An Unusual Customer Acquisition Idea

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funkyicon_video_cameraMost online retailers are already doing customer acquisition management… well, if you weren’t, you wouldn’t still be in business! As we learned during yesterday’s webinar, most retailers are dissatisfied with their current customer acquisition tools, strategies, and results. There’s a lot that can be taken from that information, and we’ll be exploring it in the days and weeks ahead.

But for today, let’s review what most marketers are currently working with:

  • online advertising
  • search marketing (paid and organic)
  • social media marketing
  • list purchasing
  • PR and content marketing
  • word of mouth from satisfied customers

It’s finding the right mix of these tools that’s at the heart of creative customer acquisition management.

One possible tool that’s not used enough by online marketers is the demonstration of the products or services being sold. You see product demonstrations at the mall all the time, and it’s effective. But in a digital world, it’s more difficult to grab a passer-by and ask if they’d like to see how your widget works.

Or perhaps not.

Video Play Sign On Mobile For Playing Media On PhoneB2B businesses are constantly offering demos, especially of software products; it’s one of the steps in their prospect pipeline. But why shouldn’t it work for B2C marketers? The reality is that YouTube is fast rivaling Google as a search engine, and if you don’t have a presence there, you’re missing out on exposure to and interaction with prospects.

So take a minute to see what others in your retail space are doing on video, and consider hiring a crew (no, don’t do it with your iPhone!) to create a demonstration of what you sell. You may just have opened up a new customer acquisition channel!

Take-aways from today’s Customer Acquisition Webinar: Challenges and Opportunities

The free webinar offered by CertainSource and Trendline Interactive was terrific, as we’re sure you agree if you were with us!

Just a reminder, first, of the questions that prompted this research:

Screen Shot 2014-10-07 at 2.01.56 PM

The first takeaway is the level of dissatisfaction marketers feel around current customer acquisition efforts: only 34% of the respondents were pleased with their current solutions.

Marketers who are satisfied with their current customer acquisition have two assumptions in common:

  1. Third-party vendors are critical to acquisition success.
  2. It doesn’t happen overnight—marketers need to analyze performance and hold vendors accountable.

 

The most common acquisition tactics currently used are online display to online registration (41%) and paid placement on social media sites (33%).

Screen Shot 2014-10-07 at 2.16.30 PMLooking more closely at the tactics delivering the best customers, we found that paid search driving to an online signup form, mobile media, and online display have a “secret sauce” that makes these tactics successful.

How are successful marketers measuring the effectiveness of their acquisition? The top three data points are campaign performance, source performance, and vendor performance.

Challenges, perhaps not surprisingly, are all about resources: budget, time, and people. In order to get those resources, marketers need the analysis to show positive ROI.

Must-haves in terms of tools include:

  • emphasis on optimizing leads
  • analysis
  • cleansing and protection

 

JASON  SIMON’s PRESENTATION ON HOW CERTAINSOURCE IS APPLYING THE SURVEY FINDINGS:

Screen Shot 2014-10-07 at 2.32.27 PMThere’s an acquisition dilemma: pressure on marketers to keep growing acquisition but there’s also a reluctance to take risks. Marketers spend more and more time optimizing house files but see acquisition as rented or purchased, and as an activity that doesn’t involve using a single platform.

The reality is that marketers purchasing lists often never know what sources these lists are coming from!

CertainSource Acquire is a tool that manages omnichannel media buys in a systemic manner: it adds CAM (customer acquisition management) to the already existing CRM (customer relationship management).

Screen Shot 2014-10-07 at 2.37.39 PMBy allowing a marketer to identify the sources behind a media spend that are specifically contributing the highest-value customer prospects, CertainSource radically improves acquisition spend results. In addition to the technology, CertainSource is inherently media-agnostic, meaning there is no incentive to “blend in” poor-performing sources with better ones to obtain “minimally acceptable” performance metrics.

CertainSource is 100% on the marketer’s side; it is not a media company.

A tool that identifies and “clones” the best-performing and low-risk sources delivers the best new customers. Neil Rosen presented case studies indicating eliminated risk while building the customer database.

Want to see it again? Just click here!

 

 

 

Today is D-Day for the Customer Acquisition Webinar!

social media chatter figuresDid you know that two-thirds of all marketers are dissatisfied with their current customer acquisition efforts? We know: we asked them, and the results of our survey are in.

“With only 38 percent of today’s marketers reporting that acquisition is a priority for their company, this is an eye-opening moment industry-wide,” says our CEO Neil Rosen. “Customer acquisition strategies in today’s marketing environment have become challenging, yet critical, for B2C marketers. On top of that, companies are facing more complex issues as a result of customers’ increasingly higher expectations.”

“The survey results indicate that while a majority of today’s B2C marketers are aware of the importance of customer acquisition, they don’t always have the right tools or resources to effectively manage long-term programs,” Rosen said.

According to co-presenter Morgan Stewart, of Trendline Interactive CertainSource’s new research reveals that, while acquisition can be challenging for companies today, “it’s still a great problem to have.” The key, he noted, is learning how to properly analyze performance to optimize over time.

shutterstock_109406663“The good news is that a growing number of marketers are becoming increasingly comfortable making customer acquisition a focus,” Rosen said. “However, acquisition is not something that marketers can quickly jump into and immediately succeed. It requires dedication, effort and ongoing analysis over time to do it right. The survey results show that while today’s marketers are beginning to get their feet underneath them when it comes to customer acquisition, they need to better understand how to effectively leverage analytics in the long-term.”

Stewart added:Finding the right lead sources to keep the stream of new customers flowing isn’t always easy. What’s preventing marketers from sufficiently acquiring new leads? What are the most effective methods for preventing list attrition? Participants in our upcoming webinar will find out the answers to these questions and other industry issues. They also will gain valuable insight on why analytics is quickly becoming the next key frontier for acquisition marketing.”

Want to learn more? Join us TODAY at 2:00 pm EDT for a full analysis of the data and a sneak peek at what 2015 holds! Just register here and we’ll see you this afternoon!

Your Best Customer Acquisition Opportunity is Almost Here!

puzzle piecesDon’t miss it: this is the week that you will regenerate and re-energize your customer acquisition program, finding just the right pieces to complete your company’s customer-acquisition puzzle. How? By participating in our free webinar tomorrow at 2pm and learning from industry experts what’s been happening in customer acquisition in 2014 … and what’s in store for 2015!

Join our live webinar as we hear from industry experts Morgan Stewart, CEO of Trendline Interactive, and Neil Rosen, CEO of CertainSource, as they share the findings from an in-depth report conducted last month and discuss the future.

We’ll be tweeting throughout the webinar, so be sure to check out #B2CAcquisitionReport—and use the hashtag to ask us questions in advance, too!

Listen: here’s the thing. Everyone talks about customer acquisition. Everyone tries to improve their customer acquisition. We’re offering you a fast and easy way to get on top of the current thinking in the space and make plans for a seriously successful 2015. Join other B2C marketers who have already registered, and we’ll see you tomorrow!

Click here to register for this terrific learning opportunity, and we’ll see you tomorrow!

Here’s Your Invitation

webinar1We’ve been talking about it, and it’s almost here! Next Tuesday, October 7th, is our free webinar  revealing what others in B2C marketing are doing around customer acquisition, so that you can improve your own B2C customer acquisition for 2104′s Q4 and beyond.

Join Morgan Stewart, CEO of Trendline Interactive, and Neil Rosen, CEO of CertainSource, as they uncover the stats and trends regarding customer acquisition in 2014 … and look forward to what 2015 will bring!

datastream3

Here’s what you’ll get …

  • You’ll uncover the latest stats and facts about acquiring customers in 2014.
  • You’ll find out what other B2C marketers are doing to acquire their best customers.
  • You’ll gather insights into gaining new high-value customers and driving sales.
  • You’ll hear from industry experts on optimizing your acquisition program.

 

And you can join the discussion! Any acquisition questions are welcomed and will be answered via Twitter: you can even ask in advance of the live session! Just use #B2CAcquisitionReport now and throughout the webinar to find out what you need to know to improve your own customer acquisition management program.

Consider joining us on October 7th and find out how to make 2015 your best year ever for acquiring new, high-value customers!

Don’t Overlook the Obvious in Customer Acquisition

woman thinking of the internetCustomer acquisition strategies tend to be complex. There’s a good reason for that: it’s a complex endeavor, and the constant testing that we talk about here is necessary to keep improving, keep responding, keep reaching the right target prospects.

But in the meantime, there’s no reason to not go after some of the obvious low-hanging fruit! There are all kinds of platforms that can help you to reach consumers online, a few of which include:

  • directories
  • industry blogs
  • social media outlets

 

shutterstock_130809365While you obviously can’t take advantage of every opportunity, you can’t afford to ignore those that are free, easy, and effective. Listing with directories, for example, will take you mere minutes, generally has no to little cost, and could bring someone in who will end up being one of your best customers ever.

Going after the low-hanging fruit doesn’t mean losing your targeting, however. You should always have the image of your ideal customer in front of you. You should know this person intimately: who she/he is, where they hand out, what other items they purchase, how your product or service can best help them. With that image in mind you can choose directories, blogs, and social media outlets that are most likely to deliver the best possible results.

Want to learn more about customer acquisition? Join us next Tuesday for a free webinar during which we’ll feature industry leaders discussing the state of customer acquisition in 2014.

 

Do It Everywhere: Multichannel Customer Acquisition

customer-acquisition-tacticsYou know the truth by now: even in the pre-digital sales era, different customers were best reached in different ways. Some responded to ads in magazines. Others liked television commercials. Still others came to you because of direct-mail advertising. Having multiple touchpoints ensured that you had multiple streams of prospects entering your sales funnel.

The internet is a lot bigger than your neighborhood, but the principle remains the same: multiple touchpoints means more customers. Period. And multichannel customer acquisition can be summed up in threee easy points:

  1. Strategize, strategize, strategize! Get to know your target customers so that you can select the right digital media channels to find and reach them. Then create creative campaigns to attract them across these channels.
  2. Analyze, analyze, analyze! The only way you’ll learn if your multichannel customer acquisition management program is working is if you can measure the results. Test, examine your findings, tweak, test again.
  3. Simplify, simplify, simplify! You don’t have to do customer acquisition alone: It’s best to partner with a service provider whose focus will be completely on your customer acquisition efforts. Planning, integrating, and monitoring multichannel marketing campaigns is both challenging and time-consuming. CertainSource works with brands that want to launch a multichannel marketing campaign but have neither the time nor the expertise for it. Find reputable marketing companies that specialize in your channels of interest to help guide you throughout the process.

 

All of this is true across all the touchpoints that you may choose in your campaign strategizing. Your multichannel mix will probably include email marketing (still the most effective digital marketing channel available), search marketing, content marketing, social media marketing, display advertising, and—the new and very important kid on the block—mobile marketing. No matter which channels you select, based on your ideal customer and where/how/when he or she interacts with your brand, the three principles remain true. Strategize. Analyze. Simplify.

Webinar screenshotCreating a multichannel customer acquisition program that works is often a matter of trying something out, testing it, learning from it. If you’d like to see what other companies and brands in the B2C space have been doing throughout 2014 for customer acquisition, join us on October 7th for a free webinar that will catch you up with he most recent trends in filling that sales pipeline. See you there!

 

What’s in Your Customer Acquisition Mix?

Where do your customers come from?

If you’re like most marketers, what you have is a customer acquisition mix. Some come to you from search. Some come from your lead acquisition sources. Still others from referrals from current enthusiastic customers.

And, again, if you’re like most marketers, you want to see how your mix compares to that of your competition.  Back when Google first launched its Benchmarking report, you could see some general trends, such as these:

Traffic-mix

 

Google has refined its process considerably since 2012, and your Google Analytics report now includes the kind of data that tells you where you compare to others in your industry in terms of how your customer mix is finding you. To access the Benchmarking reports, go to Audience > Benchmarking in the left navigation (in the Reporting section).

Benchmarking data is available for each value of the following dimensions:

  • Default channel grouping (i.e. social, direct, referral, organic search, paid search, display, and email channels)
  • Location (country/territory)
  • Device (i.e. desktop, mobile, and tablet)

 

You can compare your data against benchmarks for the following metrics:

  • Sessions (i.e. number of sessions)
  • % New sessions
  • New sessions (i.e., the number of sessions from new users)
  • Pages per session
  • Average session duration
  • Bounce rate

 

These comparisons are helpful in seeing what works for others in your industry and adjusting your own marketing mix. We’re going to offer you more information on what’s been going on throughout the industry in customer acquisition during our free webinar on October 7th. Sign up today to expend your understanding of the benchmarks you need!

 

 

Can You Improve Your CAC?

shutterstock_130809365The cost of acquiring a new customer can be broken down many different ways, and companies/brands are usually pretty good at figuring out what financial outlay goes into customer acquisition.

But there are other costs as well, costs that aren’t always figured into the spreadsheets. One of your greatest resources is time, and time is the easiest resource to lose track of! Just consider for a moment some of the time factors in customer acquisition:

  • The time your sales team spends on getting people onto your sales pipeline
  • The time you spend on social media outreach
  • The time you spend networking
  • The time you spend converting a customer from warm to paying
  • The time you spend on supplier calls or deals (with minimums to help provide you with the necessary inventory to sell onto your new customers)
  • The time you spend on sales channel calls or deals

 

And then, of course, there’s the money. The cost to acquire new customers is generally higher than most companies assume. Some years ago David Skok did an interesting analysis that still, by and large, holds true.

One of the more interesting things that this model shows is how rapidly cost of customer acquisition climbs If your leads require human touch to convert them. This human touch can be as light as email follow ups, or as much as inside sales people doing multiple sales calls and demos. I have seen this cost vary from around $400 to $5,000 per customer acquired, depending on the level of touch needed.

One of the things that CertainSource does is eliminate that very expensive need for human touch: CertainSource Acquire automates the process, so that you’re not only getting the best possible leads from the best possible sources, but you’re also automating the process, lowering your CAC dramatically.

We’d love to show you more. Want to know how you stack up in terms of your current acquisition efforts? Try a free demo of our Source Efficiency Index today!

 

Testing for Optimal Customer Acquisition

numbers1 2Marketing plans are great, aren’t they? You think about how to market your business, your product, or your service. You look at where your ideal customer is most likely to connect with you, and you optimize your presence there and plan your acquisition budget accordingly. You launch your campaign and hope for the best.

The only way to know whether or not your plan is working is to test it. Analytics are your friend: they tell you who is responding to your outreach, when they’re responding, and where they’re doing it. Where is traffic coming from? What outside factors boost traffic (blog posts, tweets, offline networking events, etc.)? What pages are viewed most often and for how long? Think about your ultimate goal for converting leads into clients and evaluate your marketing tactics accordingly. If your initial assumptions were way off-base, you have an opportunity to change your next campaign to use that information to your advantage.

There are so many metrics, however, that it’s easy to feel like you’re drowning in data. Big data might be a terrific thing to obtain and use, but for day-to-day customer acquisition, you need something more compact, easy to interpret, simple to use.

We make it EasyWhere do you begin? We’d like to suggest that you start by evaluating what your current customer acquisition campaigns are doing through our free Source Efficiency Index consultation. It can give you a score that tells you where your budget is being spent effectively, and when it is not. Testing is only effective when you have a baseline to which you can compare your ongoing efforts.

Make sure that your marketing plan for customer acquisition is working as hard as you are. We’re happy to help you see where you need to make changes, and help you increase your lead-to-customer ratio. And while you’re at it, why not sign up today for our free webinar on October 7th that will tell you all about customer acquisition in 2014 and beyond?