Marketing During the Customer Lifecycle

The Customer Lifecycle or Path to Acquisition refers to key milestones that every customer goes through over the course of the relationship with a brand (https://www.custora.com/university/for-marketers/lifecycle-marketing/basic/what-is-the-customer-lifecycle). The goal of Customer Lifecycle Marketing is to tailor marketing communication based on the lifecycle stage of the customer.

 The Customer Lifecycle Journey Map

Awareness

During this stage prospective customers are unaware of the company, don’t know the product exists, or they are unaware of their need for a product. The consumer first becomes aware of a brand after being exposed to that brand via online and/or offline marketing efforts. The consumer is exposed to some combination of online advertising e.g. pay-per-click ads, social media ads, display ads, promotion emails, or SEO marketing. Offline exposure may result from trade shows, word-of-mouth, or radio, TV, and print ads.

Consideration

If the ad speaks to the needs of the consumer, he/she then considers the product or service – and if interested – proceeds to research the product or service. During this phase the consumer my click-through one or more ads to get more information. Offline, the consumer may open a direct mail advertisement from the organization. During this stage it is critical to resolve misunderstandings about the features and product offerings; resolve perceptions of low quality and low value; and make it easy for consumers to find information about the company or product. Common KPI’s for this stage track consideration and preference:

  • Product Market Share: To track which models sold the most and trends
  • Feature Affinity: To identify which features are driving sales & word-of-mouth
  • Brand Leaders & Laggards: Quantify how often brand mentioned relative to its competition
  • Social Media: find # of mentions on social media – what are customers talking about and sentiment toward company/product

Acquisition

If there is adequate product differentiation, the technical review details resonate with the consumer, and the company appears stronger than the competition, the brand acquires the consumer. The consumer selects and purchases the brand’s product or service either online, by phone, or in-person. Common KPI’s for this stage track actions of visitors to the company’s website:

  • Click-through-rate – % clicking on Call-to-Action
  • Shopping Cart Abandonment Rate
  • Average time on website

Service

Once the product or service is received and used, the company seeks to maintain the relationship by servicing the customer online via live chat, apps, or email – or offline via customer service, onsite, or a user’s manual. It is important that if the product is purchased online that it doesn’t take too long to receive and that the setup process is easy and fast. During this phase the brand seeks to provide superior customer service and to learn more about the needs of the customer.

  • First-call resolution
  • Service-level response time
  • Adherence to schedule
  • Forecasting accuracy
  • Self-service accessibility
  • Contact quality
  • Customer satisfaction

To learn more about customer service metrics

Loyalty/Advocacy

The company then moves to develop the customer’s loyalty via up-selling, referral campaigns, email marketing, blogs, newsletters, and/or customer satisfaction surveys. Depending on the customer’s experience with the company, the customer either becomes a distractor (likely to talk negatively about the product) or a promoter (likely to talk positively about the product) of the brand. Common KPI’s for this stage track:

  • Net Promoter Score (NPS) – likelihood of recommending a product – measure of customer loyalty
  • Likelihood to Repurchase

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