Everything to Know about Effective Customer Lifecycle Management

Understand and closely analyse the customer lifecycle which can allow your company to work accordingly to customer expectations. Know about it.

Everything to Know about Effective Customer Lifecycle Management

Building customer relationships that ensure mutual benefits help a company retain its customers for extended periods of time. After all, any business seeking to succeed in the long run is not just aiming at one-time deals with buyers.

Understanding and closely analysing the customer lifecycle can allow your company to work accordingly on its services, marketing strategies and sales operations, in turn leading to turning one-time buyers into repeated customers. 

Customer lifecycle: An introduction

The customer lifecycle is the journey that a buyer starts from making the first purchase from a business to becoming its long-time, loyal customer. It consists of five main stages, namely—Reach, Acquisition, Conversion, Retention and Loyalty.

It is essentially an outline of all the steps that customers take in order to provide an in-depth perspective to a company’s marketing, sales and customer service teams.

Thorough knowledge about the customer lifecycle can help create customer experiences that make buyers feel valued and desired at every stage of the process. The different stages of the customer lifecycle are explained below:

  1. Reach

 The first stage of this lifecycle is when customers start looking for a product or service that might be a solution to a problem or issue they are trying to resolve. A potential buyer looks at different brands, compares products, and reads buyer feedback during this stage.

This stage is called ‘Reach’ because it is every brand’s opportunity to reach a high potential customer. Some of the simplest methods of placing your brand in customer radars include effective social media marketing and regular Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).

The success determination of this stage depends on how many potential customers reach out to your business seeking more information about a product or service, trying to gain more information, or getting an idea of the prices.

  1. Acquisition

 As soon as a customer stops on your company’s website or tries to get in touch via call, they officially arrive in the acquisition stage. This stage can be attained in different ways depending on the channel of reach being used by a customer.

If a customer discovers your business via its website, leading them to content and information that is easy to understand, as well as educational, can eventually result in a purchase decision. A user-friendly website can include detailed blog posts, a cohesive pricing page and an FAQ section.

In the case of a customer reaching out via phone calls, understanding and responding to their concerns and queries in a proactive manner is integral. Offering products and services that can help them and giving them a detailed understanding of the same will largely influence their purchase decisions.

  1. Conversion

This is the stage where after having thought about everything and carefully deciding to invest in the product or the service that your company provides, the prospect goes ahead and officially transforms into your customer.

One of the most important things to do in this stage is to assure your customer that this is not just a transaction for you but the start of a new relationship. And this is where the work for ensuring customer retention begins.

  1. Retention

The beginning of customer retention is by following up with a customer regarding how they feel about the product/service as well as the brand, soon after a purchase is made. This can be done best by conducting customer feedback surveys and determining customer satisfaction scores.

Once information is collected in large amounts, this information can be used to better the products and services and enhance customer experience and support services. This is also the ideal stage for offering customers perks that are exclusive to your brand.

Some perks that can help you stand out amongst your competitors can include 24x7 support access, early-bird discounts, codes and coupons that promise additional services or reduced prices, etc. Such bonuses can turn an ordinary purchaser into a brand endorser.

  1. Loyalty

Regular, repetitive purchasing from one particular brand turns a buyer into a potentially significant asset for any business. Consistent satisfaction and services can encourage a customer to post about your business on their social media and/or write detailed positive reviews that may drive future potential buyers to purchase from you.

This stage can only be attained when the previous four stages are worked upon incessantly, with thoughtful efforts for both, refined customer experiences and product betterment. Brand loyalty needs labour and constant nurturing in order to be appropriately maintained.

Strategising customer lifecycle

In order to implement each stage carefully so as to yield the most beneficial outcomes, many different strategies to strengthen the customer lifecycle can be brought into action.

  1. Target audience recognition

Recognising which parts of the population your company’s products and services can appeal to the most is something that should be done at the ‘Reach’ stage itself. This helps improve marketing tactics as the business needs to reach specific groups of people. Targeted advertising also has a greater chance of retaining customers in the longer run.

  1. Enhanced customer service

Once customers move from the ‘Reach’ stage to the ‘Acquisition’ stage, they automatically get closer to making a purchase decision. This implies that there is a very high chance of them having more doubts and questions about what your company offers. Setting up a team that is proactively looking at customer engagement and responding to all incoming queries and concerns rapidly can do wonders in turning prospects into actual buyers.

  1. Personalised customer experience

Offering customers the same amount of care and attention after the purchase helps avoid most one-time transactions. Setting up an automated system to thank customers and personally reach out to them for immediate feedback collection plays a considerable role in the kind of customer experience that a brand aims to offer.

Maintaining customer survey forms that automatically collect user feedback and spend time and money incorporating collected feedback to make actual changes according to mass preferences will also help a business grow its loyal customer base.

Effective customer lifecycle management techniques

  1. Omnichannel approach for customers

Inconsistency in the communication channels and scattered customer information can lead to a lack of streamlining in potential buyer data. This loophole can induce imbalances in the effective and efficient management of the existing customer lifecycle and negatively impact the existing customer experience.

Cloud-based solutions can offer an excellent resolution for storing and managing customer data in an organised manner.

  1. Personalised interaction

Reaching out to customers to understand if they faced any obstructions during their purchase process and contacting failed prospects to understand what prevented them from buying from your brand are integral steps of this process.

In present times when a lot of employees are working remotely, a cloud telephony service can also be used to ensure greater personalised interaction and customer support services to enable customer retention for the company.

A personalised customer experience also encourages more and more people to talk about the business that they are buying from, thereby enabling great publicity!

  1. Post-purchase checking-in

The customer lifecycle does not end when a customer makes their first purchase. Retaining customers add more to a company’s growth than the acquisition of first-time buyers does.

Offering timely discounts, sending automated emails regularly, and using cloud services to store and manage buyer data are some of the many things a brand can do. It will ensure its customers that they are cared for and missed while further building upon its customer experience.

A Healthy customer lifecycle benefits all

Once the right tools and efforts are kept in place for every customer lifecycle stage, the chances of a business finding success, in the long run, become significantly high.

Taking charge of your company’s customer lifecycle by closely checking company performance, launching marketing campaigns that are centric to customer lifecycle management, and incorporating the right techniques for customer retention can lead to a highly effective management design.

A loyal customer base promises repeated purchases from a brand and ensures widespread good publicity, increased sales, and a sharp competitive edge.

Author Bio

Kritik Verma is a marketing enthusiast with a specialization in digital marketing. He is currently working at Servetel, leading cloud telephony providers offering cloud services like IVR, Toll Free Number and many more to boost business success. He enjoys cycling, travelling, indies music, and reading about the latest digital marketing trends.