Keeping your customers delighted, engaged, and even raving about you is easier than you think.
I have a dear colleague who can get a bit of snark on. She has a great sense of humor so I enjoy her candor and the snark.
Recently Heather wrote about Peloton. I only knew the name casually in passing until… surprise of surprise…they started airing on the news in our area… maybe because no one is getting as much exercise as they should be.
There advertisements always this amazing buff-fit person in a fabulous looking condo working intently on their Peloton device. (A very expensive piece of work out gear for the totally committed.)
She loved to mock their gaggy commercials about the super-fit. Then she switched gears and commented on how “laser-targeted” their marketing was. They weren’t trying to appeal to anyone who was not their target market.
Peloton does smart marketing…
Peloton knows what buttons to push for their ideal client, and they do a great job of it. They know how to get their target person to get up off the couch and order a Peleton for $2500 or more. That is brilliant marketing.
Yet they take it a step farther. Peloton focuses on delighting and keeping existing customers engaged…turning them into influencers that promote and sell more devices. Smart company.
Heather admitted that she had signed up with Peleton to have an a virtual at home workout program. No fancy device…the cheapest program that they offered. For what she spent, she didn’t expect much.
They surprised her with a free T-shirt…celebrating her completing 200 workouts. She was so delighted and excited she told several friends and even wrote a marketing article about it. She calculated their delivered cost to be about $3.00 or maybe less.
Considering how many people she told and the number of people who have read her published article, they got excellent ROI.
Any business can do this
Any business can do this. All it takes is thinking outside the proverbial box. I’m in Oregon where we had the most horrific forest fires on record. We still have pockets of the worst air quality in the entire world. Thank goodness, the worst is past.
In the midst of the fire related stress and chaos I received an email from a company I’ve purchased from.
It was absolutely PERFECT timing to the perfect market.
They sent an email titled “To Our West Coast Friends.” It was a “we’re thinking of you” email featuring a well-known landmark in all its pristine glory. No push. Just we’re concerned. We’re thinking of you. We can’t be there but if you need anything here’s 15% off.
It touched me because of it’s tone and non-sales approach. Whether I needed anything right then or not, I will remember who sent me that lovely email at a time much of the state was choking in smoke.
I expected it to be the first of a targeted funnel. and looked forward to see what they would send next. Unfortunately, they went back to pushing sales in the next email. What a missed opportunity. They had set themselves apart with their approach and then slid back into doing exactly what their competitors did.
Ways to delight your customers
If you don’t want to invest in t-shirts, there are lots of other ways. If you don’t have their birthday, send a “you’ve been with us a year” anniversary email or card.
Recognize customers for achieving some sort of milestone on your social media.
Offer a free guide or e-book especially for your valued clients.
Send them an early-bird notice of a special event or something like a black-Friday sale.
There are lots of options out there. It’s a matter of finding what is just right not only for your business, but the clients you want to attract and keep.
New clients only buy 5-20% of the time. Existing clients buy 60-70% of the time. An excellent reason to treat them right and keep them delighted.
Want to read Heather Lloyd-Martin’s full article? You can find it right here.
Want a quick brainstorm on the best way to keep your existing clients delighted? That’s just one of the ways I help my client’s get the edge on their competition. Visit my booking link here.
In marketing, we get the same magnetic push and pull found in magnetic polarity. Whether it’s teaching about polarity or singing a rap song about the push-pull of chemistry, the impact is the same. Energy attracting or pushing apart.
The coronavirus has made teachers incredibly creative. I recently saw a news story on them teaching magnetic polarity virtually.
Push and pull in nature…
With the help of assistants, in this case, the teacher’s children, she placed two large magnets on a table with their horseshoe shapes aligned. The magnetic poles were aligned directly across from each other.
Then she handed her son and daughter each a magnet and had them hold them in the same position. “Now, try to slowly move the magnets directly toward each other,” she guided.
“That’s good, keep the ends pointing toward each other.”
A look of surprise crossed the little boy’s face as he encountered resistance from the magnet as he tried to move it toward his sister’s.
“Excellent, now pause a moment.” She stepped closer and shifted the magnets so the poles were no longer aligned and that one pole from her son’s magnet touched the opposite pole of his sister’s.
“Okay, now what happens when you try to pull apart.”
“It’s stuck!” The little boy said, then he put in some effort and jerked the magnet away from his sisters.
“I did it!” He grinned victoriously as he brandished the magnet in both hands.
“Yes, you did!”
“The resistance you felt was the magnetic polarity being attracted to its opposite force. When the magnets were perfectly aligned they repelled each other. When aligned to an opposite pole, it took your force to move them apart.”
Push and pull marketing
In marketing outbound marketing is also known as push marketing. It takes your product out to where your prospects are to make it easy for them to find. The focus is on your brand or product.
On the opposite side, inbound marketing or pull marketing the focus is on relationships. It relies on prospects that are looking for your product.
Push creates demand by making them aware of your brand and the solutions it offers. Pull offers a way to fulfill that need.
The blend you need in your marketing efforts depends on where you, your brand, or a specific product are at a given moment. I’ve seen this over and over again with clients and former students I was mentoring.
All businesses need a mix of both as they grow and build.
What many don’t realize
For new businesses, you can’t start with pull marketing. First you need to help your “hungry crowd” find you have a solution. That means you need to get your product out there in front of them. You need to use the push.
Once you have created the demand, then you can use the pull to bring them to your website and guide them to their solution.
However, push and pull must be adapted to their times to be relevant and get on people’s radar. Some push techniques don’t work well in a pandemic.
Face-to-face meetings are going virtual. Showrooms are going virtual. Trade shows have one option – go virtual. These are all backbones of push marketing.
Pull has also gotten more challenging due to the sheer volume of companies now focused on online marketing.
Here are 3 techniques to get your push and pull marketing working together
In today’s environment, both push and pull need a client-centric focus. Start with your push and have your pull set up to provide the solution…the sales.
Push marketing a crisis
There are still some classical push – outbound marketing techniques that work. Things like billboards, television, radio, print, direct mail, and eye-catching packaging.
You can also use social media posts and paid ads.
The goal is to get your brand/product out there in front of people so they can learn about it.
I’ve seen clever use of YouTube infographics to create brand awareness.
Interestingly, local television stations are trying to boost local economies by getting the word out to help small businesses. If you’ve been wanting to try some television spots and have the capital, it might be a time to consider it.
The goal of push marketing is to get attention. It should be a disrupter. Something that interrupts the flow of the day. Something that makes people question, “what was that?”
Bingo, you got their attention.
So what are you going to do with that attention?
If you have their attention you need pull-marketing to move them from where they saw you to a place where they can learn more or make a purchase.
The consumer is seeking a product based on need. They saw you and want to know more.
Pull marketing uses your reputation, consumer interest, effective SEO, pay-per-click, blogs, content, and social media. It requires your brand to be in the right place at the right time.
For pull marketing to work effectively, it must be ready and in place at the moment you need it. You can’t wait to start building it out to when you now have traffic or you’ll be missing sales.
Finding the balance
If you already have a good reputation and a known brand, your push marketing will probably shift to push-notifications.
These sort of blur the line between push and pull. They are designed to be used both on your website and via social media marketing to help guide the prospect to finding their answer.
These are designed to engage visitors both on and off your website and keep your product in front of them.
However, there is a catch. You must have their permission in order to send them.
At a time when daily emails have doubled or tripled, people are a bit more protective of giving out their email address. You’ll need to give them a good reason for doing so. It will need to be something of value.
Value might be bonus information. It could be, a guide, a discount, easier tracking for an order, or another type of reward. Whatever you chose it must resonate, be relevant to, and focused on your target customer.
Time to Evaluate
With our changing business environment and more intensive competition, it’s a crucial time for businesses to evaluate how they are using push and pull marketing.
Where is your business now?
What does your outbound and inbound marketing look like?
What modifications or enhancements will make you better able to connect with and engage clients…and convert them into loyal customers?
Need assistance with a quick look or more intensive updates? Message me: email@example.com.
Is what you know about marketing on the web compromised by common myths? It’s highly likely. Especially of concern to brands and marketers is that clicks don’t mean what we think they do.
Back in 1994, a direct response specialist, Ken McCarthy, introduced the idea that if they counted how many clicked on their landing page they would have a good indicator of how well the marketing piece did.
Marketing Myth #1 Clicks equal reads
Over 25 years and lots of major changes later, businesses are still counting clicks as a measurement of success. There’s just one problem…it doesn’t mean they read anything. It only means they clicked on something.
Clicks do NOT mean sales or response to a call-to-action, (CTA). The market became flooded with spam click-bait trying to see how many clicks they could get. Consumers became guinea-pigs. People became frustrated with junk and many quit clicking at all.
Marketers focused so much on clicks they became tied to spam, linkbait, poor design, and trickery. Even so, counting clicks is still the gold standard.
Engagement is the secret
There is something far more important than clicks…It’s what happens between and after a click. What did the person do? Did they go away? Did they share without reading, (happens a lot,) or read just part of the message? Maybe they got distracted. Perhaps there were family or work interruptions.
Our real goal is to keep the visitor on the page and engage them. We want to keep them there and focused. Engagement time is of much higher value than clicking.
Studies actually showed content is what makes the difference.
For an average click, less than 55% stay on the page for more than 15 seconds. If it is an article they engage longer. Only 33% leave in under 15 seconds.
Engagement is higher for actual news… new information, useful, relevant.
The more generic it is the less engagement there is. In the best-case scenario, the engagement levels can be five times higher in the first case…useful news.
For marketing success, the goal should be to keep your audience on your page and returning back again. That takes fresh, content, targeted, and relevant to the viewer.
Social media marketing myths
The same type of myth has also hung around in the social media marketing world. The reality is that shares don’t mean the recipient read it or even that the person who sent it read it.
Chartbeat conducted a study of 10,000 articles shared via social media,. They discovered there was no relationship between sharing and engagement.
Social is just being social, not that you have their attention and engagement. That makes the job a bit tougher.
Native ads look like a page’s editorial content. However, it is paid content designed to promote a product or service.
Fewer people read native ads than other content. In an average article two-thirds of the readers will spend over 15 seconds. In a native ad, this drops to less than one-third. Only 24% of readers scrolled down the page. The normal content rate is 71%. Less than one-third of visitors read more than one-third of the native ad.
Banner ads also get poor positive statistics. In part, this is due to placement. To get optimum results they need to be below the fold…not the common above the fold positioning.
The Good News
For both Native Ads and Social Media, the landscape is changing quickly. There are ways to get information read using special tools. Apps like Gizmodo or Refinery 29 help with the problem.
Newly devised techniques work within social media systems like Facebook and Instagram to generate leads, conversions, and more loyal customers. This employs systems like remarketing, lookalike audiences, Facebook AI, as well as Messenger, and paid marketing. Facebook also owns Instagram. That means the two can be coordinated to work together.
However for this to work, if you want the viewer to read and take action, there must be real value. It must be current, relevant, and free of gimmicks or tricks.
This style of marketing takes more effort and may cost a little more however the rewards are more loyal repeat customers. ROI and lifetime value are heightened. We aren’t just trying to get clicks, we are trying to engage and keep the reader’s attention longer. Longer attention increased sales opportunities.
Right Now is the Perfect Time to Engage!
During an economic upheaval, people either contract and wait for it to blow over or dive in and take advantage of the opportunities. It’s time to take action.
Giants like Walmart, Target, Amazon, and many, many others are doing the second and seeing massive increases in sales.
Have you asked yourself these questions? What would an increase in sales do for you? What would it look like? What would the outcome be?
Can you really afford to sit on the sidelines and let the missed opportunities leave your business struggling?
There’s an alternative. We can talk and look at how focusing on client engagement via web and email plus using the power of social media can not only help you survive but thrive…become stronger and more recession-proof. Message me or visit my website to schedule a call. www.jculpcreativecopy.com.
If your website can’t pass the 8-Second Marketing test…you are losing customers and money. It’s true… you have only eight seconds to get their attention before they click away. Microsoft’s research proved a goldfish will hang around a second longer than people will. The argument might be that goldfish aren’t as smart.
That’s down from 12 seconds in 2000. Canadian researchers have been tracking the changes in a survey of 2000 participants. In another study, they used EEGs on 112 volunteers to validate their findings. Reduction in attention correlates exactly with the rocket-paced evolution of technology.
What it boils down to is with so much information coming in, it’s harder to hold our attention. Our brains try to sort out what is most important to us and protectively operating on semi-auto pilot, delete the rest.
Choices Evolved and Exploded
Back in the early 1960s, there were three television choices and no internet. You could watch ABC, CBS or NBC. That changed rapidly over the next two decades. It blossomed to over 700 UHF and VHF stations. By 2013 the growth had stalled and the number of stations peaked at 1781.
If you had access to cable your choices became far more vast than stations broadcast over the air. Today it’s not uncommon for the average viewer to have access to well over 200 choices.
At the same time television was evolving, so were computers and the internet. By 1991, the first chatrooms on the internet became open to the public. From what started as small private forums choices exploded.
Home computers, popular for work tasks, took on a whole new life. We could work, socialize, play games, stay in touch with family and friends. All you needed was internet capability and your choices exploded.
The internet race was on. Now we have access to entertainment on our televisions, and on every electronic device, we own. Small wonder it became the new marketing playground.
It’s a Mistake to Underestimate Your Viewer
The research documented a decreasing attention span. Somehow this got linked to less intelligence. It couldn’t be farther from the truth. We’ve had to become more choosy.
We don’t have time to deal with every option, email, or offer that comes our way. So we let our puzzle-solving brains help us out by filtering and deleting what it sees as not of interest.
It’s also a mistake to think that this only applies to websites. When you’re driving at 60 miles an hour you are whizzing past marketing. Billboards and roadsigns have 6 seconds…think six words or less…to get read.
Direct mailers have long known we can decide in three seconds whether to put their mail in the open file, or the trash.
Short, clear, and concise is always better.
Three Ways to Pass the 8-Second Marketing Rule
Everything you put out there, emails, content, articles, needs to pass the scan test. Test the message by getting feedback from a shopper for their first quick impression.
Marketers and brands work so closely with projects, they can miss what a shopper won’t. Get outside feedback.
Make sure each page, article, email has one clear message. Eliminate confusing. Reinforce that concept with the right images, videos, and scannable content.
Graphics and images reinforcing the single clear message increase engagement. The old adage “a picture is worth a thousand words,” holds true. It helps us remember what was important.
There is one common problem I see repeatedly. Graphics departments tend to go for visual over readable. They take that carefully crafted message and put it into a long-lump of single content so it fits beautifully next to an image.
The mistake is that the paragraph is hard to read. It fails the scan test. We need white space built-in for easy reading. White space is like breathing room for the visitor.
Unfortunately, many web designers would take each of my sub-sections and make them a single paragraph. You will lose the reader. Give them room. Make it easy to scan and read.
Engage with Emotion
We can’t help ourselves, we respond non-verbally to visuals, images, color, and sound.
Fast food restaurants have used color for years. Red and yellow energize us, however the colors are so stimulating, we can’t stay in the environment for a prolonged period of time. That worked to generate quicker turn-over of the tables and more customers in the store.
Now, living in an age of stress and uncertainty, we crave calm and soothing colors. Look to see more serene blues and greens and gentler background music for all sorts of businesses.
If you offer a website with a diversity of products for different needs, make navigation easy. Avoid confusing navigation. Anything that brings up roadblocks or frustration is a negative experience. Negative emotions lose customers.
Entertain, educate, and engage their attention.
It may be harder to make your first sale to people with all the choices out there, but engaging, educating, and entertaining, will keep them coming back.
8-Second Rule Wants Simple Clarity
Sacrificing clarity to put something clever and catchy on your website backfires more often than not. Clever and catchy are often vague. They create frustration and stop any chance at conversation.
When it comes to the viewer’s number one question – “Do they have what I need?” straight forward, clear and relevant is what they want. Avoid meaningless, vague jingle or clever slogans. There are too many better choices to put up with those.
I love the phrase I’ve seen repeatedly, “If you confuse them you will lose them!”
Your copy AND your graphic design need to be clear and straightforward. Get your design department thinking in terms of helping the viewer…not being cute or clever.
Quality content counts. Copy written for scanning and quick reading, it’s far more useful to the viewer.
Make sure to clearly answer all the questions the visitor may have. You want them to know you can solve their problem, and improve their quality of life.
Visitors want proof like testimonials from other clients. They want to know what makes you different from the other two billion websites out there.
Guests want to see and feel you are reliable and honest. And a key sticking point can be how to contact you to get questions answered.
Most of all…they want it clear, simple, easy.
How does your content measure up?
If you haven’t had an outside take a look and give you feedback, you should. I have a quick service that I offer to first-time clients to do just that. Message me or book a call on my website.
You may also enjoy these articles on customer engagement.
In the best of times and in the midst of crisis, customer connectivity is core to business success. That means we need to focus on helping them as real people, not clicks, and dollar signs.
An Empathy Lesson I Learned Early
I spent over 20 years in the spa industry offering skincare and cosmetic tattooing. They are optional services and high-ticket.
At first, like any field, you are trying to get your skillsets perfected. Then you have to learn marketing…it’s not taught in the training programs. You have to build the client’s trust, help them like you, let them get to know you.
You are a coach, educator, someone who has had their problem and understands what they are feeling.
I learned that listening with empathy, focusing on the client, learning from them, and engaging with them was key. My total goal was to help them feel better about themselves and make their lives easier.
I developed great friendships with many caring, professional colleagues with successful careers.
I also met some that were of a very different nature…transactional. The client was a job, money. Regardless of what they said, they weren’t really engaging with them. And their careers were short-lived.
I’ve seen the same thing in many alternative health businesses. Supplements, CBD, skincare, and beauty products. Engaging with empathy makes a big difference.
Something to Remember
What most businesses don’t tend to keep in mind in their marketing is customers don’t decide to buy logically.
We are feeling beings who think, not the other way around. Even the most analytical person you know depends on discipline to control letting their emotional thoughts impact their decision.
A respected neuroscientist, Antonio Damasio, discovered that every human decision depends on emotion. Every single decision.
We must focus on emotional connections and let them lead naturally to see conversion. That relies on really deeply knowing your customer and their emotional motivators.
3 Ways to Enhance Your Empathy Marketing
A lot of marketing tends to be random. A study by the CMO Council reported that 80% of markets don’t know what the next best action for their customers is.
They need to automate to enhance customer engagement. However, automation is transactional. That makes it harder to employ emotional marketing.
Here are three ways you can apply empathy today.
Start with Your Customer
“Walk a mile in their shoes.” You need to go into their world, their mindset to really understand them. Look for how you can make their lives better, solve their problems. What do they want? How is their problem impacting their life?
Do they want their pain to stop? Do they want to sleep better or perform better? Why? Feel better? Why? To enjoy life more? Enjoy their family more?
Look for ways you can help them.
Let them know you understand their problem, feel their pain. Show them how to solve their problem. Validate it. Other customer’s success stories can be very effective at doing this. A real person they can identify with. They build trust.
Develop Digital Conversations
Think conversations first, then let them slide into fulfilling the steps of a buying journey. None of us like to be “sold to.” We like and are quite willing to buy if something will make us happier and solve a problem. Focus on the conversations. Extend an invitation to talk, to converse.
Social media can be a great opportunity for this.
Start with the conversation…invite dialogue. Listen and learn. Converse with them. Finally, recommend something that will help them.
When we focus on helping, the relationship changes. We’re there to help them…not focused on getting a sale.
Bring that attitude and those emotions into your marketing. Treat them like you’d like to be treated in their place.
Provide Empathy Content
Customers and prospective customers don’t want more content. They want helpful, empathetic, useful information. It needs to be customer-centric. It needs to show them a solution to their problem. Support them. Sometimes it’s hard to make a change.
Use the terms customers use. Helpful blog posts. Useful case studies. Fantastic articles. Amazing videos. It’s all about feelings, emotions, and the right word choices.
Support this with one of the things that customers want most…quality interactions with your team. Your team needs to feel your empathy, incorporate it into your company culture and share it with customers.
One Last Thought
Emails are a great place to include empathy. Every business is ramping up an email’s place in marketing. However, I see a lot of emails that are stuck in the old long-form sales letter format. Or on the other side…purely transactional.
For an article on using RAS Triggers to activate empathy, you might find this article interesting. Read it Here.
It’s time to update to empathetic emails that follow modern guidelines if you want more opens and conversions.
Need help bringing more empathy into your marketing efforts? Message me: Judith@jculpcreativecopy.com.
The motivator response in our brain triggers us to take action and rewards us with a dopamine rush. It’s a surge of good feelings following a pleasant experience. It’s as old as man himself.
A key part of survival, the primal brain includes a series of triggers that make us take action.
When we take the action, it rewards us with what is called a dopamine rush. It’s that good feeling we get from eating ice cream, chocolate, and the like.
Can you imagine???
Our caveman ancestors spent a lot of time searching for food. Can you imagine trudging out there hunting for an animal to kill? Hot. Cold. Windy. Wild carnivores looking to eat you.
It took strong motivation to do it. The primal brain drove them on. When they did see an animal, maybe rabbits, deer, bison…or a wooly mammoth, their brain rewarded them. It offered triggered good feelings.
The reward of satisfaction and anticipation spurred them on to the kill. Success…more good feelings rewards.
Dopamine Rush Today
We’ve come a long way, but our brain hasn’t changed. We get a dose of adrenaline to escape a potential accident from the crazy driver in front of us. Or the idiot pedestrian who steps out into the street without bothering to check if there are cars coming.
We get the feel-good rush from foods we like and more. We are rewarded for finding a mate, having a baby, having a circle of friends, being a part of the team.
All of these trigger a dopamine rush.
Men get an emotional high from an action movie or a football game.
Women get their highs from finding a perfect gift for a friend, bringing someone joy, getting a hug. Or a positive shopping experience.
When we get one of those responses, it triggers us to repeat the behavior.
If you have a clear avatar of your customer, the dopamine rush can be effectively triggered in marketing efforts. Our goal in their interactions with our business, or brand, is a positive experience that triggers the rush. If we succeed, they are likely to return to purchase again.
It must be a positive experience to get this trigger. Poor experiences with any touchpoint of our interactions trigger the opposite response and drive them away.
So before any active marketing campaign is undertaken we need to make sure all interactions lead to a positive experience. Website design, navigation, content, customer support, purchasing, post-purchase, shipping, and delivery all need to be positive.
Then we can undertake to target the dopamine response in our marketing efforts. We can implement them on our website, social media, and emails.
3 Techniques to Trigger a Dopamine Rush
All three techniques tie into the fact we are reward-driven pleasure seekers. As much as we want to avoid pain or injury…we seek pleasure. There are several ways to get that result. Here are three techniques.
You can trigger the rush by creating excitement. Offer them fun. Let them win something.
You can generate excitement with a contest. We are driven to try to win, come out on top.
Flashing lights create excitement.
Having a winning ticket creates excitement.
Winning at bingo triggers a reward response.
Lottery bingo games trigger the response. State lottery games and casino gambling trigger the response. Sometimes so effectively that people become addicted.
Safeway uses this annually. So does Publisher Clearing House.
So do game shows and every business that put contests on Facebook or Instagram.
Use Trigger Words
Generate anticipation and curiosity by incorporating trigger words. Focus on words that generate curiosity, imagination, and anticipation.
All you can ___________
By invitation only
Kit (we love kits)
Use words and phrases that make intrigue your customer and make them want answers.
What does this mean?
What’s going on here?
How will this help me, I need to find out.
Pre-announcement of something new
Helpful hints on how your product can be used or give them the most benefit.
Celebrate milestones with them – theirs and yours
Free samples, free trials, and free demos work well. Feeling like we got more than we paid for absolutely triggers the response.
Stay in touch…if we know and like a brand, we like to hear from them. Stay in touch in a way that feels individualized and personal. You can use phone, text, or emails. They all strengthen the bond and trigger the rush.
Games make things fun. They give us rewards. And reward programs attract us. That’s why we sign up for them even if we don’t use them.
If we can fire up their anticipation for getting those “points” a bigger discount, or a free gift, we have a home-run.
Does your reward program offer multiple levels? Who wants to be in the “entry-level” group?
If we’re interested, we want more. Our seek pleasure drive wants us to have achievement and recognition. We want to be in “the group.” We want to be elite. …all dopamine rush triggers.
Want to read more about how rewards programs can benefit your business and learn about different types. See my companion article here
When I work with clients we start with their target customer and the type of RAS triggers that they respond to. Then we develop the plan and the rewards system that best suits them. Need help? Message me: Judith@jculpcreativecopy.com.