“Customer-centric” is a value that gets tossed around a lot, but have you ever thought about how to actually structure your company around the needs of your customers? Steve Jobs is someone who knows a thing or two about growing a successful business, and he does a great job summarizing his approach to being customer-centric.
“Get closer than ever to your customers. So close that you tell them what they need well before they realize it themselves,” said Jobs. This deeper level of customer understanding and communication can be achieved through marketing and client success alignment.
Customer retention is one of the primary benefits of aligning marketing and client success. The key to retention is actively working to retain customers at all stages in their customer lifecycle journey so that you are retaining them before they ever want to leave. Retaining customers with this mindset means developing customer-centric marketing to provide value that results in satisfied advocates of your business.
Increased customer retention is a win-win for both client success and marketing. The Bain Capability Center’s research found that acquiring a new customer can costs 6 to 7 times more than efforts spent on customer service and customer retention. To ensure customer retention, it’s important to go above and beyond to delight and foster these positive relationships.
As we’ve mentioned in a previous blog, branding is what consumers say about your brand, NOT what you say about your brand. When you are retaining and fostering happy customers for life, you are gaining valuable brand advocates. The power of advocacy of these brand advocates is a growing influencer because your prospects, customers and former customers are now all connected through the Internet. This interconnectivity makes it more important than ever before to be developing brand advocates that can attract new leads through social media and online reviews.
Marketing and client success alignment is not only important with retaining customers, but impacts every stage of the customer lifecycle-
- Initially, marketing can target the right customers for your product or service by communicating well with client success about who their most successful customers are.
- Prospects and leads are exposed to increased social proof from advocates that encourage them to engage with your brand or reinforces their decision to buy.
- When you’re closing the deal on new customers both marketing and client success should be introduced in order to reach out with personal touches and client engagement throughout their experience with your company.
- During onboarding, marketing and client success can provide education and training materials on industry best practices and best practices of current customers to help the client be more successful.
- New customers at the final stages of their implementation and onboarding can benefit from celebrating wins, building their own success stories, and tailored marketing campaigns to deliver more value. It’s important at this “honeymoon” stage with your company to “find the smoke before it becomes a fire” and embrace Steve Jobs’ advice of knowing the customer’s experience and what can give them added value before they even acknowledge it.
- Customers can be turned into advocates and customers for life when they are consistently feeling appreciated and are on a nurturing track that gives them value. This can create new revenue streams as well through up-sell opportunities that marketing and client success can promote together.
Customers across all stages will pay for what they need, and then stop paying when there is no added value. Marketing and client success alignment allows you to continually add value across all clients and stages through messaging that is customer-centric and in-tuned to the needs of your customers.