For a long time, many B2C companies have been focusing on mass marketing strategies to hit their business goals. This is the complete opposite of B2B companies that have taken the customer-centric approach to win over important clients, especially since their clients have a high lifetime customer value. But as markets and industries evolve, B2C companies also need to adopt a customer-centric marketing strategy if they want to stay competitive.
But why exactly is a customer-centric marketing strategy so important?
Lifetime Customer Value (LCV)
With a customer-centric marketing strategy, you can maximize the customer lifetime value of your customer base. This gives you a significant advantage over the competition. You’ll be able to build around loss-leader campaigns, outspend competitors, scale your campaigns faster, and expand into new channels with ease. You’ll also be outpacing your competitors, since you can use your CLV data to drive your marketing in the right direction.
Growing consumer options
In the Internet age, your competitors are merely a few clicks away. If you aren’t providing an exceptional customer experience, it’s very likely that your customers will go elsewhere. Customers can easily compare prices and feel safe about their purchases because many retailers offer low-cost (or free!) shipping and money-back guarantees. You need to give customers strong reasons to stay with your company, and the best way to do so is to make sure you treat them as valued customers.
Competition is growing more fierce by the day. You have to fight hard for the attention of your audience, deal with rising ad costs, and go up against competitors that actually know what they’re doing. To stand out among the competition, you need to make sure your company develops a strong reputation in the marketplace for high-quality products/services and outstanding customer support.
How B2C companies can execute a B2C customer-centric marketing strategy
It’s easy to see that a customer-centric marketing approach is crucial. However, you’ll want some pointers on how to actually execute a customer-centric B2C marketing strategy for your company. Here are nine tips that you can use:
1. Start with segmentation
The easiest way to start the process is to start segmenting your customers. You can segment by the types of products they’ve purchased, the average purchase value, and their demographics, to get things going. You’ll also want to pay attention to your different audiences.
Many businesses target multiple audiences but market to them in the same manner. To maximize sales, you need to create marketing campaigns that are based on the types of products customers buy, the kind of customer they are, and what audience group they belong to.
2. Invest in hyper-personalization
There are now many marketing automation platforms that allow you to hyper personalize your marketing campaigns. These platforms can track the products/services users have viewed, the content they’ve consumed, the links they’ve clicked on, and more. Because you can track their behavior, you can create behavior-based campaigns and send hyper-targeted promotions.
Some marketing automation platforms also use machine learning to personalize the entire experience and automatically send out marketing campaigns based on customer actions.
3. Manage the customer lifecycle better
Customer lifecycle management is the process of mapping out the various stages that customers go through so that companies can guide their journey. This can mean anything from putting the right kind of educational content in front of new customers, offering exclusive offers midway through a customer’s journey, and attempting to extend the life of a customer when they’re about to churn.
Mapping out a strategy for every stage is far from easy, but it is the most optimal way to engage customers so that you can maximize profits over their life cycle.
4. Create targeted content
A common mistake that many B2C companies make is producing content that they think their customers want to consume without doing the research beforehand. Instead of wasting time and money on producing content your audience won’t be interested in, dig deep into researching what customers actually want to read, listen to, and watch.
Start by looking at your competitors and seeing which topics, angles, and formats are producing results. Then use those ideas for your own content production and see which ones are a hit with your customers. You’ll start to generate solid data that you can use to create content your customers want and thus enhance the customer relationship.
5. Create customer loyalty programs
One of the best ways to let your customers know that you value them is to create a customer loyalty program. Very few B2C companies have loyalty programs, and if they do have one, the rewards tend to be unattractive. By offering strong incentives for your customers, they’ll be more inclined to stay loyal to your company and continue making purchases. Loyalty programs should also go beyond rewards-based systems. They should include surprise bonuses, gifts, and exclusive offers for your most valuable customers.
6. Focus on brand and community building
You need a strong and unique brand identity if you want to create a connection with your customers. Your brand should have unique values and benefits that make customers want to continue doing business with you. It’s also a great idea to build a community around your brand.
This can be easily done with social media platforms, online forums, community blogs, and membership sites. By building a community around your brand, you’ll be able to increase customer engagement by allowing your customers, fans, and ambassadors to interact with each other and stay connected with your brand values.
7. Increase customer support options
Customer support is obviously an important part of executing a customer-centric B2C marketing strategy. To ensure that it’s easy for customers to resolve issues, you’ll need to optimize your customer support.
This can be done by providing options like live chat, social media customer support, knowledge boards, video tutorials, SMS, chatbots, forums, FAQ pages, and even dedicated apps. More customers today are favoring self-service options and live chat as they believe these solutions are a faster, less personal, and more convenient way to get the service they need.
8. Make testing a big part of everything you do
Testing is a given in any marketing campaign. But if you really want to learn what your customers want, you need to take testing to a high level. This means that you’ll have to test social media campaigns, email marketing campaigns, blog posts, videos, sales pages, articles, web designs, and more.
You need to figure out which approaches work best at every point in the customer interaction. Tests should be run on a regular basis to get the most benefits. And as you gain valuable data, you’ll be able to make better marketing decisions all across the board.
9. Design an outstanding customer experience
Finally, you want to make sure you design an outstanding customer experience from the very beginning. For example, you can start out by offering advice on how to best use your product after a purchase is made. You can preemptively send resources for getting in touch with customer support and offering solutions to issues customers may face before any issues even occur.
You can send a voicemail after a sale is made to thank customers for their business while offering a one-time discount for a future purchase. The idea here is to focus on impressing customers at every touchpoint and create a one of a kind experience.
To sum up, adopting a customer-centric B2C marketing strategy has become more important than ever. It can be challenging for a company to change their approach if they’ve been focusing on mass marketing strategies. But by following these tips, you’ll start coming up with some great ideas on how to build a customer-centric strategy and get a sense of how to execute the strategy properly.
Lukas Sitar is the SEO and Inbound Marketing Specialist contracted with Exponea – Customer Data Platform, where he prepares the B2B SEO content strategy. Lukas’ main focus is to increase the number of sales-qualified leads generated from organic traffic, which he achieves by improving the UX, technical and on-page SEO aspects of Exponea’s website. His passion is psychology and behavioural economics and he is currently developing his skills in these areas.