Imagine earning 6-7 times the business at a fraction of the cost, and capturing 10 times the referrals. You don’t have to imagine it. All you have to do is fall in love with your customers.
Valentine’s Day arrives and love is in the air. Do you love your customers? It’s fascinating to see the revival of customer service and loving your customer. Some of the most successful companies of our time obsessively focus on service.
Did you know that the probability of selling to an existing customer is 60-70 percent? Whereas, the probability of selling to a new prospect is much lower at 5-20 percent (Source: Marketing Metrics).
Let’s take a look at why this matters to you. Then you’ll learn a simple method of how to show your customers you love them. (Hint: It rhymes with “logging.”)
Loving Your Customers Gets Continuous Results
Have you ever gotten one of those emergency emails from a client? They typically start with “URGENT” or “HELP!!” I got one of those about two months ago from our best client.
When I read the subject of the email, “URGENT – Call me ASAP” my heart rate nearly tripled. I called and my fear quickly turned into joy (and a bit of confusion). Here’s how the conversation went:
Client: Can you take down the Open Enrollment blog? We are overwhelmed with responses. 150 already!
Me: You serious? Music to my ears :) Keep in mind it's typically not a good SEO practice to take down a blog. But if you REALLY need to take it down, not that big a deal.
Client: Yeah, we have too many to even get to before deadline.
We sent this blog in a newsletter to a list that contained all of their current and former customers. So how did one blog generate 150+ qualified leads? (Not too bad for an independent insurance agency.)
The short answer is that just one blog didn’t do that. It took several months of blogging to build up to the “take it down” blog. The truth is that we had a relentless focus on providing value to their audience and creating mutually rewarding connections.
We stopped trying to get attention, and started giving attention. We loved their audience by paying attention to what really mattered to them.
“Blogging is Important” ... That’s Common Sense
The other day I was waiting in line to check out at Ikea. The couple in front of me was anxiously reading the assembly instructions on the boxes of furniture they had picked out. They nervously asked the Ikea cashier, “Are these difficult to put together? Can we do it ourselves?”
The cashier smiled and asked them, “Do you both have college degrees?”
“Yes – I’m a Doctor and my husband has an MBA.” Replied the women.
The cashier paused, smiled again, and said, “Then you’re probably going to need some help.”
Not only did all of us get a good laugh, the experience reminded me of two valuable lessons:
- Just because something is common sense, doesn’t mean it’s common practice.
- Unexpected responses usually get a laugh, and attention.
You may be wondering how this is relevant to you.
Blogging is relevant to you because it gets continuous results for less money than traditional marketing, no matter what industry you’re in. Plus it provides an easy way to consistently communicate and provide value to your customers. It’s a great way to show the love! However, blogging will only get you continuous results if you follow a proven methodology.
How to Show Your Customers You Love Them
Before we get into the methodology of blogging, there are three key questions to answer before you even start blogging:
1) Who is your intended audience?
Get to know your customers. Ask them how you can make their life easier or solve a problem, then stop talking and pay attention. Once you understand your customers, their needs, their pains, their problems, then you can put together a plan and give them what they need.
2) Why will they want to give you their attention? How will they benefit?
Now that you know your audience and what really matters to them, you can show them you love them by providing them with something valuable. Give them something they can use to solve a problem or make their life easier and show how they’ll benefit.
3) How will YOU benefit?
Remember, in order for this to be a solid, loving relationship, it has to be mutually rewarding. Yes, your content should pay attention to the needs of your customer, but sometimes what your customers need is you! Wouldn’t you agree that the strongest relationships are mutually rewarding?
Now let’s find out how to use blogs to show your customers you love them.
Blog to Show Your Customers You Love them
There isn’t a ‘secret sauce’ to blogging successfully. It’s not rocket science. It’s simply showing your customers you love them by consistently delivering valuable content that solves a problem for them or makes their life easier. Eventually the law of reciprocity takes over; you gain their trust, and eventually their business.
Time to get into the weeds and provide you with actionable tips and key points to remember.
Universal key points for your blog:
- Be Consistent: We’ve seen the best results when our clients blog at least once per week.
- Deliver Value: Your audience only wants two things: To solve a problem they have and don’t want. Or to get a result they want and don’t have. The key is to deliver value and either solve a problem or get a result.
- Optimize: Make sure your audience can find your content by optimizing it. We recommend using keywords in the title, heading tags and meta description. We constantly use the SEMrush tool for keyword research and backlink opportunities. One of the first things we do when onboarding a new client is to use the Site Audit tool to uncover any errors so we can fix what’s broken.
Key points to remember for each individual blog:
- Format: We’ve seen the best results when your blogs are formatted the same way. We recommend using at least three images in every blog. Also, make your blogs easy to scan by using headings to break up the text.
- Distribution: Your website and blog are not the only place you should post your content. We’ve seen great results from posting blogs on sites like LinkedIn and Medium. And of course you should share your content on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and your Google+ Business Page.
- Call-to-Action: We recommend having a strong call-to-action at the end of every blog to capture leads. Offer something of value, a “lead magnet,” in exchange for their contact information. (Lead Magnet = an irresistible bribe offering a specific chunk of value to a prospect in exchange for their contact information. The goal of the lead magnet is to maximize the number of targeted leads you are getting for an offer on your website and other digital assets.)
Here are a few lead magnet formats you could use:
- Toolkit: Offer a set of tools to solve a problem your audience has.
- Resources: Offer a set of resources to get the results your audience wants.
- Checklist: Offer a step-by-step checklist that details how to accomplish something of value.
The next steps are quite simple. Just do it! Use the SEMrush tools to get keyword ideas and gather competitive intelligence. Then start blogging and sharing. Don’t worry if your first few blogs are terrible. You’ll get better with practice. Just make sure you pay attention to your audience and how they respond to your content. Take their response into account and respond accordingly.
If you have any questions or deep thoughts on loving your customers, feel free to leave a comment. Otherwise, just love your customers and they’ll love you back.
Hendrik de Vries is a cofounder of Mingle Media Marketing - a website design and usability agency. He's helped 100s of SMBs get continuous results whether working in Dallas or his motherland, Sweden.