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February 12, 2016

Courting your Customers with Marketing Automation

Nicole Hanks


Liebe, Amour, Love.

You may not think of your marketing automation platform as a tool for keeping the spark alive with your customers during your relationship, (and hopefully it’s a long term one), but it is. Tools like Pardot and Marketo, combined with certified marketers are powerful, and can send targeted customer communication and post-sales behavior that will keep your relationship flourishing.

Let’s take a look at a few dating tips you can use with your marketing automation platform that will help you stay engaged, interpret your customer’s verbal and non-verbal communication, and set the relationship up for long walks on the beach for years to come.

Keep the Communication Going.

Once a prospect becomes a client, what happens? Making your new customer feel loved and appreciated starts from the very beginning. You can do this through a Customer Onboarding Nurturing program that:

•   Welcomes them to the family through email
•   Showcases your employees (especially those that have the most client interaction)
•   Shares industry resources, best practices, and other customer success stories 

These programs can have different forms such as an email every other day that is only sent during business hours over 5 or 30 days, and then taper to bi-monthly, and then monthly. Another idea is to start increasing communication about ROI, ease of use, and business cases before their renewal comes up and they need to make a decision to commit to you again.

Keep Dating.

Now, just because you sealed the deal with this customer…doesn’t mean your job is done yet. Customers will continue to visit your website, access your content, register for your webinars because they’ve made an investment in you and expect you to provide continuos value to them. Being that you and the customer are “official” you know the basics about one another. It’s time to start asking deeper questions when your customer encounters a web form, such as

•   “Would you recommend us to a friend or colleague looking for the same type of product/service?”
•   “What product feature or functionality would you like to implement next?”.

There are 100’s of other options, but be creative and ask questions that will help your team maintain or grow the customer relationship. Your customer will also feel the love when you’re not asking the same questions in a web form over and over again.

Be Ready When Things Get Rocky.

What happens when your customer gets distracted or has a hiccup and starts looking at your competitors? Are you tuned into the relationship if they start looking for someone new? Having page actions on things such as your Terms and Conditions landing page,  or on the “How to Cancel Service” article will give you the heads up that the relationship might be on the rocks. Be sure that these page actions send notifications to the right person on your team who can proactively reach out to the customer and see how things are going. If there is an issue, you could catch it early enough to set the relationship back onto the right path. By using the tracking information that you’re already collecting, you’ll catch your client’s non-verbal signs of unhappiness. 

Just like with relationships, marketing automation takes constant nurturing, communication, practice and learning from your mistakes. However if you pay attention to the customer’s behavior you can find ways to build a lasting relationship, creating a win-win scenario for both of you. [/fusion_text]

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