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A B2B Guide to Winning New Customers and Repeat Business [INFOGRAPHIC]

Much ink has already been spilled on the topic of customer acquisition vs. customer retention. Conventional marketing wisdom holds that retaining current customers is way easier, cheaper, and better than attracting new ones. But the fact remains that you need to maintain the right revenue mix between new and existing customers to sustainably grow.

That’s what our latest infographic helps you achieve. In today’s entry, we compare how selling to new customers differs from targeting repeat business so that you’ll get a good grasp of how to tailor your marketing strategy for each group.

A B2B Guide to Winning New Customers and Repeat Business [INFOGRAPHIC]

Almost all B2B marketers agree that the path to consistent sales growth starts with the right balance between new customers and repeat purchases, but most organizations follow marketing strategies that are heavily skewed toward customer acquisition. Surveys carried out by Econsultancy and Act-On found that:

33% of marketers plan to increase spending on customer acquisition vs. 18% on customer retention

82% of B2B marketers prioritize lead generation, while 43% focus on customer retention

Too much emphasis on new customers can leave your current customer base behind, which means you’re potentially racking up missed opportunities for upselling and cross-selling, not to mention losing out on customer loyalty and referrals. For businesses that provide subscription-based services (such as SaaS companies), the opportunity cost from overlooking current customers can be far more serious.

On the other hand, B2B companies also need to haul in a steady stream of fresh customers. Customer acquisition brings in the needed business to build a solid client base and counter customer churn. That’s why startups and other companies that have yet to establish their brand prioritize acquisition.

Related: 10 Affordable Marketing Ideas for Software Startups

How should you balance finding new customers and keeping current ones? A study from Optimove partly answers this question. Their research looks at 180 brands in a variety of growth stages and compares these companies’ new: existing customer ratios. The findings suggest that organizations’ optimal revenue mix largely depends on business maturity and growth level:

  • Younger companies with stagnating revenue growth typically have 90% of revenues from new customers. This means new customers aren’t translating into steady, recurrent revenues, and they need to tilt this ratio more toward repeat business.
  • Young, fast-growing companies also tend to have a revenue mix that’s weighted more toward new customers, but they derive at least 30% of revenues from existing customers.
  • Established, steadily-growing companies generate 60% to 80% of their revenues from existing customers.
  • Older companies with stagnating revenue growth derive around 90% of sales from existing customers. However, this degree of dependence on repeat business indicates reduced spend levels on the part of their current customers.

All this means that companies need to find the sweet spot between new and repeat business. The first step is to find out how these two groups compare with one another.

The infographic uses seven essential qualities to help you determine how to engage each customer type: buyer profile, pain points/purchase drivers, outreach tactics, revenue potential, costs/profitability, and relevant metrics.

It’s clear that each customer group has its own set of unique qualities, which also means each customer type requires its own marketing approach. So, keep these characteristics in mind as you develop and refine your customer acquisition and retention strategies.

Ways to Provide Online Customer Service without Getting Creepy

creepy online customer service

You can master all sorts of modern marketing strategies: search engine optimization, e-mail marketing, STP (segmentation, targeting, positioning), b2b lead generation, and more, but it’s your customer service quality that will define the integrity of the company in the customer’s perspective. It’s the best strategy that makes all successful marketers share one great aspect, satisfied customer.

However, many companies still struggle in offering the best customer service. Most try so hard that they never realize they are already overdoing customer service; some tend to become really creepy in tracking customer needs and preferences making them really annoying which distort their customer service.

Keep in touch
Keep in touch with your customers regularly, but in a sense that you are not causing any annoyance. Send email in a reasonable pattern. Don’t just send emails, unless you want to end up in spam folder. Inform your customer that your company has a monthly email circulation and if they wanted to subscribe. This is a good way to establish connection with your new products, sale items, and special offerings. Use other channels in keeping the connection: social media, website cookie, mobile technology, and more. Just ensure to never make your customers feel like they are being tracked because that’s really creepy!

Add relevant Information
The main reason why most customers leave the website immediately is because they can’t find what they are looking for. It’s going to be very frustrating for them not to locate product information they need. This is just the first phase of losing valuable customers. Design a detailed page that has thorough product descriptions with graphical illustrations. Never bombard the page with product ads, just maintain a minimalistic and organized layout.

Cast magic words
Expelliarmus! No, not that kind of magic word, unless your customer is Voldemort. And that will make you look even creepier. This is the most apparent yet is always forgotten part of customer service. Use magic words like please, thank you, and you’re welcome. It’s always to your benefit to be courteous and polite to your customers. If you made a mistake, admit it quickly. But do not just offer them with perpetual apology, partner it with appropriate action.

Go beyond expectations
You don’t need to aim for a perfect customer service; going beyond customer expectation is enough. This is very vital because customers are diverse and they might not share same standards of customer service. They key idea here is understanding your customer and their needs. Design a simple and flexible product policy that can apply to all customers. This will set you away from saying “sorry ma’am, that’s our policy”. That line is absolutely aggravating.

Remember, offering the best customer service will not cost you much, and if it’ll cost you treat it as an investment. Because if you go the extra mile for a customer, they will go another mile, this time, with you.

 

Source: http://www.register.com/learningcenter/customer-service/5-ways-to-improve-customer-service-online/

How To Retain Current Customers In Lead Generation

Generating new sales leads can be hard, so why spend so much effort if you can just get it from your current customers? Of course, this will only work if your current clients are actually still willing to do business with you. That is why it is important to know some customer retention skills.  Lead generation can be a very demanding work, especially if you are talking to prospects for the first time. It will be very sensible if you could just talk to your current customers and see if they would like to sign up for a new service (or simply stay with you in the future). So, what are the basics that you should keep in mind?

  1. Communicate consistently – this is very important, especially if you have some new policies or changes that are taking place. For example, you are going to terminate your current line of product or service, and you want to know if your prospects are interested to accept the change. Communicating with your customers and B2B leads will not only help in disseminating information, it also serves to cushion the impact of such change when it happens.
  2. Know what your customers want – while this might sound like an easy tip, you might be shocked to learn that all you did was ‘think’ that you ‘know’ what your customers want. Be more active in learning their desires, their needs, as well as their requirements. Only then will you be more effective in offering business solutions. It would be a good idea to employ telemarketing here, since this will give you an open channel for communication.
  3. Improve constantly – in order to maintain a business relationship as much as possible, you must constantly improve your product offers. Appointment setting is a task that can be made much easier if you have something new and exciting to offer. Current clients and business prospects would be thrilled to know that you have something good to offer.
  4. Have a channel of communication – it can take many forms, like social media, a reply option in emails, or perhaps a regular telemarketing call. All these can be used in order to gauge the current of customer thinking, as well as provide an avenue in which to identify what customers want from you. Also, you can provide your customers an avenue to air their grievances.
  5. Always be ready for the competition – you cannot take your competitors lightly. In one way or another, you will always be faced with the possibility that they might steal your prospects and clients. Be ready to deal with their machinations. Remember, you need to retain your customers if you want to save time in generating B2B leads.

Of course, if you need help in marketing, it would be a good idea to outsource the work to a capable telemarketing firm. You need to be in touch with your business prospects, right? It might require a little aggressive tool to improve your sales leads generation.