On a scale of one to 10, how would you rate your relationships with your customers? Are you still stuck in first date territory, awkwardly exchanging small talk over disengaging social media posts? Or are you skipping down the purchase funnel happily ever after on the road to long-term brand loyalty?
If you want a full and fruitful relationship with your customers, you'll have to get personal. Gone are the days of generic, one-size-fits-all marketing - nowadays people expect content to be relevant, personalised and tailored to them (75% of customers, in fact according to a recent survey by Eagle Eye).
And that’s why understanding each stage of the journey your customers go through when interacting with your brand is incredibly important. Much like the stages of a perfect, love-filled relationship from the awkward first date, to Facebook-official and on to a marriage made in conversion heaven.
For us here at Fresh Egg, everything we do is founded upon identifying customer needs and understanding the overall customer experience that a brand offers. By starting with this, we help our clients forge a meaningful and profitable connection with their audience at each and every stage of their journey.
When you know what your customer is looking for, why they want it, and how it fits into their overall experience with your brand, you can stop the guesswork and start to create useful, relevant and targeted content to directly meet their needs.
So, in the name of love, let's look at how to woo your customers online, not just at Valentine’s, but forever and always.
1. LET THEM TELL THEIR LOVE STORY
People love to talk about themselves. It’s human nature. Encourage your customers to do just that and share their love stories with you online – across your social channels, on your website, or in email. Let them play a part in your brand story.
This could be anything from a social post asking customers to share personal stories that are relevant to your brand, to harnessing reviews on your Google MyBusiness page.
Or conducting surveys, polls, email preference centres and in-person focus groups to see what your customers really think of your brand and what content they want to see from you.
The benefits of utilising user-generated content and customer insight like this are twofold. The more interaction your channels have, the more reach you’ll achieve, (as long as it ’s genuinely good content and not deemed engagement or click bait by the new Facebook algorithm, of course).
In addition, gathering customer insight from social posts, surveys, email and reviews allow you to hear straight from the ‘horses’ mouth – and what lovely horses they are too, your customers – giving you unbiased, real life audience data and assets to create better targeted and more personalised content for your channels.
A heart shaped win-win for everyone.
2. MAKE THEM FEEL SPECIAL
Show your customers they're loved and be intuitive in how you reward their loyalty with exclusive discount codes and loyalty rewards once they’ve reached a certain spend threshold, or let them create their own gift vouchers for others.
Collect customer data including any appropriate special occasions and then use it to surprise and delight them with intuitive service. For example, use their birthday to send a special treat straight to their inbox to incentivise a purchase or further interaction with your brand (i.e. a free bottle of wine with their birthday meal if you're a restaurant).
And it sounds obvious but use their name (and yours) in email marketing and when monitoring on social. Personalise your comms to show the human behind the faceless brand, not just in the copy you create, but in the graphics, video and visual content too.
3. SHOW THEM THEY’RE THE ONE
The key to a strong and lasting relationship is listening and understanding. So build a stronger bond with your customers by personalising your web content to them.
Start with tried and tested techniques like using recent purchase and onsite behavioural data to show them you’ve listened to their needs and suggest relevant products to go with recently bought items, or recommend others they may like. Reconnect with basket abandoners by reminding them to complete their purchase on email, with a one-click route straight back to where they left off. And start placing targeted and personalised content along their journey both on your website and offsite in emails and even printed communications to tailor your one size fits all customer’s journey to a real person – your customer.
As you develop a deeper understanding of your customers, start to look at grouping the varying audience needs that you find amongst your customers. If you can target that need and personalise an experience that meets that need, then not only are you able to optimise your customer journey to all audiences, you are taking that customer journey and optimising to several audiences. .
Learn more about personalisation with our 3-part blog series:
- Personalisation – what you need to know and why
- Why Google Analytics is crucial for personalisation
- The personalisation puzzle – how to use first & third party data
4. WOO THEM WITH CONVENIENCE
First impressions count – and if your website’s not dressed to impress, you could turn your customers off purchasing from you.
If you want more purchases on your website, more email sign ups from your online form, more views and comments on your latest blog post, you need to make it easy for your customers.
How many times have you left a website, frustrated from a poorly designed checkout process, a broken form or unobvious, clunky navigation?
To drive more conversions on your site – whatever those conversions may be – it’s the little things that matter. The small individual interactions that combine to form a whole onsite experience – those are the things that will move your customers on from first date territory into a long and lasting relationship with your brand.
So make it easy for them to find what they want on your site. Think about how you frame your products, position call-to-action buttons and how you can remove distractions. Ensure your content and navigation is optimised to increase persuasion, lower fear and remove blockers from your design. Let them fall in love with you nice and easy, instead of putting up barriers to get in their way.
Learn more about how CRO can optimise the customer journey in our 3-part blog series:
Need help with helping your customers fall in love with your brand? Get in touch today.