As per a Walker study, in the year 2020, 86% of customers will pay more for a better customer experience. It will overtake product and price.
The year 2020 is only four years away. It doesn’t give you much time to get your ducks in a row.
But there is good news, and it’s this: the majority of companies don’t “get customer experience” now and will not get it in 2020 either. Those that do master the art will be the leaders of the pack, as they are now.
To start preparing for 2020, here are five ideas that will help attract more customers by offering value on top of your primary offerings.
#1: Transitional education
Some niches, like Internet marketing and search engine optimization, require a substantial amount of client education, which is time consuming and resource heavy for the company. And it’s usually an unexpected part of the service or product; it’s cost to the company not factored into the books.
Design Pickle, for instance, offers a flat rate per month for an unlimited amount of graphic design work (excluding logos). Their client base consists mostly of small business owners and solopreneurs who need graphic design work done, but they don’t fully understand the value of it. As a result, Design Pickle found that once their clients received their initial designs, they would cancel their monthly subscription.
The company needed a way to educate their clients and help them succeed in their marketing initiatives.
Pickle University was born as a way to provide transitional education.
Transitional education helps secure more business in the long-term as clients start understanding the real value you provide, so not only does it benefit your clients, but it also benefits your business, as well as broadening your offerings. As a small business, you don’t have time to waffle, and brandable LMS websites like Kajabi are ideal, as it gives you a customizable website to run your courses on, landing pages to drive traffic to, and email marketing software, an all in one tool.
#2: Education based marketing
Gone are the days of selling-based marketing. It is now useless and only serves to alienate prospects. On the Internet especially, where people can’t see you face to face and as a result, there is no trust or credibility, education based marketing allows your business to provide value while building credibility.
Marketing Donut reports that 63% of the people who ask for information about your company today will not buy for at least another three months, and of those, 20% will take more than a year to buy.
It is for this reason that email marketing is essential: when your email marketing strategy is education-based, you’ll build trust and credibility as you go, ensuring that when the prospect is ready to buy, it will be your company at the forefront of his or her mind.
What this means, is that you need a very fine understanding of your target audience, so that you know what questions they’re asking, and provide the answers via the content on your website.
Educational marketing has to be about a message that solves a problem for your audience. The bounce rate of your website will provide an indication of whether you’re getting it right or not. The higher the bounce rate, the more your content needs to improve from a value point of view.
#3: Memorable convenience
Imagine if your dentist offered a child minding service while you had that root canal done? Or how about if your hairdresser met you with a glass of champagne, and arranged for your car to be washed while you had your hair colored?
When you offer complimentary services attached to your primary offerings, you will attract more customers just because of the convenience, and the experience.
Just as in the case of educational marketing, the key here is knowing your customers well and then based on their needs, adding convenience into the mix. The convenience or experience has to be of value to your target audience.
For instance, you know that most people who shop at malls during weekdays are either off duty, on holiday, pensioners, stay-at-home moms, or business owners. If a mall wanted to provide a memorable convenience, it would need to find out who the majority of their shoppers are during the week, and then add convenience based on those people’s needs.
So if they found that the majority of people shopping at their mall on weekdays were moms, they could add child minding as a convenience.
Oscar, operating solely from New York, uses technology to speak “plain English” to their customers, making it easy for people to get insurance quotes:
Had this company not understood it’s target audience, they would never have come up with such innovative technology that is a sure-fire way of attracting more customers.
#4: Email segmentation, scoring & tagging
Your subscriber’s inbox is a hotbed of activity, with scores of other people’s emails vying for his or her attention. How are you going to stand out, so that you conquer the barriers to getting your email opened?
Well, the highest open rates are usually for the very first email sent after the person has subscribed to something. It is with that email that you need to make a memorable impression, so that your prospect will a) remember you, and b) want to open more emails they receive from you.
To make your emails more value-add and memorable, they have to be relevant to the recipient, and this is what segmentation does: it groups people who have the same interests, together, so that they only receive content that is pertinent to them.
Scoring and tagging helps track their activity so that you learn their habits and preferences, making your emails that much more relevant. And likely to be opened, read and clicked through.
#5: Train your people
There are two areas in which your staff should be trained: those who are service facing should be empowered not only to deal well with customers, but to give them a service experience they’ll never forget, so that your brand becomes gossip-able. Word of mouth advertising is the most powerful form of advertising.
The second area is equipping staff with knowledge so that they become the expert advisor in the mind of your customer. More on this later.
Back to service… The Internet offers a host of stories about exceptional customer service, and every story is usually about a person who took the initiative and provided an outstanding experience, worthy to be mentioned in a blog post. Now I’m not saying you should aim to get mentioned on other blogs, but you should empower your people to put themselves in your customer’s shoes and always think about ways of delighting customers.
As for training your people to be experts…when your staff are known as experts, your brand becomes credible and trustworthy, and your company becomes the go-to in your niche.
By the year 2020, the customer service experience will overtake price and product.
Get ready to rock your prospects with these five ideas, that add value-based marketing:
- Provide online courses to help your customer’s business, while increasing your offerings and securing their business in the future.
- Address their problem in the content of your website.
- Think of ways to bring your customers convenience and an exceptional experience.
- Group subscribers together based on their interests and habits.
- Train staff to excel in nurturing relationships and equip them with knowledge to make them “go-to” experts.