Congrats! A new customer just bought something from your brand, and guess what? You lost money.
Yep, you read that right. Studies have shown that a lot of brands don’t make money on first-time buyers. In many cases, initial purchases simply recoup some of the money brands spent turning those consumers into customers.
Bain & Company studied this conundrum by identifying customer value over time across several e-commerce industries. The study had a number of interesting takeaways for marketers:
- Return visits are essential for profits. For example, the study found that online apparel brands didn’t turn a profit until individual customers shopped on their site four times.
- Customer retention is a long game. According to the study, apparel brands need to retain a customer for at least a year before breaking even.
- Loyal customers = incremental sales. Customer loyalty isn’t just about repeat sales. There are several ways loyal customers drive incremental sales.
How Content Marketing can boost customer loyalty
In the loyalty stage of the buying journey, the relationship between your brand and first-time buyers is fresh, so there’s ample opportunity to strengthen the relationship. The key is to reach your new customers with the right messages at the right times.
To accomplish these goals and objectives, here’s a three-step Content Marketing strategy to help your brand boost customer loyalty.
Step No. 1: Create helpful and informative content
Don’t assume that just because someone buys your product that they know exactly how to use it or that they’re aware of all the bells and whistles. Instead, create content pieces that help your new customer get the most out of your products.
For example, let’s say your brand sells iPhones. Some of your customers could be lifelong iPhone fans who know how to use every feature before they get the device out of the box. But, you’ll also have plenty of customers who aren’t very tech-savvy and might be using a smartphone for the first time.
For the latter group, you have a premium opportunity to build lasting relationships and create a fresh crowd of loyal customers. So, rather than letting them figure out their new phone on their own (and risk losing them when it’s time for an upgrade), create content pieces designed to teach them how to use specific features and proactively address their common questions.
Step No. 2: Send the content directly to customers
When a customer makes a purchase, encourage them to sign up for email alerts or e-newsletters. Not only does this get the content directly to your customers, but you can monitor the relationship in your CRM. With a CRM, you can track micro-conversions (small steps customers take toward a purchase), macro-conversions (major steps toward a purchase or actual sales) and the lifetime value of the customer.
One brand that does a great job with this strategy is Amazon Alexa. Amazon regularly sends out product updates and reminders about popular features to help customers use Alexa and start using other Amazon products. These emails often link to other content pieces (like those we covered in the first step) to help customers learn more.
Step No. 3: Promote the content on social media
For customers who don’t sign up for your email lists or who don’t interact much with emails, there are other ways to get this content in front of them. Publishing the content on your blog and optimizing it for search results is a good start, but you also want to get it out on other channels – like social media.
For an example of this, let’s go back to Amazon. The Facebook post below is just one example of the content Amazon shares about its Alexa device. The post promotes a piece of content the company created that gave customers a look at a day in the life of Alexa. The content piece was both entertaining and informative, showcasing many of the tasks Alexa can perform for users. By promoting the content on social media, Amazon was able to get this piece of content in front of the product page’s 600,000-plus followers.
This is the final post in our series explaining how to use organic content throughout the consumer buying journey. If you’re interested in learning more, check out the previous posts below or contact Mindstream Media today to learn how our Content Marketing solution can help you build awareness, nurture leads, drive sales and build customer loyalty.
Overview: Learn how your brand can use organic content like blog posts, product webpages, social media posts, infographics and video to deliver the information consumers need throughout the buying journey.
Overview: In the awareness stage, consumers are just starting their buying journey and often have a lot of questions about the purchase. When done right, organic content pieces can help your brand answer those questions and build a rapport with consumers.
Overview: In the consideration stage, shoppers are conducting specific research about an upcoming purchase and narrowing down their list of options. Check out this post to learn how your brand can reach the top of those lists by delivering the information shoppers need.
Overview: In the decision stage, buyers have made a purchase decision, but that doesn’t mean they know where or how to buy. Check out this blog post to learn three Content Marketing strategies that help brands deliver buyers the right information at the right times.