For many organizations, the customer lifecycle is limited to purchasing only, when the reality is much more complex. And it is this complexity that makes it possible to identify various opportunities which, if exploited, will increase the chances of repeating the cycle consistently. Therefore, knowing and leveraging the stages of the customer lifecycle should be a goal of any organization. Jorge Zuiga Blanco, entrepreneur and sales expert from Costa Rica, explains the different stages of the sales cycle and how to make them work best.
The customer sales lifecycle consists of stages or phases that describe a customer’s relationship with a business. They are divided into six sections, knowledge, acquisition, conversion, growth, retention and reactivation. Knowledge, also known as notoriety, is a potential customer’s first contact with the brand. While it sounds simple, it’s a challenge for start-ups, so they need to rely on multi-channel actions to generate this encounter. Traditional advertising, blogging, email marketing, and content marketing will be some strategies to implement in this first phase.
In the acquisition phase of the customer lifecycle, the company should promote actions that invite testing of the product or service. Here, the communication effort is greater, and the message must be more impactful, emphasizing its added value. One of the most common strategies in this phase is free trials.
In the conversion phase, the customer already knows the product, but has not yet bought it, the actions therefore aim to sell, either under the traditional paradigm (salesman in physical store or telemarketing), or under a digital scheme (landing pages, actions in social networks, etc.)
The next step is growth. Explains Zuiga, In this phase of the customer lifecycle, the sale has already been finalized. From now on, actions aim to deepen the relationship with the customer to better understand his needs. Segmentation is essential in this phase to develop strategies adapted to the needs of each client, and to offer products and services designed for them.
For many businesses, the customer lifecycle ends with loyalty. Your needs have already been met, so you stop shopping. Or you have found a new alternative that offers more value to your purchase and you leave the relationship with the brand.
To prevent this from happening, it is essential to work on identifying the customer with the brand beyond a business transaction. Loyalty programs and exclusive promotions are a few strategies at this point.
The objective of the reactivation phase is to recover those who were formerly customers of the company. To achieve this, it is essential to understand the reasons why they have stopped buying. From there, strategies can be generated that improve the previous conditions so that they are attractive to the client in the present.
It is possible to extend its life cycle and keep it longer, with four strategies to achieve this goal. The first is to always be present. Said Zuiga, Your goal is to always be on the consumer’s mind. Maybe he won’t buy from you today, but when he needs a product, he’ll go to the last one he had in mind, no matter how happy he is with yours.
Always being there is important, but it is also important to know what customers want; Listen. If you are able to detect their needs and desires, you will be able to approach the customer in the most successful way possible, which can bring many other benefits beyond the purchase: loyalty and love at first sight.
As we have seen before, getting new customers costs a lot more than keeping existing customers. This is why you, as an organization, are interested in creating strong connections that later can turn into sales. Make your customers feel special by personalizing your communications or giving them the opportunity for a new product first, for example.
Finally, a good way to be present, to listen and to create strong links is through loyalty programs. Thank your customers for purchasing from you and reward them for their loyalty with promotions and access to exclusives. This will cause, even more, a feeling of belonging and that they want to continue to choose you. You have to make them feel like an exclusive customer. The key is to create added value at all times.
About Jorge Zuiga Blanco
Jorge Zuiga Blanco is a leading e-commerce expert who has provided his services to growing organizations around the world. He has diverse industry experience to his credit, which gives him the ability to relate and contribute to business owners in a variety of markets. He has over 20 years of experience in the e-commerce industry and, for the past nine years, has dedicated his expertise and knowledge to helping executives and managers grow their businesses.
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