Posts Tagged ‘Tips’

6 Ways to Turn Feedback into Your Customer Retention Strategy

Monday, June 26th, 2017

The good (and bad) news is: customers aren’t shy. They’ll tell you exactly how they feel about your business when asked. And, what’s more, dissatisfied customers are pretty loud about it. If you’re in business long enough, you’ll definitely hear their voices.

But, I’m one of those people who like to look at the glass half-full. I believe that all feedback is good feedback because you can use every last bit of criticism to retain more of your customers.

When customers (past and present) tell you what they want, what they like, and especially what they don’t like, it’s a gift. You see, when frustration creeps in, churn is next. But as long as they’re talking to you about it, there’s still an opportunity for you to do something about it.

You can turn that feedback into a powerful customer retention strategy and slow churn to a grinding halt.

By the end of this post, I’m going to make you love feedback. And, not only that, I’m going to show you how to respond to feedback effectively. Let’s get to it.

Here’s a list of ways to get customer feedback.

Different Types of Feedback

Feedback comes in all shapes and sizes. Some of it’s positive, some of it’s negative, but all of it’s beneficial.

Here’s how you’ll most commonly receive customer feedback:

  • Answers to surveys – Surveys conducted on your website, within your app, or via email
  • Reviews of your product – Both on your site and on other sites
  • Blog comments – Both on your site and on other sites
  • Social media comments – Both on your social media page and on other platforms
  • Complaints via customer service – Complaints are always unsolicited, but still helpful

To find feedback that’s not given directly to you, you can use social listening tools like HootSuite or Google Alerts. Always be on the lookout for mentions of your brand and your products on search engines and social media. Chances are high that your customers are talking about you (even if you’re not getting direct feedback on your channels), so make it a plan to actively search for it.

1. Use Feedback to Develop Your Product

For many SaaS, a lot of the customer feedback will be product-centric. You’ll start to notice a trend with the praises and the complaints. There will be features of your product that are universally loved by all. But, on the other hand, you’ll start to see that certain features aren’t quite hitting the mark.

This is what I love about feedback. It shows you what you’re doing right and what you’re doing wrong.

So, listen to your customers, and take their comments to heart. Pay attention to the most frequently received feedback and update your product accordingly.

By doing so, you’ll create a better product that’s more in-tune with what your customers are asking for, thereby improving your retention.

But– and this is huge– don’t get so focused on pleasing every customer that you lose yourself as a brand. You’ll go crazy trying to tweak your product to suit every customer. So don’t even try. Instead, focus on the most common criticisms. After you tackle the bigger problems, the smaller problems usually self-correct.

Also, it’s important that all customer comments and complaints are relayed to the management staff. It’s easy for comments and complaints to come into one department and then die there.

Do you receive all of the feedback from customer service, social media, sales, and your tech support in one central location? If not, a lot of important feedback may be falling through the cracks.

2. Be Quick to Respond

Follow up on all feedback.

While feedback can be positive or negative, it’s your follow-up response that can actually make or break the customer’s experience with you. In some cases, your response can determine whether the customer stays or leaves.

If you don’t respond, customers are much more likely to leave with a negative impression of your business. They’ll think that you’re either “too big” to respond to the “little guys” or that you’re out of touch with your customers. Either way, it’s a bad message to send to your customers.

Fortunately, it’s pretty easy to respond to feedback. A quick, but thoughtful, sentence or two is all it takes to show your customer that you truly value their input.

Be sure to respond in like kind: via email, social media, blog posts, or forums. This is where social listening tools really come in handy. A friendly “Thanks for the feedback! We’ll look into your suggestion” can be a satisfying conclusion for your customer– especially if you mean it!

3. Be Transparent

So, you don’t want to say anything that you don’t mean. If you say that you’re going to consider their suggestion, do so. If you decide to make changes accordingly, circle back around and let the customer know that you’ve done it. This small, but rare, nod to the customer can really boost your retention rates.

Think about it: customers like to know that you listen to them and are willing to act on their feedback. That act will win over your customers.

After you’ve implemented the feedback, broadcast it on all of your outlets. Create a blog post, shout out via social media, send out an email– even make a press release. Be sure to share that your change is a result of customer feedback. Your customers will appreciate your transparency.

4. Use Positive Feedback to Recruit New Customers

Every now and then, you’ll have a customer send you a complimentary email, explaining how your product has helped them change their lives. Whenever you get such positive feedback, jump on this opportunity and look for ways that you can incorporate it into your marketing.

Positive feedback can provide an extra level of credibility and improve your trustworthiness as a brand.

Remember to respond quickly and ask the customer if you may use their words (and their likeness) to promote your product. Most customers won’t have a problem with your request. When you get the go ahead, place their positive feedback everywhere you can– on your website, social media, promotional content, and landing pages. You may even be able to score an interview with the customer for a case study.

5. Incorporate Feedback into Your Upselling

Upselling is great for increasing the lifetime value of your customers. Make upselling a part of your retention strategy by encouraging your current customers to continue buying from you.

I recommend using positive feedback (i.e. testimonials) as part of your upsell marketing. Show how others are using your upgrade product to effectively solve their problem.

Another thing to consider: enable reviews (both good and bad) of your product on your website. Reviews can motivate customers to buy the higher priced product because people trust other people.

6. Show Customers the Ropes

Once you’ve implemented changes in accordance to the feedback, make sure that your customers are not only aware of the changes, but they also feel comfortable with those changes.

Create an email series that highlights the different changes to your product and send it out to your current customers.

Additionally, create an in-app tour of the significant changes that you made to your product.

Radically changing your product (even if it’s for the better) can actually increase churn. No one wants to feel lost using your new and improved product. Combat that by showing your customers how to successfully navigate around your updated product.

Final Thoughts

Thoughtfully employing customer feedback will show customers that you value them. It will have a positive impact on your retention because customers who feel heard are a lot more likely to stick around.

Don’t forget to download this list of ways to ask for customer feedback.

Use These 6 Email Marketing Strategies to Keep Your SaaS Customers Engaged

Monday, June 12th, 2017

One of the most important ways to reach your customers is through email. And you thought email marketing was dead.

According to MarketingSherpa, 72% of customers prefer using email to communicate with companies. That percentage towers over the 17% of customers who prefer communicating via social media.

So, do you have a rock solid email marketing campaign to keep your customers engaged and informed? If you’re like most SaaS out there, I’m guessing the answer is no. But that’s okay, you’re here and we’re going to tackle email marketing together.

Let’s discuss the most important things you need to know about email marketing first, and then we’ll look at the key tips to remember when marketing via email.

Here’s a list of best practices to remember when sending emails to your SaaS customers:

The Benefits of Email Marketing

Why is email marketing so important? It’s all about money.

You may have heard the phrase, “the money’s in the list.” Here’s what that means: Email has a 3800% return on investment. You stand to gain $38 dollars for every $1 spent in email marketing. After you’ve created a list, no matter how small, you can start to nurture your subscribers and turn them into customers. Then, you can keep investing in those customers, and continue to bring in revenue.

What’s even more impressive is that 91% of email subscribers sign up because they want to get promotional emails from the companies. If people are signing up for your list, it’s because they want you to market to them. Don’t be shy.

The biggest benefit of email marketing is that you can continue to stay connected to your audience. The hope is that you’ll eventually woo these subscribers into customers. With a proper email marketing strategy, you’ll definitely stay “top of mind”. This is essential because most people aren’t ready to buy right away, but if you keep nurturing them, one day, they will buy.

For those who have already converted into customers, your emails become gentle reminders to use your product. This is important in the first few days after signing up, because you want your new customers to get in the habit of using your app religiously.

Finally, email marketing is a great way to gather feedback from your audience. You can survey your list periodically or conduct research trials on new products before releasing to the general public.

Understand the Types of Emails to Send

There are six main types of emails that you can send to your audience. Here’s the breakdown:

Welcome

Your welcome email is the first email that you’ll send your new subscriber or user. In this email, you’ll set expectations on when to expect your emails, how often you send emails, and what you’ll discuss in your emails.

The content of your welcome emails will differ, depending on the audience.

If you’re sending a welcome email to someone who’s signed up for your service, you should include a getting started guide, where you discuss how to use your product.

If you’re sending a welcome email to someone who’s signed up for your newsletter but not your product, you should direct them to a landing page with a “best of” list of your best content. If you’ve promised a freebie (i.e. a lead magnet), you’ll also send instructions on how to retrieve it.

Newsletters

Newsletters are informational emails that keep your audience connected to you. You’ll send these emails to your entire list. But I do recommend segmenting for better open rates (more on this later).

Your newsletters should be sent on a frequent and consistent basis (for example, once a week every week).

In these newsletters, you’ll keep subscribers updated on any news concerning your company or your products. You’ll share blog posts. You’ll give them the heads up on any upcoming sales.

Lead nurturing

Lead nurturing is not the same as a newsletter. In lead nurturing, your entire goal is to move the subscriber from prospect to customer. You’ll do this through educational content, such as email courses. You can also use testimonials and case studies to persuade.

Promotional

Promotional emails are a favorite for your users. In these emails, you’ll send news of special discounts, promotions, and sales.

Transactional

Transactional emails are usually triggered by behavior from the subscriber. For example, if the subscriber needs to reset his or her password, you’ll send this type of email automatically. Other transactional emails include upsells, cross-sells, and receipts.

Cart Abandonment

Last but not least is the cart abandonment email. This is the email you should send immediately (within 30 minutes) after a customer leaves without completing a purchase. Approximately 23% of users abandon their carts on purpose in anticipation of a discount. Whether you want to give a discount or not is up to you, but sometimes rescuing a sale is better than not making any profit.

1. Segment Your List

You should always segment your list. Always.

Here are a two stats to remember:

No doubt about it– you should segment your list if you want to get more people to read your content.

If you’re just starting out, here are three important segments to consider:

1 – People who’ve purchased your product.

Send this segment emails of support, promotions, upsells, surveys, discounts, and information about your loyalty referral program.

2 – People who’ve expressed interest in your product but haven’t purchased.

Send this segment case studies, discounts, and webinar invitations.

3 – People who have initiated a trial but haven’t purchased.

Enroll this segment in an email course where you educate them on how to use your product. Towards the end of the trial, send testimonials, case studies, and special discount offers.

Here are a few other ways to segment your list:

By sign up date – Get your new subscribers up to speed and send them your “greatest hits” emails before funneling them into your main newsletter list. This allows you to gently introduce them to your list without throwing them into the deep end.

By app activity – Send emails based on where the user is in their customer journey with you.

By location – Send location-specific emails, such as discounts that coincide with special holidays like 4th of July or Canada Day.

2. Be Mindful of the Preview Text

Are you optimizing your email content for the preview text?

Preview text is the snippet of content that shows what your email is about. Most email marketing services provide a space for you to include your preview text.

So, why is it important?

Preview text allows a reader to determine whether or not to open your email. If your preview text isn’t relevant, then the reader isn’t going to bother opening your email at all. Your preview text needs to compel the reader to open.

Depending on the email provider, you have approximately 90 characters (not words) to persuade the reader. I recommend using this opportunity to ask a question. Questions immediately engage.

Preview text isn’t supported by every email service, but most of the bigger email providers offer it, including Apple Mail, Gmail, Outlook, and Yahoo!.

3. Send Emails Frequently

Aim to send out your emails on a frequent and predictable schedule. According to this study, the majority of your email subscribers want to hear from you weekly. If weekly sounds like too much of a commitment, send no less than once a month. Twelve emails in a year is doable for just about any SaaS.

The reason you should send out frequent emails is so that you stay “top of mind” for your subscribers. They should get used to hearing from you often. This will help them remember you when it’s time to finally make that purchase you’ve been nurturing them into buying.

4. Keep Your Emails Short and Sweet

The most effective emails are surprisingly short. You don’t have to spend a lot of time composing lengthy emails. According to Boomerang, the most effective emails are between 50 to 125 words in length.

That’s approximately three paragraphs.

Image Courtesy of Boomerang

Maybe it’s due to our ever-decreasing attention span. Maybe it’s because the inbox is a pretty hostile place where users just want to get in and get out. No matter the reason, the best performing emails are short.

It gives you just enough time to pique your user’s curiosity and invite them to read more.

So, in the case of newsletters, just include an excerpt and invite the user to click over for more information. That way you’ll get users back to your website– a win!

5. Send Valuable Emails

Don’t send emails that are nothing more than glorified status updates. While I do recommend sending your emails on a consistent basis, if there’s nothing to report, then don’t.

You should always send the most valuable content to your subscribers. Your emails should be something that your subscribers look forward to receiving.

6. Mind the Call to Action

Your call to action is crucial for engaging customers. Don’t send an email without purpose. Your emails should direct users to your blog, ask users to sign up for a trial, invite users to a webinar, or encourage them to refer new friends. End every email with what the user should do next. If you don’t, they’ll delete it and move on.

Speaking of which, make sure that you click on the link at the bottom of this post to receive a checklist of emails you should send to your SaaS customers.

Download our list of SaaS email marketing best practices:

8 Creative Ways to Increase Customer Loyalty

Monday, May 1st, 2017

Churn happens. But it doesn’t have to happen to you.

You can minimize churn by maximizing customer loyalty.

While everyone’s focused on getting more customers, it’s actually better to keep the ones you have. In a study by Bain & Co., researchers found that increasing customer retention by 5% improved profits by up to 95%. Plus, acquiring new customers is a lot more expensive than retaining them– up to 25 times more expensive, in fact.

So, if you want to increase customer retention and loyalty, but have no idea how to do it, keep reading. I’m going to share eight ways to increase customer loyalty that you may not have considered yet. Let’s get started.

Here are 10 important takeaways to improve your customer retention.

1. Offer Customizable Service

Are you only offering static plans to your customers? Having basic plans are great, but if you’re focused on customer retention, you’ve got to offer customizable service.

According to Accenture, 41% of consumers prefer and are loyal to the brands that allow them to personalize their service.

The “one size fits all” approach doesn’t work well for retention. Your marketing may draw them, but once they figure out that your product isn’t flexible enough to do what they need, they’ll leave.

To minimize churn, think of your ideal customer, and what they may need that you don’t currently provide. Can you offer those features for an additional fee? Can you offer to take away features that they don’t need for a reduction of price?

For example, create an a la carte menu that allows customers to create their own perfect product that suits their needs.

2. Proactive Customer Service

Piggybacking off of that last point, you should invest in a customer support team. Here’s why:

One of the best ways to predict a customer’s loyalty is to actually allow them to design your product.

This same Accenture study shows that 44% of consumers are loyal to businesses that value customer co-creation. In other words, when you invite customers to create the product that they need, you’ll be rewarded with increased customer retention.

Customers like having a customized product that meets their needs.

The only problem is that you can’t just have customers customizing their own products willy nilly. That leads to confusion, frustrating, and ultimately, abandonment in favor of a friendlier option.

So, you need a customer success team that helps the customer:

  • Know your product
  • Personalize your product
  • Use your product

Compared to customer service, a customer success team doesn’t just wait for customers to initiate the conversation. A customer success manager, or team, should proactively reach out to the customer. And it should be a personal and genuine interaction. No form letters, please.

The primary focus of your customer success team is to develop customer loyalty. Whether that’s through upselling the customer the right product or by customizing your product offerings, your customer success team is an invaluable part of your retention strategy.

Learn more about customer success here.

3. Create a Loyalty Program

Everyone likes to feel like they’re part of an exclusive club. Do you have a club for your customers?

If you’d like to create one, but aren’t sure what to build a loyalty program around, here are two ideas:

  • Affiliates and Referrals – Incentivize word of mouth marketing among your customers by offering perks for referrals. This is two for the price of one– you’re appreciating your customers while also activating them to market for you.
  • Important Milestones – Celebrate important anniversaries (such as when your customer signed up) by gifting them with a special discount or freebie.

If you do create a loyalty program, make it worthwhile and exciting. It should feel special to your customers. Customers are less likely to leave a company that actually values their loyalty with goods gifts (such as exclusive discounts and free upgrades).

4. Invest in Ongoing Customer Education

Customers need to know how to use your product. If someone buys into your marketing and decides to try your product, but once they get inside of your app, they have no idea what is going on, they’re going to leave. It’s that simple.

For this reason, companies that put a premium on education also have higher retention rates.

Here are ways that you can continue to educate your customers well past the landing page:

On your website

Your website should be the central hub of information for using your product. Make sure you have the following:

Via email

Email marketing is my favorite way to educate customers because it’s proactive. You’re not reacting to their call for help, you’re actively sending out information that helps them. In addition to having an active customer success team, here are a few emails you should send:

  • Email Course (an automated course that gives beginner or ongoing tips on how to use your product)
  • Guides (in your email, link to a page on your website with a how-to guide that’s targeted to your customer persona– ideally, you’ll have several guides based on each customer persona you have)
  • Quick tips (no need to link to your website, just add all of the information in the body of your email)
  • How-to videos (linked to a landing page on your site, don’t link directly to Vimeo or YouTube)
  • Webinars (linked to a landing page on your site, don’t link directly to Vimeo or YouTube)

5. Be Charitable

One of the best ways to increase customer loyalty is to focus on a social goal that you can share with your customers. Obviously, the first goal is getting them what they need from your service, but you should also consider setting a bigger and more aspirational goal.

Whether you support the building of wells in Africa, a summer camp that teaches kids how to code, or a volunteer organization that plants trees in the Amazon, you need some big idea that galvanizes your brand, your customers, and your employees around a single vision.

I know you’re probably thinking, Does this really increase customer loyalty?

According to this study, 37% of consumers in the US are more loyal to brands that support charities or causes that they care about.

So, don’t be shy. If you’re involved in giving back to a charity, make sure that your customers know it. And that they feel connected to it. An inclusive way to do this is by sending an email to them, sharing you’ve donated X amount of money in their name to a charity.

By the way, simply showing that you care about the environment can boost your profits. A study conducted by Nielsen shows that 66% of consumers will pay more for products and services provided by brands committed to sustainability.

If you’re putting that money towards helping the environment, your prospects will be able to justify the higher cost.

An example of how you can incorporate this: On your homepage, share that your servers are powered by 100% renewable energy. It may seem like a small detail, but it can sway the odds in your favor between you and your competition, especially if your prospect cares about the environment.

6. Keep Them In the Loop

Sometimes, churn happens because credit cards expire or are cancelled. And, if you don’t have a plan in place to notify your customer, they may not even notice. They’ll just come to use your service, and realize they’re cancelled, but not know why. This often initiates a series of unfortunate events that culminates in your customer churning for good.

But you can avoid all that by staying in close contact with your customers. Notify them well in advance before a card is set to expire. And when cancellations happen (and they happen a lot more often than you think), make sure that you’re communicating with your customers and letting them know what’s going on. Your customer may not know there’s an issue with their card, and the worst way to find out is if they come to use your service but are locked out.

Dunning emails are an integral part of customer retention. By improving communication between you and the customer, you’ll also inspire greater loyalty.

7. Upsell Them

You may think that once you get customers, you should not bother them and just be happy that they signed up.

Wrong.

You need to get them even more invested in your product, and the best way to do that is through upselling.

Upselling should always be a part of your retention strategy.

Upselling strengthens your customer’s level of engagement with your business. When upsold, the customer is no longer just dipping their feet into your services, they get totally immersed. And then something magical happens:

They start to think more highly of your company. The more invested they are, the higher your perceived value in their eyes.

Customers are way more loyal to businesses that they’re invested in. If I pay more for a service or product, I’m definitely going to use it more. And I’m also more likely to think that it’s worth the money.

You shouldn’t just have one upsell opportunity (i.e. the base plan and the premium plan). You should have multiple add-ons that customers can tack onto their service plan.

8. Be the Trusted Choice

Accenture found that a whopping 85% of consumers like and are loyal to brands that protect their privacy.

Do your customers feel protected when using your product? Do they know how you protect their information?

Because privacy (and security) are essential to customer retention, you’ve got to let your customers know that it’s a priority for you. Plus, you’ve got to let them know how you do it.

Some SaaS nod to privacy in their microcopy. For example, some companies reassure customers during sign up with a notice like “we will never share your information with others”.

Be sure to link to your privacy policy, and it won’t hurt to include the details of how you keep your customers’ data safe.

Trust badges are another way to quickly convey that your service is committed to security. Add badges like McAfee, Powered by Stripe, Truste, and Norton Secured to your site to increase security.

Additional Resources

Check out these related posts:

Don’t forget to download this list of 10 tips to improve your customer retention.

How to Get Incredible Customer Testimonials

Monday, April 17th, 2017

FEATURED_How-to-Get-Incredible-Customer-Testimonials

Need testimonials but not sure how to get them?

Pull up a seat. That’s exactly what we’re discussing in this post.

You know that testimonials play a huge role in the success of your business. Testimonials provide social proof. Testimonials show that not only have people used your product, but that they endorse your product.

For these reasons, testimonials are so much more convincing than your own marketing. People trust proven results, not glitzy promises.

But here’s the problem: testimonials are hard to come by. Even when people are happy with your product, they probably won’t reach out to you saying, “Hey, I want to leave a testimonial for your product.”

So, the burden rests on you to not only find people who are willing to offer testimonials, but also source the right testimonials to convert your prospects.

Mission impossible? Absolutely not. You can find incredible testimonials for your product, and I’m going to show you how. Let’s get started.

What Makes a Testimonial Incredible?

Not all testimonials are created equal.

A vague testimonial like, “I love this product” doesn’t do much to persuade a prospective customer. It doesn’t answer the all-important why?.

An over-the-top testimonial like, “This product is the best thing ever created in the history of the universe” is not effective, either. It sounds a little too enthusiastic, and prospects will immediately disregard it unless the claim is backed up by facts.

These types of testimonials are wonderful for boosting your ego, but don’t do much to push your products.

Let’s take a look at the four requirements of a quality, customer-converting testimonial.

It’s got to be credible. Your testimonials need to look like they come from actual customers and not your marketing team (it happens). Attaching photos to your testimonials is a great way to create a sense of a credibility. If you have video testimonials, that’s even better for establishing credibility. Also, make sure that you link to their business website or social media for extra credibility points.

It needs to be consumable. A testimonial doesn’t have to be short, but it should be snackable. Think of your average customer. Chances are they’re busy, they’re stressed out, and they’re trying to find the right solution for their problem, but they don’t know whether to try your product or go with the tempting offer of your competitor. They need to see testimonials that get straight to the point and answer their hesitations. Select testimonials that do just that.

It should be specific. Vague testimonials need not apply. Instead of showcasing ego-boosters on your website, social media, and email campaigns, use testimonials that give insight into what problem your product solves. “I’ve gained X amount of hours a day since using this product” is an example of a specific testimonial. In one sentence, this testimonial highlights a key benefit to using your product.

It must be relatable. The testimonials should come from people who look like the rest of your audience. Choose testimonials from people who share the same job function, or a pain point that’s similar to your target customer. Prospective customers want to hear from others that they can relate to. This can make the biggest impact on their decision to choose your product.

So, you may be thinking, That’s all great, but how do you find people who are willing to give these credible, consumable, specific, and relatable testimonials? And once you find them, how do you avoid getting vague or over-the-top testimonials?

I’m glad you asked. Let’s talk about how to get the best testimonials for your brand. I’ll break it down into two parts: asking for testimonials and then finding testimonials that already exist.

Here’s a checklist for getting incredible customer testimonials.

1. How to Ask for Testimonials

When you need to beef up your testimonials page, here’s how to find willing endorsements:

Via Email

Your email list is the perfect place to find testimonials for your product. If you’ve segmented your list into prospects and customers, consider emailing your current customers and asking for testimonials.

But don’t just ask for a testimonial.

A lot of people shy away from giving testimonials because they don’t know what to say. It’s a lot of pressure.

So, instead of asking for a testimonial, call it feedback. And then prompt them. A few questions you may want to ask:

  • What has been the biggest benefit of using our product?
  • What results have you seen since purchasing our product?
  • What would you tell other people about our product?

You can also reach out to trial users who haven’t become full-fledged customers yet. In your welcome email, ask for feedback:

  • Why did you sign up for our service?

This immediate request for feedback comes at a time when the user is very engaged in your product, so you’ll score a lot more answers.

When you receive feedback that you can use in a testimonial, shoot over another email asking for permission to publish their words as a testimonial. Keep it casual but grateful, for example, “Hey, thanks so much for your feedback. It was outstanding. I’d love to use your feedback in a testimonial. Here’s what I’ll use on my site: [their testimonial]. Would you mind?”

Chances are, they’ll agree.

Over Social Media

Ask for testimonials over social media. Here are a couple of ideas you can try:

On your Facebook business page, create a tab for collecting reviews.

Run a video contest where you ask users to explain why they love your product. You can offer a prize to the most creative video, but give everyone who participates a reward (such as a discount code, a free upgrade, or a free consultation).

In Your App

Prompt for reviews at the appropriate time during the user’s lifecycle. You should time your ask to coincide with maximum engagement, for example after the user has tested your product but is still invested enough to leave feedback.

2. How to Find Existing Testimonials

You don’t have to solicit all testimonials. Some testimonials exist without you prodding them. Here’s how to find them:

Monitor Your Name

Use a tool to monitor every mention of your business or products. There are a ton of social media monitoring tools you can choose from, such as HootSuite, TweetReach, and Social Mention. When you find people who have a positive review of your product, reach out to them. Ask if they’ll provide a testimonial that you can use on your site.

Review Sites/ Forums

Stalk sites and message boards populated by your users. When you see a positive review or shout out, reach out to that person and ask for a testimonial.

But, even though it’s tempting, don’t copy and paste any reviews you find on third-party sites. These reviews are owned by the user and licensed to the site that they are on, so you could get in legal trouble if you lift these reviews and place them directly on your site.

Your Blog

If you have a blog, the comments section can be the perfect place to find glowing customer testimonials. As a courtesy, you can also contact the commenter before displaying their comments as a testimonial.

Where to Display Testimonials

Now that you have testimonials, let’s discuss where to place them for maximum impact. While you may have a dedicated testimonial page, I suggest that you also place testimonials other places, too. That’s because not every prospect will see your dedicated testimonials page.

On Your Home Page

Proudly display testimonials on your home page. Think of ways you can incorporate testimonials to nudge on-the-fence prospects into trying your product.

canva

Image Courtesy of Canva

On Your Social Media Page

Integrate testimonials into your cover photo on your social media account.

On Paid Advertisements

Incorporate testimonials in your marketing campaigns on search engines and social media.

On Your “About Us” Page

Spice up your “About” page with testimonials that increase trust.

On Your “Contact Us” Page

Instill confidence before they contact you by posting up a few testimonials on your contact us page.

On a Dedicated Testimonial Page

How can I forget the dedicated testimonial page? Even if not everyone will venture over to see it, it’s still a good idea to have one if you’ve collected at least one dozen testimonials that meet the four requirements we discussed above.

docusign

Image Courtesy of Docusign

Additional Resources

Check out these extra resources before you go:

Don’t forget to download this customer testimonial checklist!

How to Use Email Remarketing to Boost Your Sales

Monday, April 3rd, 2017

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You’ve got a great product. You’ve built a website to showcase your product. And you’ve even paid for ads to build awareness for your product on Facebook and Google.

However, you have two major problems:

  1. Your product isn’t selling.
  2. Most consumers don’t buy immediately.

But don’t let that get you down because you’re about to use the powerful tool of email remarketing to change your luck.

Email remarketing improves sales. And it works for a wide variety of consumers — from cart abandoners to just browsers. Use email remarketing to convert the uncommitted.

Ready to learn what it is and how it works? Let’s get started.

What Is Email Remarketing?

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Email remarketing is the strategy of using email to target prospects and get them to buy. You’re probably familiar with it, even if you didn’t know it by name.

Have you ever looked at a product and even added it to your online shopping cart with intentions to buy it? But then you hesitate. You think, Maybe I can find this at a better price somewhere else. Or, Maybe I don’t need this product after all — what if it doesn’t work for me? So, you close the tab and move on. But then, as if by magic, an email pop-ups in your inbox: It says “Hey! You left something in your cart” or “Here’s why you should purchase this product now”.

Sound familiar? That’s an example of email remarketing.

Email remarketing is all about nurturing prospects and motivating them from interest to purchase.

But, although they may sound alike, email remarketing is not the same as email marketing.

In email marketing, you initiate contact. You send automated emails based on your desired schedule. Examples of email marketing include:

  • Weekly scheduled newsletters
  • A pop-up or flash sale
  • Blog post update

In email remarketing, your prospect’s behavior initiates, or triggers, contact. Examples of behavioral triggers include:

  • Cart abandonment (the prospect leaves your website before they can finalize payment)
  • Anniversary (the customer signed up / made a purchase one year ago, and you’re celebrating that milestone)
  • Upcoming renewal needed (your product needs to be renewed)
  • Subscriber hasn’t opened emails in the last 30 days

As you can see, behavioral triggers include both action and inaction.

By sending emails based on the prospect’s behavior, you can create a more compelling invitation to engage. People are more likely to respond when you send out a personalized email based on their activity than if you send out a generic one. For example, sending out an email that says, “hey, you looked at this product, now there’s a sale for it” is much more effective than sending out a generic “hey, we’re having a sale” email.

Email remarketing is wildly effective, but it’s also wildly underused. Only 1 in 5 email marketers use behavioral triggers email remarketing. And that’s why it’s going to be so effective in your marketing efforts.

5 Ways to Use Email Remarketing

Let’s take a closer look at how to use email to remarket to all those otherwise lost sales.

1. Convert Just Browsers

As I mentioned earlier, most people who come to your site won’t buy at first. That’s the bad news. The good news is you can start nurturing those people so that they will eventually buy from you.

The very first step is to get their email. Once you get their email and permission to market to them, you can put them in your nurturing funnel. And not just for generic marketing (i.e. newsletters), you can also use it for super-targeted marketing (we’ll discuss more in the Google section below).

But how do you get their email? Ask, of course, but with an offer that they can’t refuse. One of my favorite suggestions is to offer an instantly delivered promo or coupon code that they can use immediately (not within 24-48 hours).

Once they’ve signed up for your mailing list to get the coupon, automatically enroll them on a nurturing track.

Play up urgency. (Offer a juicy, high value coupon that expires within a few hours.)

Build trust. (This is where traditional email marketing comes in. Use email to share case studies and testimonials to show social proof.)

Here are 10 ways to get a site visitor’s email address.

2. Rescue Cart Abandoners

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By some estimates, cart abandonment is as high as 70%. That means that 7 out of 10 prospects have made it all the way to payment but then decided to leave without completing the purchase. Ouch.

There are a lot of reasons why people abandon carts. Among them are:

  • Unexpected costs (shipping, handling, etc.)
  • Just browsing (window shopping)
  • Technical error (browser, computer crash)
  • Long, complicated checkout process (too many questions)
  • Limited payment options (preferred payment method not available)

But another big reason people abandon carts is to get coupon codes. Some savvy shoppers know that cart abandonment triggers an automated coupon offer.

Why not give the people what they want? And most everyone wants a discount. If you can rescue sales by discounting the price, why not do so? If you discount by 25% to rescue the sale, you’ll at least get 75%. And that’s a whole lot better than 100% of zero.

Use email to remarket to cart abandoners. Send out an email immediately (within the first 60 minutes of a suspected abandonment) that woos the prospect back to complete the sale. Test the offers. Don’t default to 50% if you’ve tested and 25% works just as well.

3. Use Google

Google has a cool feature called Adwords Customer Match. It allows you to target ads to people on your email list. This is how it works:

Upload your subscriber email list. Then, Google will match the email addresses against their user database. If the email you have matches one of their users, you can then set up a campaign to market to them.

But, you’ll need at least 1000 email address matches to start a campaign. That means, if you have 1000 email addresses, but only 800 of them match a Google user, you won’t be able to start the campaign. This is done for privacy concerns.

If you’re able to use this marketing strategy, don’t be afraid to segment your list for the most effective remarketing. I like the idea of segmenting based on who’s already purchased your products. To those who’ve purchased, you can show them ads with a targeted upgrade to boost your sales. And for those who’ve browsed but not purchased, you can show them ads for a free webinar or product demo.

4. Get Them to Open Emails

Email marketing is sending out emails. Email remarketing is sending out those emails again, but this time with more of an incentive for the subscriber to actually read it.

When you send out emails again, you won’t be sending it to your entire list. You’ll only send it out to those who didn’t open the email the first time. Their inaction is a behavioral trigger. But of course, when you send out this time, you want to opt for a different subject line to pique their interest.

Then, there are those who open your emails but didn’t click on the call to action within the email. Target those people, too. Use a different call to action. Make the benefits of clicking obvious. Improve the incentive to click.

As a note, I’d recommend this type of email remarketing when you’re trying to sell a product, but it can also work for promoting your blog posts, webinars, and other causes, too. Just keep in mind that the more you saturate your audience, the less effective it becomes. So, use this technique sparingly for max benefit.

5. Upsell

We can’t talk about boosting sales without talking about upselling. Upselling helps you to make more from a transaction.

When a customer makes a purchase, send out an email offering a complementary or upgraded product at a reduced fee. Explain how this product can benefit the customer, but be careful not to downplay the product that they’ve already purchased from you. If you decide not to upgrade, you don’t want them to feel bad about what they’ve actually purchased.

Best Practices for Email Remarketing

Make sure to do the following when remarketing to your prospects through email:

Do it sooner rather than later.

Send your emails (or ads) as soon as possible in response to the trigger. For example, don’t wait days before you attempt to rescue an abandoned cart. The sooner you respond, the better your results.

Personalize your email (or ad) as much as possible.

If you know their first name, use it. If you know what product they were interested in, include it. Tailor your content to their behavior.

Incentivize action.

Use a promo code where applicable to motivate them to complete the call to action.

Make the call to action obvious.

Your prospect should know exactly what to do next.

Commit to A/B testing.

A/B testing helps you figure out what’s working and what’s not working in your remarketing efforts.

Get an Invite

Before you go, be sure to get an invite to Retained. With Retained, you’ll get special insight into your customers. We’ll identify your most successful customers, and predict those who are likely to churn so you can rescue them in time. Get your invitation here.

Don’t forget to download this list of 10 ways to get your site visitor’s email address.