Have you considered all the stages of a customer relationship?
Updated: Oct 24, 2022
Including the two that many forget?
Right now prospects have a plethora of choices, and so, the instant purchase is less common. Instead, customers expect businesses to work hard and take them on a journey of discovery. If you aren’t addressing each stage of customer relationship building, you’ll not be maximising new business opportunities and worse, the business will be shedding clients to competitors.
But there is hope and it comes in the form of simple, logical guidance. We want to help you understand how to break down the customer relationship journey and get you thinking about the different types of content and why that’s important for each stage. If you can grab the attention of a new prospect and retain it for the long term, you’ll have created a winning formula. Just think, that long term customer becoming a brand champion. It’s through a friend's recommendation that I write this blog post on an Apple Mac - no surprise.
What are the stages of a customer relationship?
Discover: The beginning of your relationship with your potential customer. Your first impression means everything. How are you going to lure them in and make them want to know more about you?
Enlighten: More often than not, a buyer wants to be educated about the purchase they are about to make. It’s your job, as the seller, to help educate and enlighten prospective buyers about your products and services.
Convert: Once the prospects feel fully enlightened make sure it is easy for them to purchase. Having a straight forward sales communication that states the options for the customer as well as price points. Make the purchasing experience quick, simple, and easy.
The two that people forget:
Retain: An essential that cannot be overlooked. Once you’ve hooked a paying customer it’s vital to cherish, nurture and overwhelmingly value them. Forget to communicate with your customers and you’ll find a churn rate heading in the wrong direction.
Champion: If you’ve done the hard work in the retain stage then you’ll be well on your way to creating brand champions. The best kind of customer! These people live and breathe your brand, recommending your products to everyone they know and perhaps across social media. Reward these customers, they are gold dust to your business.
Why is it important to consider your marketing for these stages differently?
As we’ve now seen, your customer goes through a number of stages in their journey. By creating the right content and delivering a cohesive marketing funnel you will help maximise each prospect's journey. Let’s explain some examples to get you thinking about this in more context:
Discover: If you are going to spend your content creation budget on any phase of the customer journey, it’s here. Create rich, sexy, eye-catching, scroll-stopping content to stop a potential customer meandering past.
Enlighten: You’ve got me hooked, I want to know more but don’t frustrate me with slow-mo footage or artistic close-ups. Tell me about the product, make it clear, easy to consume, give me the values of your business, are you sustainable or ethical.
Convert: Ok, I am fully in the know, how can I purchase and what are my options. Again, make this simple and remove effort for your prospect. It shouldn’t be a hard task.
You can quickly begin to see that a marketing funnel needs to consider different types of content for the stages in a user journey. Here is some food for thought when it comes to our forgotten ‘retain’ and ‘champion’ stages:
Zinrelo (customer research company) - 80% of future profit will come from a fifth of loyal customers (the champions)
Bain & Co - An increase of 5% in customer retention can lead to a 75% increase in company profitability (yes, you read that right).
If you are finding new clients hard to come by or the churn rate on current customers is high then it’s likely you’re not addressing the full customer journey as well as you could. Be sure to evaluate your communication strategy at each stage, is there a drop in the chain? Has your messaging gone awry and are you applying the digital marketing toolkit effectively?
Book a free 30-minute consultancy session today or download our latest guide ‘5 step plan to transform your business with holistic digital marketing.