Preventing churn with customer retention marketing

Most people think of marketing as a business strategy designed to get new customers through the door to make a purchase.

While a lot of marketing is focused on new customer acquisition, there’s also a subset that caters to existing customers. Customer retention marketing is all about appealing to those who’ve already done business with you and convincing them to come back time and time again.

The basics of customer retention marketing

Customer retention marketing targets existing customers who’ve already made a purchase from your business. When successful, customer retention marketing can help your business in a number of ways

  • Increase the profitability of each repeat purchase
  • Drive purchaser frequency
  • Grow customer lifetime value
  • Decrease customer churn rates

Why is customer retention marketing important? You’ve likely heard that acquiring a new customer costs more than keeping an existing one. This is one of the key reasons organizations should focus on retention.

Existing customers are likely to spend more than new customers because they already trust your business and have seen the successful results you can deliver for them. Plus, satisfied customers are more likely to recommend you to others, leave positive reviews, and become brand advocates for your business.

Customer retention marketing strategies for your business

You can execute customer retention marketing through multiple mediums. What matters most is the message you’re sending to your existing customers. Here are a few examples of how a business can use customer retention marketing:

  • Email marketing. Instead of sending generic marketing emails, customize content to your existing customers. Thank them for their loyalty, offer exclusive discounts based on their purchasing level, or send promotions relevant to their past purchase history.
  • Onboarding. Customers who understand how to effectively use your product or service will get more satisfying results — and will be more likely to return to your business. Teach them how to get the most value from your offering through tutorials, blogs, videos, and one-on-one engagements. “If you can’t help your customer quickly get their first ‘win’ with your product or service, you’re likely to see them churn,” explains Ian Edwards, cofounder of BeeLiked, a provider of gamified incentive solutions.
  • Social media. While social media is a great tool for building visibility for new prospects, it can also be a handy medium for customer retention marketing. Ask customers to follow you on social media when they make a purchase so you can provide them with engaging content that helps you upsell and cross-sell to them.
  • Loyalty programs. Develop ways to offer your customers rewards, such as contests and raffles. You can also offer exclusive access to products or services for existing customers, helping them feel special and appreciated.

Customer retention marketing best practices

A key element of customer retention marketing is personalization. It’s important to understand that not all of your existing customers are at the same level of retention — one customer may be at risk of churning while another feels completely loyal to the brand.

Businesses that can differentiate between these customers and offer marketing messaging according to each customer’s level of retention will be more successful in their efforts. “Content marketing is a top-performing retention tool, and, due to its personalized nature, it can reinforce your customer relationships,” says Edwards.

In addition, organizations need the right tools to make sure nothing slips through the cracks.

Using software like Jotform to securely collect data and automate workflows ensures organizations limit issues related to human error and miscommunication. Streamlining your customer retention marketing processes helps you reach more customers in a shorter amount of time.

Another best practice to follow for better results is using a varied approach. There’s no single customer retention marketing tactic that will appeal to all of your customers.

Reach them in multiple ways, such as through email marketing, social media, and in-person customer service. Having multiple touchpoints where you can show customers your value increases the likelihood they’ll return.

Customer retention marketing is a vital subset of marketing strategy for businesses that want to increase profitability and build a loyal following. Be sure to use all the different marketing mediums that are appropriate for your audience and follow industry best practices to catch your customers’ attention.

Photo by Patrick Tomasso on Unsplash

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