioning efficiency and scale through interactive CRM.
- Analytics and Automation—Employ analytics and automation for visibility into your potential customer base. Identify prospective customers with analytics that track customer browsing and shopping trends, before establishing contact. The quality of that first contact has tremendous influence on customers and subsequent interactions. Trend analytics can help you spot and track crucial trends that can lead to increased revenue through effective customer targeting. You can also use predictive analytics to know which products prospective/ current customers may need in future by observing their browsing and purchasing patterns. And choose from today’s acquisition marketing automation platforms to capture leads on multiple fronts. You can integrate captured leads into one interface for cost effective and easy access to a well-segmented database of your target audience.
- And to bring it all together, companies need a unified engagement strategy, to balance the delivery of great customer experiences and cost transformation. Because, once acquired, you have to keep these customers. While the investment starts at acquisition, it must be sustainable and supported with digital innovation and engagement to drive optimized CX.