In Stay Top of Mind When You Can't Meet With Clients Part 2, we focused on maintaining your website and gave tips on how to optimize your digital presence in order to stand out in the aerospace and defense industry. Part 3 is about maintaining touchpoints with your audience on their customer journey.
The Customer’s Journey
Hubspot, the marketing, sales, customer service, and CRM software, defines touchpoints as any “interactions between businesses and customers that occur during the customer's journey.”
Typically, the customer journey can be broken down into three stages. You can see them here with examples of the touchpoints made in each stage. Review this list and mark off those that you do versus don’t. You will quickly see where you have focused more of your energy and where you need to increase in order to have a more comprehensive journey mapped for the client.
- Social Media
- Online/Print Advertisement
- Blogs + Emails
- Company Events
- Community Involvement
- Product Catalogs
- Self-Service Resources
- Customer Service
- Product Catalogs
- Point of Sale
- Company Emails
- Billing Actions
- Customer Onboarding
- Self-Service Resources
- Thank You Letters
- Feedback Surveys
- Billing Actions
- Subscription Renewals
- Loyalty Programs
- Online help center
- Upsell Emails
Maintaining robust touchpoints with your audience throughout their customer journey is crucial to staying top of mind, making a sale, and creating customer loyalty. For the sake of this blog and the extenuating stay-at-home circumstances of COVID-19, we will be focusing on the 'Before Purchase' touchpoints that are virtual.
Maintaining ‘Before Purchase’ Touchpoints
1. Travel Through the Customer’s Journey.
It’s easy to create a path you think customer’s will take through the sales process, however have you walked it for yourself? For example, two of the ‘Before Purchase’ touchpoints are social media and online advertisements. Have you looked at them through your ideal customer’s point of view?
- Social Media: Are your accounts updated and relevant? Share helpful resources from your relevant blogs and other industry experts to your followers and interact and engage with other accounts. When sharing content, don’t forget to add your own comments to the caption. Adding your own take or perspective allows you to make it relevant to you and therefore potentially more appealing to your audience.
- Advertisements: Advertise in quality publications with known expertise and quality sources of info in your industry or set up a PPC campaign through Google and advertise with relevant keywords. Make sure that your company stays top of mind when a client has a need - and when they Google it.
2. Optimize Methods of Communication
Whether it be social media and online advertisements as in #1, there are numerous channels of communications with different target markets preferring different channels. It’s vital to create a strong presence in the ways you’ve researched and identified to be the ways your ideal consumer communicates. Due to the coronavirus and the inability to meet in-person, we have the unique opportunity to focus solely on virtual methods of communication.
For example, email marketing. Always, always, always ask for your customer’s contact information. Email addresses are particularly useful because you can regularly be on top of their inbox - aka: top of mind. If you don’t have an email subscriber list, start one asap (never send emails without first receiving permission); it’s easy to do and can be something that is easily added to your website. Send out meaningful emails, and not just sales pitches. Give your subscribers access to relevant content (see bullet point #1) or let your subscribers in on what is happening at your company, any new announcements, or products. This will maintain your reputation as an expert and not a pushy salesperson.
|Side Note: Emails are also linked to social profiles. Using this information, you can track customers across more than one platform and multiply your touchpoints.|
For more on optimizing your website, digital presence, and online communications, read Stay Top of Mind Part 2 here.
3. Measure Your Touchpoints
By collecting performance data, you can better manage and maintain your touchpoints. With this information, you can see how each channel is performing, compare it to other channels, and make better financial decisions when investing money in those touchpoints; easily identifying which perform better.
- Social Media: In terms of collecting the data for your social media activities, your analytics, interactions, and direct conversations can give you the edge on how to answer your customer’s questions with your content marketing and social media ad targeting.
- Online Advertisements: When measuring the performance of online ads, UTM Codes combined with Google Analytics provide metrics that better explain the quality of the traffic coming from a publication. These metrics include: Bounce Rate, Average Session Duration, Average Pages Per Session, Conversions (if applicable), New Traffic, and Total Sessions. Through these numbers we are able to assess true audience interest, leads, and publication value.
- Email Marketing: Programs such as Hubspot, MailChimp, or Constant Contact can tell you which customers clicked, forwarded, or deleted your email. With this data you can see who is on what part of the customer journey, understand what your customer’s need from you, and optimize touchpoints for where they’re at.
What are your competitor’s doing to maintain touchpoints with their customer’s? Have you researched your competition enough to see what they do? Try signing up for their marketing information through their website.
Aerospace and defense sales demand successful strategy and now, more than ever, is the perfect time to walk through the customer’s journey yourself to see if it’s working, optimize interactions, and measure what’s working and what’s not.
About Aerospace Marketing Lab
Aerospace Marketing Lab brings more than 20 years of complex aerospace marketing, sales, branding, and development experience and insight to every customer. We understand aerospace’s complex marketing and sales models. We use this insider knowledge to break boundaries, optimize strategy, and raise aerospace and defense clients to the next level.