A data-driven driven approach to win back lost customers

Three ways to get lost customers back

Businesses lose customers daily. It happens so frequently that, in truth, you should be planning for it. This means modern marketers must have a strategy for re-engaging lost customers.

If you’re a marketer currently seeing less response and revenue from past clientele and are looking for guidance, consider this three-pronged approach that can (and should) be repeated over the course of each year:

1)      Identify your best channels of communication

2)      Optimize your content

3)      Examine your conversion channels

Utilizing this data-driven approach to re-acquire inactive clients can boost your overall sales, provide positive interactions with your brand and establish a more lasting relationship with loyal clients.

Identify your clients’ favorite marketing channels

It’s challenging to know which screen a consumer is using to surf the web, buy products or communicate with friends, family and coworkers. And, even if your media is available across multiple screens, consumers may not be responding to your traditional marketing channels anymore.

Marketers need to constantly re-familiarize themselves with their customers as marketing channel preferences continue to evolve and expand. The first step to winning back lost customers is to assess which marketing channels work and which are not as relevant for your specific audience.

For example, you may find that some of your past best customers are now members of your “inactive” email file. You decide to try and re-engage these customers on Facebook and want to target them with an offer for coming back. You choose to utilize Facebook but don’t know that 75% of your inactive file engages with internet radio and is receptive to display advertisements.

Start by examining the inactive customer segment’s channel receptivity and then proceed to the next step.

Engage your customers with mixed motivational messages

You may notice some similarities among your best customers and your inactive customers. The difference between the two may simply come down to motivation. Marketers need to take into account the fact that even similar consumers can be engaged in vastly different ways.  Incorporate motivational messages that will resonate for each type of customer.

Your best customers of late may respond to a combination of last-minute deals that incorporate a sense of urgency in their messaging. On the other hand, your lost customers may like to take time to shop, and are less willing to risk their buck on a spur of the moment purchase they felt pressured to make.

Consider how your lost customers may respond to different kinds of messaging.  Consumer research data and traditional A/B testing remains important as ever. Find out what motivates your customers, then proceed to step three.

Make your products available via your customers’ channel preferences

Assuming you’ve now familiarized yourself with your lost customers’ channel preferences and key motivators, take into account where they’re most likely to convert. Think about how quickly the consumer marketplace has grown to incorporate instant gratification into its lifeblood.  If your product isn’t available where your lapsed customers are most comfortable purchasing, step up to the plate.

When a consumer finds something they want, they want it now and they need to be able to make that transaction quickly. The path to transaction needs to be fluid, free of distraction and available in the channel your inactive customer prefers to transact.

The final step in regaining lost customers is to make those purchase points relevant to where the consumer wants to buy. Maybe they like to purchase in-store; incentivize them to do so. If you get your hands on purchase channel data and learn that easy, online, one-click transactions are the preferred way to transact for your former best customers, send them an email with a product that they can purchase straight from their inbox.

The path to re-engaging lost customers involves communicating  in their preferred marketing channels, using messages that resonate and motivate and making your product available where your customers like to purchase.

Use a data-driven approach to earn back your lost customers’ business.