Here’s a rare one for you; not long ago we were speaking to a prospect client and we started with a question about their core objectives. We asked them, “we assume you want us to help you gain more customers?”
And they said “no, in fact we’re too busy!”
That’s bloody brilliant and if you have more than you can cope with, then this blog is not for you. If you do want to understand how to get more, then great, the following 4 tips are perfect for you. Do read on…
It won’t surprise you to hear that it’s in fact very rare for a client to not want more customers. Of course not just any old customers; they want the ‘decent’ ones, the ones that don’t kick tyres, that don’t go for the cheapest, that actually have an intent to buy. It’s a piece of cake, right?
Typically clients want us to help them as they have the following problems:
• Where can we find more customers?
• How do we find out more about them?
• How do we increase sales?
For us, the end-product of our work with clients should always be growth; growth in either their customer base, product or service sales.
Before we get into things, here’s a quick 30 second tip from our MD about a core area for you to consider.
So where do you start?
Initially we need to establish if you’re B2B or B2C. The approach will be similar but the tools at our disposal are different. We’ll cover the things that are similar first and then get into the detail of where it starts to differ.
1: The customer focus
Understanding your customers and getting data is critical. You’ll need to answer some fundamental questions, and once these are clarified, set them against a marketing plan with a ‘push’ and ‘pull’ approach, while considering frequency and how to go about measuring it.
• Who are our customers?
• Where are they?
• How are we going to engage with them?
• What channels would be best?
• What are we going to say to them?
• How often?
• What budget can we assign as a cost per acquisition?
2: Awareness and need
If you made face masks and hand sanitizer, then you’ve just had your best 12 months ever. The pandemic and government have created a need and driven awareness, making the job of marketing to be discoverable.
Typically in the context of a sustained marketing strategy you need to consider that not all customers are in a position to need or want your offering, so you need to consider these steps:
• Awareness – Of your brand
• Consideration – Do they need what you are offering
• Familiarity – Do they like and trust your brand
• Preference – Do they prefer your offering to others
3: Targeting customers
To influence your customer, you need to know which marketing channels are most relevant to them. If you’re a B2C brand we recommend undertaking a media audit, this can be based on say any postal address data you might hold on existing customers for example; we always start on the premise that it’s easier to target a higher penetration of customers for whom we know the brand is relevant, than start to investigate whole new markets.
A media audit will inform you of the most efficient channels for reaching your audience, along with a likely ‘cost per thousand’. We would then look to overlay any qualitative research insights onto the data, to understand buying motivations for your target audience. Typically, aligning commercial objectives with customer insights will inform our choice of advertising channel.
If you’re B2B then same as B2C, the data on existing customers is helpful as we can look at look-a-like audiences through either database purchase or targeting in digital channels. Business surveys can help identify needs along with social listening.
Business to Business Marketing (B2B) purchases are often of a higher value than B2C, and so it’s unlikely to be made on simple impulse alone. B2B products and services are often complex and require more research, and interaction, before someone is ready to buy.
4: The marketing strategy
Short term gains are of course viable, however most marketing strategies are not about quick wins. And it’s an easy mistake to make, to confuse your marketing strategy with your marketing plan, but there is a subtle difference that needs to be considered if you’re going to be successful. And that first step is to ensure you don’t put the “how” before the “why”.
Your marketing strategy should affect the way you run your business, and be the foundation for your decision-making. If you don’t know who you are and what you stand for, how can your customers?
• Identify your overarching business goals so you can plan to fulfil them
• Research your target market, focusing on trends, market size and demographics
• Profile your customers, potential customers and competitors
• Profile your business to understand where you fit into the market
Need more help?
As a challenger agency our approach delivers results, if we didn’t we’d reduce our fees. But don’t just take our word for it, check out our case studies for examples of the brands we’re already helping, or get in touch to discuss how we might be able to help you.