Digital marketing seems to undergo a paradigm shift every couple of years, and this latest transition to a more customer-centric, personalized marketing approach is no different It’s called customer journey marketing. Customer journey marketing might well be the biggest shakeup to business as usual in the marketing world in over a decade.
Customer journey marketing is far more sophisticated than anything that’s come before because it takes into account pre-purchase and post-purchase stages. Pre-purchase stages that a customer goes through on his or her way to making a purchase and collecting more information are: engagement, education, research, evaluation, justification, and purchase. These stages are all about getting more information and determining whether your brand is really the best of the bunch.
To prove that to the customer, you’ll have to send targeted email marketing messages out at each stage. These messages should match up with the customer’s current stage so that the customer will never feel pandered to, bored, or overwhelmed. Since engagement and education are really about fostering brand awareness and problem identification, respectively, your marketing should center around broadcasting the benefits of a particular product and conveying how that product can help a customer solve a problem.
The justification and purchase stages are more advanced pre-purchase stages in the customer journey that call on marketers to justify the value of their products and negotiate transactional factors in their marketing that could be keeping customers from making a purchase. You can overcome both of these hurdles with automated email marketing messages aimed at helping customers overcome their reservations and challenges.
The great thing about customer journey marketing is that it can help you retain the customers that you’ve managed to persuade to make a purchase. You do that by marketing according to the post-purchase stages outlined in the customer journey; these include: adoption, retention, expansion, and advocacy.
Adoption is all about implementation whereas retention is about garnering more satisfaction from the customer. You do that by sending periodic messages and answering queries related to how to get the best use out of your products. When you get into talking about expansion, that’s where things get really interesting.
Expansion in a customer journey marketing context is about upselling and cross-selling opportunities. The final stage in customer journey marketing is advocacy; that’s where you encourage customers to leave positive reviews and recommend you on social media. It’s about long-term customer satisfaction.