Engaging customers is crucial to driving sales, and it’s much more cost effective to get repeat purchases from existing customers than acquiring new ones. Customer relationship management (CRM) is a well established process for doing this. But the customer lifecycle actually starts when prospects make the very first contact, which doesn’t always involve them becoming a ‘customer’ straight away.
That’s why DEPT® encourages brands to take an ‘always on’ approach to lifecycle marketing, helping them to build relationships through a series of integrated communications across multiple channels.
Lifecycle marketing is all about extending customer lifetime value through relevant, timely and personalised communications across numerous channels. Each communication is a component part of a larger vision that builds and contributes to the broader strategic goals of your business and helps to build relationships with your customers at every stage in their journey.
But in today’s digital reality, many CMOs are underprepared to deliver effective, multi-channel retention and loyalty programmes like this. That’s where it can be helpful to work with a specialist lifecycle marketing and CRM agency like DEPT®.
Developing a CRM strategy
Your CRM strategy will sit at the heart of your lifecycle marketing game plan. The first step in developing this is to understand your current state and gain stakeholder alignment in order to define the core business requirements and objectives of your new approach. At this stage, it’s also essential to conduct an in-depth review of the competitor landscape to identify gaps and areas of opportunity.
Following this, we help clients to conduct a lifecycle mapping audit to understand the existing customer journey, determine how we want it to look in the future and identify the blockers to getting there.
Based on these outputs, we can create customer journey maps to define who to target, with what messages and when (on channels not exclusive to email) and develop detailed nurture streams aligned to your objectives; as well as wireframes that will serve as visual outlines for articulating the messages, hierarchies, audience, cadence and goals of each piece of communication.
Lifecycle marketing implementaton
Once your direction of travel (goals and objectives) has been defined and the path paved (through audits, customer journey maps, nurture streams and wireframes), attention can be turned to the implementation of your lifecycle marketing strategy.
At DEPT®, we take these insights and build an on-brand, best-in-class creative and content guide to use across non-transactional communications. It’s important to consider everything from creative and tone of voice to layout and accessibility to ensure consistency and efficacy across every single communication.
With a comprehensive creative and content guide in place, it’s time for activation; and our expertise in marketing automation underpins technical delivery, including Lightspeed (part of Ada by DEPT®, our suite of proprietary martech tools) to supercharge production and engage customers onsite, through CRM and on social channels at rapid speeds.
This is the exact approach we took to take eBay’s lifecycle marketing strategy to the next level, which now sees us deliver more than 200 campaigns per month across the online reselling giant’s digital channels.
We gained a deep understanding of the different customer journey paths that their platform provides. Through personalised communications that speak directly to specific customer types like regular buyers, sporadic sellers, passionate collectors, or alternate makers, we have enabled eBay to forge an intimate connection with each audience group to drive revenue, retention and brand loyalty.
Working with DEPT®
It’s never been more important to develop a lifecycle marketing and CRM strategy to maximise return from your owned channels.
Understanding your audiences and when and how you should best talk to them is key. Our expertise brings all of these elements together in a structured approach. This helps you to see the bigger picture, while breaking it down into actionable steps to deliver results.
As a specialist lifecycle marketing and CRM agency, DEPT® can advise you at every stage; from setting the strategy and defining your audience all the way to content creation, campaign management and continual optimisation. Get in touch today.
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