Marketing has always been a challenge for businesses. There are so many complexities involved with finding customers and bringing your business to them, then getting them to trust you enough to buy into your business. But that doesn’t mean it needs to be complicated – if done properly.
In the past, marketers believed that leads would enter their marketing funnel, flow through each level as intended, and then rocket out the other side as a customer. The end.
The old marketing funnel looked something like this:
Awareness --> Engagement --> Discovery --> Purchase
We would argue that it was hardly as simple then, and it most certainly isn’t as simple today.
But it was easy to simplify the process back then without variables such as the internet, google, smart phones, social media, etc. Now that these things exist, businesses have no excuse for holding onto the old school thought of marketing.
Today, businesses need to understand that the purpose of a lead is to no longer turn them into a customer, but to maximize the value of a customer’s lifecycle.
To do this, marketers will need to acknowledge some other levels to the process, which include:
- Retention: To keep a customer past the initial purchase,
- Expansion: To garner more sales.
- Advocacy: To have your customers promoting your business and bringing you more customers.
Businesses must also be prepared for anyone to enter the marketing funnel at any time and be equipped to build a relationship that provides value above and beyond a customer’s initial expectations.
Turning a once simple funnel into something that could resemble this:
Businesses should no longer only try to win customers but try to win repeat customers who will be ambassadors for their business, who will influence others into becoming customers.
So how is this executed?
To successfully market to customers in today’s world, a business must think beyond the sale. How do you move from customers to fans and followers? Here are some things that can work:
- Keep a professional looking social media pages that provide a glimpse into your business.
- Connect, listen, and interact with customers over social networks.
- Create valuable content that draws people into your mastery through blogs, videos, or how-to’s.
- Optimize your business online and ensure your website is updated and functional for both computers and mobile.
- Allow customers to subscribe to newsletters to stay connected with your business.
- Host or sponsor events that bring the community together. Partner with other businesses to create entire experiences for you customers.
- And good old-fashioned advertising. But smart advertising that is targeted to the niches relevant to your business.
Marketing your business today can seem complicated, but when you know how to properly manage the expectations of your customers, you’ll find succeeding can result in more business than ever before.
Taking the leap from old school to new school takes some serious work. We’re ready to help you plan your new marketing strategy, build onto the foundation of your business, and grow your customer base.