SPANDA Framework Step 4: “Nurture” To Create Lasting Relationships

You can attract customers from various sources, like opt-in forms on your website, sales prospecting, Email campaigns, and many more. But just because someone has given you his/her contact information does not mean that person is willing to give you his/her money. Over 96% of the visitors who come to a brand’s website aren’t ready to buy. 

Hence, it becomes increasingly essential for you to nurture your customers to foster quality relationships with them, earn their trust and loyalty, and guide them through the conversion process. 

But businesses seldom nurture their customers beyond their initial purchases. As per statistics, the number is as low as 29%. If you have managed to convert your customers, know that your job isn’t over. Not unless you want to lose them, that is. 

We, at Cusp Services, believe that only a funnel of meaningful conversations can lead to a funnel of incredible sales opportunities. Our approach focuses on solving for the customers and building lasting relationships that enable them to succeed, and not blindly targeting or selling them. 

While we help you initiate customer connections with inbound marketing, we leverage outbound sales and marketing tactics to help you nurture those relationships, personalize conversations with the customers, and facilitate their buying journey. Let us look at how the best sales consulting for startups in India can help you achieve this.

Why Nurture Your Customers?

Customer nurturing is a low-risk, high-reward strategy in terms of cost-efficiency and long-term revenue generation. Done right, customer nurturing can enable you to-

  • create loyal customers that can become your greatest brand ambassadors to create a positive brand influence,
  • reduce customer churn,
  • increase your customer engagement and retention,
  • improve customer lifetime value,
  • keep your brand on their top-of-mind, 
  • strengthen your brand against the competition, and
  • increase sales, conversion rates, and profitability.

How Are Outbound Tactics Different from Inbound Ones?

While inbound marketing focuses on building rapport and earning the audience’s attention, the outbound methodology pushes the prospects through a brand’s sales process regardless of their buyer journey.

Inbound efforts are educational and engaging, request permission for customer contact, and focus on delivering relevant and quality content (blogs, social media, opt-in Emails, etc.). Whereas outbound efforts focus more on selling and proactively reaching out to the customers to show them your message. They are one-way, interruptive, more expensive, and consist of tactics like billboards, display ads, telemarketer scripts, cold Email outreach, TV ads, etc.

The latter might sound like an unappealing and pushy marketing approach, which it is to some extent. But once you have understood and segmented your target market, both inbound and outbound nurturing can effectively work together to deliver optimal results.

Nurturing Customers the Right Way

If you solely focus on attracting customers, you’ll soon be overwhelmed with one-time customers. To accelerate your sales and business growth, you need to shift your focus from attraction to retention and nurture your relationships with existing customers. 

If you are PLG ( Product led sales growth) company, here are a few ways you can do so:

Identify your dormant users based on their purchasing habits and user behaviors. You must check their history, like past visits to your website and purchases. Besides that, see how much they have engaged with your brand lately by checking their email opens, website visits, clicks, newsletter subscriptions, callback requests, etc., depending upon your product buying cycle.

You can use analytics tools like Google Analytics to track such information effectively. Then, you can decide what kind of content keeps your customers more engaged with your brand and know what’s irrelevant to them. Make sure the content is fresh and new, as making them repetitive can harm your nurturing and marketing strategies.

Consider putting your products as the centerpiece of your content and continue making your customers aware of any new features and updates in a customer-centric way. You can even share your brand story with them, as customers are generally more likely to buy from brands having a compelling backstory, give them repeat business, and share that story with others. 

One of the most important strategies for nurturing customers is being attentive during interactions with them, be it emails, questionnaires, sign-up information, or face-to-face meetings. You must document whatever vital information you can get about the customers from those interactions. This can be incredibly helpful for tailoring your communication and offerings to them and establishing stronger and more strategic customer relationships. 

If you are a SLG (Sales led growth) company, we would highly recommend using the “Consultative Selling framework” that we have spoken and elaborated in detail in another blog. You’ll find that in the Insights section. 

Customers are always eager to express their opinions (both positive and negative) about your products. Leverage this opportunity to improve your offerings by asking for their feedback (thoughts, experiences, suggestions, etc.). You can do so through surveys, website forms, emails, or other collection platforms. 

This not only helps you improve your brand offerings but also opens the door for future interactions. Thus, they know that they are being heard and valued. Customers having an emotional connection with a brand have a 306% higher lifetime value than other satisfied customers. 

To establish this connection, you even celebrate significant dates like customer birthdays, the anniversaries of them joining your brand or signing up for your newsletter, or other special dates that are significant to your brand. This can allow you to touch base with your customers, prompt them to visit your website, and funnel them back into your sales channel.

Things to Remember

Here are some other things to keep in mind to build and improve customer relationships and make them last:

If a customer calls for support and must wait for a few days/weeks for the resolution, call back multiple times and/or put his/her work on hold, then it will severely harm your relationship with that person. Furthermore, the longer they have to wait for the resolution, the more impatient they’ll grow, and the worse their experience will be. 

Over 73% of customers feel that valuing their time is the most important thing for a brand to do while delivering a service/ product. Hence, ensure a seamless experience, ease-of-use, and intuitive design to value their time. Focus on delivering immediate and real-time support to them. You can even leverage dedicated customer support groups that focus on one specific product/service so the audience can effectively resolve their queries on the first attempt.

You must offer gratitude to your customers for doing business with you to make them feel appreciated and strengthen your bonds with them. Don’t only contact them when you need to sell something. Reward loyal customers by giving them a thoughtful gift, a handwritten note, and/or incentives like-

  • freebies,
  • discounts,
  • special offers/buying opportunities,
  • premium services only available to loyal audiences,
  • exclusive rewards.

Giving them a sneak peek into your new product and its features can also be beneficial. Being the first to know about new and exciting changes in your brand offerings helps create a sense of loyalty and belongingness among them and turn them into your brand ambassadors. It is also a great way to start some marketing buzz around your offerings. You must also be patient and express your empathy and consideration when they are facing issues with your product/ service. 

Use CRM tools like Salesforce and Hubspot to better understand your customers, build their detailed profiles, anticipate their interests and needs, and analyze their behaviors. This will help you identify your most promising and profitable customers to be targeted more in the future.

Lastly, keep engaging with your customers in some way. Do not completely stop engaging after the completion of their customer lifecycles. Keep the communication channels open by sharing  new offers, company updates, industry trends, or simple follow-up emails to ensure upselling or cross-selling. 

You can also remind them about the product features that you see they’re not utilizing. This is essential for a more genuine and personal communication that leads to increased customer retention, referrals, word-of-mouth, and future sales.

Now that you have learned to deliver value to your audience and nurture your relationships with them, it is time to go beyond simply meeting their expectations. You must give them unexpected delight, which will force them to become loyal brand ambassadors and spread the word. For that, you will need a personalized customer success team. 

Reach out to the best sales consulting in India to learn more about how you can define an effective value stream and success framework for improved customer experience and delivery excellence.

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