And why is it relevant to marketing automation?
Welcome To Lifecycle Management!
We are all human beings, and when looking to solve a problem, we tend to follow a standard routine or path. Using email marketing, we can guide visitors along this path until a successful conclusion – a purchase. If you had clicked on the button above to request a free trial, this would generally indicate that you have moved beyond the awareness stage.
- You are aware of the problem or need – e.g. your current marketing activities are failing or not delivering the number of leads needed for your business.
- It would help if you now found out what is available – what is essential for you. Is it price or service or some particular element that you must have?
- Now that you know what is essential to you, you start comparing the different options and decide the right solution for you. Maybe it is a trial or downloading a whitepaper to examine the finer details.
- This is the big one. It would help if you now decided who to buy from. Is the company a good fit? Are you looking for ongoing help, or maybe you want to purchase and be left alone.
Lifecycle Management: #Awareness
This part of the process is lead generation. You are the experts in your business. You live, breath your business and understand more about it than your visitors. You want to be aware of this and offer high-value information that your visitors will want to download in exchange for their email address. Once the form has been completed the email marketing comes into play during the stage:
- The Welcome email
- These are opened more than any other type of email and their reception is extremely important because it establishes your relationship with your new subscriber. The importance here is to lay out exactly what they should expect, both in terms of content and frequency.
- Engage with us on social media
- Encourage your new subscriber to engage with you further through social media. It the welcome email is received well, subscribers are more likely to share the content with their friends and colleagues, thus increasing the number of new subscribers.
- Introduce other Information
- You new subscriber is at the awareness stage and probably looking for more information, so it is important to direct them to our resources, like whitepapers, eBooks and your blog
Finally, the plan now is to progress the new subscriber from the awareness stage to the Research stage. Every email should encourage subscribers to dig a little deeper, and when they do, your life-cycle management comes alive.
At the bottom of this screen, you will see a box with the title “Download the complete guide to email marketing”. This is an example of an awareness stage offer. Go ahead and download a copy for yourself.
This means tailoring your communications to your contacts and their individual situations. All your contacts will be at different stages in the customer lifecycle and your automations should reflect this. Utilise different platforms such as emails, SMS and social media to ensure the right message is being sent at the right time.
Every stage of the marketing lifecycle is crucial; you need to ensure you have a comprehensive approach covering all areas. At Flowbird, we work with clients every day to develop lifecycle campaigns to suit their businesses. You can leave the hard work to us, or we can simply point you in the right direction. We can be flexible to provide the level of support you need.
The first stage of the lifecycle is when a new contact interacts with your business for the first time. The most common example of this is subscribing to your newsletter.
Your new lead has actively chosen to make contact with your company and this is an opportunity you need to grab with both hands. Whilst your customer is open to hearing more from your company, reach out to them with a dedicated welcome campaign.
Additionally, try to collect key information on their preferences and interests. This will make it easy for you to begin sending tailored campaigns right from the get-go.
Everyone loves being celebrated every now and again. Use birthdays and anniversaries to reach out to your contacts and make them feel valued.
Email them with a celebratory offer or just to say congratulations. This works well for birthdays, but can also be used for customer anniversaries.
Birthdays and anniversaries can make up an integral part of the customer lifecycle and they’re easy to set up without needing a lot of data.
The aim of a re-engagement campaign is to encourage a dormant customer to become active again. However – even if you don’t succeed – you are giving that dormant customer the opportunity to unsubscribe, rather than driving them to resent your business by continuing to send them emails they don’t want to receive.
With re-engagement campaigns, it’s important to remember that there’s nothing more effective than winning repeat business from an existing customer. After all, retaining a customer requires less input than generating a new one.
Following on from above, customer retention is key to a successful business. Your customers are what keep your business ticking over. It’s only right to reward them with interesting and valuable communication.
Segmentation is key for successful customer retention. Use the wealth of data you have on your customers to send them tailored campaigns that will be of interest to them. Tailor your communications to your customers’ purchases and other complementary products or services they may be interested in.
Behavioural targeting can range from abandoned cart emails to responding to a visitors’ activity on your website. Marketing is all about interactions, and behavioural emails should act as responses to what your contacts are doing.
You should be able to engage your contacts and encourage purchases by sending communications that are very relevant to them.
The Buyer’s Journey
The buyer’s journey is a vital concept in inbound marketing.
It is a concept that is extensively used by Hubspot in their inbound methodology. As the name suggests, it depicts the journey of the buyer from their awareness of your company and through to their becoming part of your customer base.
The Awareness Stage
The awareness stage is the stage in which the buyer has recognised a potential opportunity or a problem that they need to solve.
The buyer does some non-specific research on their issue.
- Blog articles
The Consideration Stage
In the consideration stage, the buyer understands exactly what their issue is, and has ideas on how to solve it.
The buyer does some more specific research on the options available for their problem or opportunity.
- Expert opinions and guides
- Videos tutorials
The Decision Stage
The decision stage is the stage in which the buyer is choosing exactly how (and with whose help) they are going to solve their problem.
The buyer compares options and makes a choice.
- Free trial
- Free consultation
How Flowbird can help:
Using the buyer’s journey, we design content to target potential customers on specific stages of their journey. We offer a number of services to aid in the progression of potential customers along the journey. Such services include content creation, article promotion and email marketing.
Growing Your Database
You need to attract prospective customers to give you their details, in return for emails, content and other communications that are of value to them. Once you’ve grown a decent database, you’ve got a lot of powerful data at your disposal. You need to use this wisely and make the most of it to engage and retain your contacts. An ultimate goal is a balancing act between growing your list of contacts, whilst only sending to people who are interested in your business and communications.
There are many tactics and methods you can use to grow your database. We can help you put together a strategy that will have your contact numbers increasing in no time. Using the following techniques, you can grow both your contact numbers and the amount of information you have about them.
Data capture forms on your website and social media pages are the most common ways to collect contact information. These are the places your contacts are most likely to be attracted to visit. Use eye-catching, easy-to-use forms and put them in places that are most likely to catch your visitors’ attention.
Subscription confirmation emails work well to keep your database clean. They ensure that your subscribers genuinely want to receive your communications.
Another method is to include ‘share on social media’ links when a contact signs up for downloadable content. This encourages your contacts to spread the word of your company and increases the number of form fills with minimum effort.
Using text data capture across your offline channels can help attract further audiences in-store and by direct mail. Additionally, custom QR codes on your advertising materials can widen your reach even further.
Growing a wealthy database of contacts is only the first part of the job. You need to keep your data accurate and up-to-date, ensuring that you’re not sending emails that don’t want to be received. Luckily for you, many email service providers will automatically deal with unsubscribes and hard bounces.
You should encourage your contacts to update their details and preferences. Not only will this keep your data clean, but it will also mean you can continue to send tailored and personalised emails to your contacts.
You work hard to grow your contact database and losing subscribers is never a nice feeling. However, it’s important to remember that unsubscribes are not a bad thing. Yes, perhaps they are not enjoying your communications, but it’s better for them to unsubscribe than to mark your emails as spam.
Once you’ve got a wealth of recent, accurate information on your contacts, you need to do something with it. In order to retain your customers, you need to use their details to send them interesting, personalised communications. We can help you retain your customers through well-crafted campaigns that deliver value to your contacts.