Building revenue for your company is more than just getting customers in the door. It’s about creating lifetime customers. To do so, pay attention to your customer lifecycle. The customer lifecycle refers to the full lifetime of customers from when they learn about your product, to when they make a purchase, to when they become a loyal customer.
The five stages of the customer lifecycle are:
The customer lifecycle starts with your sales team reaching customers and continues throughout the customer journey with sustained customer support. Once you reach customer retention, your team drives profitability. In fact, increasing customer retention by just 5% leads to a 25% to 95% increase in profit.
So obviously you want to keep customers engaged with your company and continue building revenue, right? You don’t reach the loyal customer stage by chance. You have to first actually connect with customers, and then have to maintain those connections.
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Making the Customer Connection
Customers expect you to keep them engaged across all channels. In fact, 85% of consumers expect to use a blend of physical and digital channels to connect. For sales and support interactions, customers value you saving time and money or making their lives easier.
Traditional channels like phone or email get a notoriously low response rate. They can be as low as 6% when salespeople try to make contact through a phone call or email! It makes since though, I mean, how many of us answer a call from an unknown number any more? And then, our email inbox is cluttered (I have about 4,000 unread messages in my inbox alone), with nearly 50% of emails being spam.
When you’re limited by traditional communication, other challenges get more complicated, too. Every sales and support team has to face:
- Difficulty in Lead Qualification: When email responses get delayed and phone calls go unanswered, your sales team struggles to track down and qualify hot prospects.
- Vying for the Competitive Advantage: Odds are, customers aren’t only talking to you. Your teams need tools that give them a competitive advantage and help them stand out.
- Managing Administrative Tasks: Sales teams spend less than 36% of their time selling due to manual processes and administrative tasks. They need tools that let them focus on selling.
- Maintaining Relationships Post-Sale: Once a prospect becomes a customer, support and sales need effective ways of nurturing a relationship.
How do you meet these challenges? Well, SMS messages have an open rate of 98% (compared to 20% of all emails and 16% of phone calls). So to break through the noise, and connect with customers faster through texting. By investing in texting technology, you can reach customers through the entire customer lifecycle.
Three Texting Tactics to Help your Bottom Line (and how to do ‘em)
1. Send mass promotional texts
The best way to boost sales and start the customer lifecycle is to reach customers through promotions. Once a text has been sent, 95% are read within the first 3 minutes of receipt. So sending out promotional texts to customers is a primary way to draw customers in..
An SMS promotional text may take only five minutes to set up. Let’s say you have a list of prospects that have opted into receiving texts. They responded to an ad campaign in the past and you want to draw them back in. Here are some ways to do so:
- Get creative with a text-to-win campaign to start a conversation.
- Blast a message about a new product discount that just launched.
- Create unique coupon codes for prospects to send via text.
How will this help your bottom line? Let’s take an example: Let’s say a clothing retail company sends one promotional campaign to about 1,200 people a month. After that campaign, they get about $2,500 in additional business for that month. By letting prospects know about possible discounts, they boosted their monthly revenue significantly.
>> Read Next: Why it’s Time to Build a Healthy Opt-In Text List (And How to Make it Happen) to Reach Your Target Audience
2. Encourage recovery of abandoned sales
I really struggle to follow through when I’m shopping online. Seriously, I’d be embarrassed to share how many of the open tabs on my computer are from different stores with items just sitting in my cart. I am notorious for abandoning carts. And I’m not alone. Nearly 88% of people never finish the checkout process. How can your sales team help avoid this loss of revenue?
To bring potential customers back into the customer lifecycle, follow up with customers who have abandoned purchases. Use texting to encourage those shoppers (like me) who’ve left products behind to come back and buy.
Let’s say a shopper leaves items behind in your online store. Have either your sales or your marketing create automated messages that send to their phone. It might look something like this:
Perhaps incentivize the customer to follow through on the sale with a small discount on their purchase. This use of texting restores customers who may otherwise walk away from a sale without a second thought.
3. Send date-triggered campaigns
Buying is personal and emotional, right? So, your customers want to feel known and respected by you. Personalized messaging stands out and helps you reach and acquire customers, while also nurturing the relationship. For a more personalized approach with your customers, send date-triggered campaigns.
These kinds of text messages let you text customers at times when they are primed to shop. This may be on their birthdays, anniversaries, or Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale reminders. Who doesn’t want to get free or discounted stuff on their birthday? Here’s how you can do this:
With the help of your texting platform, keep track of customer birthdays or note when customers first joined your company. Then automate date-triggered messages to go to those customers who opted into texts from you. Maybe send a promotional message five days before a customer’s birthday with a discount code or a BOGO deal so they have time to use it. Chances are, they’ll be excited about your birthday gift and will buy something in your store, supporting your bottom line and helping to retain customers.
Need more ideas on how to stand out from your competitors? Add MMS messaging to your texts to cut through the noise and improve your customer experience.
This post originally published on January 21, 2021 and was updated on June 9, 2022.