How to use content marketing for customer retention & loyalty
Learn how to use content marketing to connect with your current customer base, build loyalty, and improve customer retention.
As marketers, we sometimes get so caught up in attracting new customers that we lose sight of what’s right in front of us – an existing customer base that’s already interested in our products and services.
In reality, we should be focused on retaining the customers we do have.
But how do you build out a content marketing strategy that will help you connect with those customers on a deeper level?
Publish High-Quality Content Consistently
Your website should be a living, breathing entity. Every update you make to your site plays a role in its interaction with both search engines and customers.
The more new content you offer, the more value you add to your users’ experience, which in turn, will keep them coming back for more.
Luckily, frequent content updates don’t necessarily have to come in the form of blog posts and newsletters.
Feel free to diversify your content offerings with FAQs, product demos, how-to guides, vlogs, and podcasts.
Of course, publishing content on an ongoing basis is easier said than done. Here are a few strategies to consider if you want to keep your content fresh and up-to-date:
- Set aside time each week to create some content. Adhering to a schedule might make all the difference.
- Brainstorm 10-20 topics at a time so that you can begin writing without having to brainstorm new topics every time you want to release another piece of content.
- Whenever possible, you should always repurpose your content into other popular formats. Break down statistics, showcase unexpected findings, and recap your research in newsletters and videos. That way, you’ll be able to make one asset stretch a long way.
Leverage Customer Intelligence
Customer data provides information about a customer’s activity that took place at a specific time and touchpoint. Customer intelligence takes it one step further. These are the insights that come from gathering and analyzing customer data across every part of the customer journey.
To start this process, you’ll want to build out customer personas to segment groups. Next, analyze each group.
User analytics provide a constant stream of data that guides your content marketing. Descriptive, interactive, behavioral, and attitudinal data, in particular, will help you quantify, classify, categorize, and track the customer experience.
Every touchpoint offers companies an opportunity to better understand consumer needs and deliver a more personalized experience.
Create A Customer Communication Calendar
Even if your customers aren’t relaying their feedback to you, your content marketing team should be proactive in reaching out to them directly.
Think about building a communication calendar to better manage customer engagement opportunities to upsell and cross-sell.
The core concept of a communication calendar is fairly simple – it’s a chart that keeps track of customer communication. It tells you the last time a customer contacted you and notifies you when they haven’t interacted with your brand.
Having this information handy makes it easy to launch promotions and customer service features that remove obstacles long before customers even know they’re there.
Social Media Posts To Encourage Community Building
Social media posts make for excellent retention content.
From quick tips and videos to new products and feature releases, social media is a resource that can be used to connect with customers and keep them engaged.
Relationships are a two-way street, which is why brands need to both listen and communicate with their audience to nurture a meaningful relationship.
This can be achieved by running contests, asking direct questions, conducting surveys, and sharing survey results.
Additionally, consider utilizing other community-building techniques via groups and forum-like channels like Facebook Groups, Reddit, Discord, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
Focus On The Customer Lifecycle
In the context of content marketing, it’s important to attract and retain the customer well beyond the initial impulse purchase.
That’s why it’s important to build content around each stage of the buyer journey.
For a holistic editorial plan, here are some of the key methods of communication to consider:
- Public Relations.
- Social Media Marketing.
- Email Marketing.
- Search Marketing.
- Social Media.
- Product/Service Reviews.
- Ecommerce Marketing.
- Social Media.
- Live Chat.
- Email Marketing.
- Search Marketing.
- Email Newsletters.
- Forum on Social Network.
Help + Resource Center + Customer Feedback
Asking for feedback is one of the best ways to keep your community at the heart of everything you do.
After all, nothing resonates with customers like compelling stories about people like themselves who faced and solved similar – if not identical – problems.
If you want to make your customers feel heard, show them that you care about them, not their business.
It’s also a good idea to turn your product or service into an authentic brand story. This will make it more engaging and relatable.
To maximize the success of your brand story, you’ll need to address your customers’ pain points. Share social proof in the form of testimonials, case studies, and press mentions.
Even hosting events like webinars and online workshops for consumers can help prove expertise and strengthen credibility.
Send Engaging Onboarding Emails
The first time someone uses your product or service is a very important milestone in the customer journey.
A lot of attention to detail goes into determining how to onboard customers.
Keep in mind that your customers’ needs can change as soon as they start to use your product or service.
To stay ahead of the curve, be proactive and incorporate images, links, animations, and discounts into each email. Adapt your offerings whenever applicable.
The onboarding process occurs at the beginning of the journey. It lays the groundwork for the relationship with your customers.
Be Everywhere Your Customers Are
There’s no getting around it. Businesses of all stripes are heading full-throttle towards digital.
However, your customers are already there. They are discovering products on social media and leaving reviews on their phones.
From YouTube to LinkedIn, you need to aim for omnipresence to get the most out of your marketing dollars.
The more mediums you broadcast your message through, the higher your chances of catching the attention of your target audience and turning them into repeat customers.
Personalize, Personalize, Personalize
The larger your company is, the harder it is to portray your brand as genuine.
No customer journey is the same. Providing a customized experience can help you engage with your audience on a more personal level.
You can address customers by their first name in an email, segment contact lists, and reply to comments on social media.
Implement Improvements Fast And Announce Those Changes With Content
Responding to customer feedback in a timely manner is going to grow your brand in several ways.
First, you’re letting your customers know that you understand their pain points. Simply sharing empathy will go a long way with customer retention.
Second, you come off as a company that actively listens to its target audience and is just as receptive to positive comments as you are of critical ones.
Third, you position yourself as a brand that takes action.
Final Thoughts On Content Marketing
Remember – your customers always have the option to jump ship.
Don’t let them switch to your competitors.
Build trust with your audience by creating and publishing quality content across all channels. Over time, you’ll amass a following of brand loyalists who will stick with your company for the long haul.
And you have your content marketing strategy to thank for that.
by John Lincoln