Gone are the days of paper, radio and TV ads, as much as they’re still kicking to stay alive. We are living in the age of Internet and mobile technologies. Bloomberg reports that an average American spends more time on their phone than they do watching TV. Not just that, but there is also a huge difference in proportion between the time people spend on their mobile devices and the money spent on ads targeted for mobile. That huge difference is roughly 25B USD.
% of Time Spent in Media vs. % of Advertising Spending, USA 2014
According to this data, just by engaging in Internet and mobile marketing you are already ahead of the game. Many haven’t embraced the digital age yet, but you should.
This guide will assist you with implementing and managing major online marketing strategies. They are all unique and useful and will help you make strides in expanding your business. Goals such as creating brand awareness, getting more traffic for your website and physical/or online store, getting more leads and increasing sales, having satisfied and returning customers are all achievable with the right marketing strategy.
So, without further ado, let’s dive into it.
Customer as the Center of Your Marketing Efforts

I’ll just go right ahead and say it: Customers are what keeps your business going. Sure, customers might not have been on the forefront of your mind when you began your business, but they should be now. Are you paying enough attention to them?

Nowadays, customers do not want to be your next pitch (and, believe me, they know when you’re trying to sell them something). They need to feel that you care about them and their needs, and that you want to help them improve their lives or solve their problems. This is why it is paramount that genuine human-to-human connections are at the center of your marketing.

Don’t be surprised. That very same desire for connection is what drives most of our actions in life. It is an intrinsic part of our nature, so why shouldn’t it guide your marketing efforts as well? But before you can go ahead with your marketing strategy, you need to ask yourself: do I know who my customers are and what they want? How can my company or my product help them? What problem can I help solve? By knowing this, you will be fulfilling your customers’ needs and giving them what they want, thus creating a success loop in which your business grows and you gain satisfied clients. Besides that, with some work, you will learn more about your business and what makes your product special. The insight will be very valuable later on when you are figuring out your marketing strategy.

THE IDEAL CLIENT

If you are someone who is just starting a business, or you are working for a company that is just starting their marketing campaign, then you might not have all of these customer insights at your disposal. You can’t know what people think about your product if only a few people probably even know you’re selling one. In a way this is a good thing. You have the freedom to focus on the exact type of people you want to market and sell to.

On the other hand, be careful you don’t fall into the trap of trying to please everyone. Focus on a narrow niche in the beginning. Don’t worry, you can expand later, but for now you need to find the customers that are a perfect fit for your business. Does that seem overwhelming? Don’t let it be. I will show you an easy and efficient way to define your ideal clientele and how to use that in your marketing efforts. To do this, we are going to create a customer profile. It will describe an ideal customer – the one who would buy your product as soon as they found out about it. Let’s get started.

1.Like I said before, start with the niche you want to reach. Is it soccer moms? Young urban professionals? College students? Baristas? Circus jugglers? It can be anything, and since nobody knows your business better than you do, it’s up to you to make this call.
2. Whichever niche you’ve picked, try to not make assumptions, but focus on facts and actual data. And more importantly, don’t forget to ask your customers questions. Ask them about their jobs, education, family status, or anything else you think is important to figure them out.
3.On the basis of the gathered data, you need to do your best to actually understand your customer. What is their purchasing power? How did they hear about you? What made them trust you? What problem does your company solve for them? How long is their buying process? What concerns did they have while deciding? All of these questions will help you better understand not only your clients, but your company as well. Try to think of some on your own. What could you ask your customers to figure out their needs?
4. Doing this customer research is only half the work. The question is what to do with all the information that you’ve gathered. Now, you need to create a customer persona that closely represents the majority of your customers or the market segment you want to reach. This will be your reference for all of your future marketing decisions. Go all out, you can even give them a name and assign them a photo so you have a clear reference point.
5. As you’re creating this customer profile, remember that you always want to maintain an individualistic approach, even if you are dealing with a large group of people.
Good Customer Experience = Good Customer Conversion

I won’t pretend that I have invented something new when I say that ensuring your customers receive an amazing customer service will result in equally amazing business results for you. We live in the time when the customer is always right. Even when they’re wrong. Even when you’ve done everything right. So, better make sure your customers like you. And I don’t mean your product. They need to like your company, your website, your newsletter font, and Joe from the A/V department who sold them their last TV.

Pretty much every single interaction they have with your company – from the moment they find out about you – should be positive and meaningful.

And remember, your relationship with the customer doesn’t end at the point of sale. Make sure that you follow up and that your customers know that your support is still available to them. Their use of the product should be equally, if not more, enjoyable than the buying process. This is crucial because it will increase your chances of customer retention, which I want to talk about next.

Satisfied Customers Attract More Customers

Did you know there is a way you could spend less time and effort on customer retention, but bring in double the revenue? A recent study by Sweet Tooth showed that most e-commerce businesses invest 81% of their budget into acquisition marketing, which brings in approximately 59% of total revenue, while only investing 19% of their budget into retention marketing, which brings them a staggering 41% of total revenue. According to Harvard Business review, a mere 5% increase in customer retention can lead to a 95% increase in revenue. Here is a helpful graph to illustrate my point:

The numbers speak for themselves. You need to invest in long-term relationships with your customers (of course, under the condition that you have actually acquired some clients first). There are many things you can do to retain customers, make them come back for more, and better still, tell their friends about you, bringing you even more business. Besides having a superb customer service, here are some useful tools/techniques:

  • Discounts on future purchases
  • Loyalty rewards programs
  • Support system (help desk, tech support, live chat, email, telephone)
  • Personalized offers based on their previous shopping or wish lists
  • Re-engaging emails
  • Special packages

In the end I want to touch upon two things: customer acquisition cost (CAC) and lifetime value of a customer (LTV). CAC will consist of all of your spending (marketing and otherwise) up to the point of sale. Everything that the customer spends at the point of sale and later is purely revenue. You want your CAC to be as low as possible, while maintaining LTV as high as possible. And remember, CAC is an investment, while LTV is a long-term profit.