B2B lifecycle marketing: inspiration and ideas for your business
The goal of automation is twofold. First, it aims to deliver relevant and personalised experiences to customers; and second, it aims to create a seamless process that attracts, captures and nurtures leads. While email marketing campaign management is where you are likely to see relevancy and personalisation, the seamless customer experience from one sales cycle stage to the next is what is referred to as lifecycle marketing.
Without automation, lifecycle marketing wouldn’t be possible. The difference between lifecycle marketing and other campaign management solutions is that lifecycle marketing focuses on the value of a customer during their lifetime, not simply the moment they turn from suspect to lead, but also their loyalty and retention – processes that happen after they’ve become customers. No doubt, lead generation is vital for sustaining a company, but according to Gartner Research, 80 percent of a company’s revenue comes from just 20 percent of their existing customers. That’s why lifecycle marketing works to emphasise engagement in order to increase the chances of closing more deals and then working to turn those deals into repeat customers and even advocates.
Let’s look at 3 true and tried inspirational tactics that you can apply to your lifecycle campaigns to make for happier prospects and customers through their buying journey.
Mapping the customer lifecycle
Your marketing campaigns should be designed to respond to any type of customer – no matter where they are in the stages of the sales cycle. Sure, it’s impossible to map out the journey of each customer since we are all unique in our needs. By mapping out a route to help all prospects to navigate to their final purchase decision, however, means being prepared to deliver the right message at each customer lifecycle stage. From there, the goal is to enable them to continue their journey with us as pre-existing customers.
Adapting to changes in customer behaviour
The more evolved your understanding of customer behaviour and needs, the more you are able to drive positive outcomes. When a potential customer shows interest, this should set off a series of activities that reflect where they are in the sales cycle, as well as the messages that they should receive to ensure they move through it. This is where automation comes in, leading a potential customer through their own, personalised journey. Lifecycle management enables this to happen – from prospect to customer and beyond.
Making use of your CRM
Your CRM should be used on a day-to-day basis. Not only by sales reps, but also by your marketing team, who should be checking in periodically to view progress and changes in customer data. In order to achieve success, your leads have to be nurtured and qualified to pass to the next stages of the customer lifecycle. Opportunities should also be carefully reviewed to learn what the next steps are to progress them in their buying journey.
The customer journey doesn’t stop when a prospect translates into a customer: it continues long afterwards. Are we able to close more business with our already-existing customer? Can we treat them so well that they become our brand advocate? How successful are you at getting customers to buy more from you? Treat them well throughout their journey and you will achieve more than just one-time buyers.