Author: Ville Immoenn / Head of Sales & Marketing
Date: 2021-09-23

Creating New Customers: The Process Of Growth

You've heard it before: "It all starts with a customer." 

That's true, and in order to be successful, you need to ensure that your company is focused on growth. Growth means more customers, which can lead to increased revenue for the company and more profits. But how does this happen? Internet is full of articles talking about how you can create growth for your company. I'll try to summarize my learning and give personal opinions that I have heard on this topic and try to concretize them to a couple of steps that companies can take to grow their business? Let's explore these questions below!

The very essence of every business is to innovate and create new customers. That's it. It sounds simple, but that's at the same time one of the most challenging topics that every company struggles with. So how do I innovate to be ahead of my competitors and create new customers that I can grow as a business?

This article will focus on how creating a new customer can also be seen as a process, almost as a journey. And this process can be split into multiple phases, which companies should more efficiently utilise when planning different growth activities.

The Process of Growth  

Let's start that growth is a process. It's a multi-dimension process that touches people, business processes, technology and leadership. It's easy to talk and demand growth from your organisation. Still, if you cannot understand how you can create new customers, it's nearly impossible for an organisation to focus on the right actions that enable growth. This process should be divided into sections between marketing, sales, operation and any business functions required to understand how customers go through the acquisition process. For companies, the main goal for this process is to build actionable actions that focus on maximising the number of customers that go through this process. In all essence, it's simple as that, but like mentioned, one of the hardest for most companies.

Understanding how customers go through this process helps companies to grow sustainably by solving customer problems and not by blindly chasing growth at all costs.

Therefore each company should review their process of creating new customers from the perspective that, 

  • How can I make sure that I understand how my customers enter this process? and how many go through this process?

  • How many drops off from this process, and when?

  • How much revenue does it mean if all users go through the process and if they don’t? Or at a certain point of the process?

  • How does my existing technology and data support my business units to understand this?

Let's explore these topics more closely.

How can I make sure that I understand how my customers enter this process? and how many go through this process?

The majority of companies have different technologies to support their customer acquisition process. We commonly see this as a static process where either sales or marketing personnel controls the progress of the process. This can be problematic because then the process becomes linear and not dynamic. To find out how your customers are entering this process, you need to know where they come from. You should have conversion points in place that help with customer acquisition strategy measurement and understanding metrics.

For example, if someone comes from an email campaign or marketing efforts, you want to know if they enter at the top of this process or from a different point.

If you want to determine how many customers may have entered into the entire customer acquisition process, it is best to look for where you see them leave. Unfortunately, this can be difficult because often, someone enters and goes multiple times to finally purchase your product/service. 

But this comes essentially for your business to understand your customer behaviour in real-time that you're able to orchestrate their behaviour and maximise their pass-through on your acquisition process.

How many drops off from this process, and when? 

To successfully acquire new customers, you need to understand where there are drop-offs in the customer journey and what can be done at these points to rescue your potential customer back to the acquisition process. 

A drop-off point in the customer journey can be because of several reasons. Still, one most common reason for this is that your company's inability to communicate with the prospect successfully during the right time of their journey. Remember that here the keyword is THEIR journey, not your process. Here I see most of the mismatches happening that we tend to build our processes from our perspective that how we as a company want to communicate to our potential customers and when all should happen from customers terms, where we have the capabilities to respond accordingly.

There are also other factors that can lead to a customer drop-off point, like if they don't have the time or resources needed for your product/service and/or there is no need at this moment in their life cycle, depending on your business that is not alarming because we know that some customers need time to confirm their needs for the purchase. But you need to know that you can target them with the right content that serves them. Not the generic messaging that only confuses or upsets the potential customer.

The biggest key in customer acquisition is having an understanding of how customers pass through your customer acquisition process. This understanding can help you identify drop-off points, allowing you to rescue potential customers and get them back on track with this journey.

How much revenue does it mean if all users go through the process, and what does each drop off mean to me? Or at a certain point of the process?

We should always think about our acquisition process in terms of revenue. How much revenue could we generate if all potential customers would go through this process? If 10% drops off at the beginning of the process, what does that mean in lost revenue? 

I believe that this should be the logic that all the companies should drive their business through customer journeys. Yes, it's essential to define many other factors during the journey like customer experience, personas, i.e. Still, in the end, from a growth perspective, the only thing that matters is how many customers go through the journey.

Therefore, we want to quantify the journey to revenue that we concretise our actions based on the data and real-time events to create actionable activities that bring direct results.

The most important thing is to take action. If you want to build an intense customer journey, think about what you do and what your customers need. Once you have done this, make sure that all of these actions are built on top of analytics data and real-time events because it will help you to measure the progress throughout the process.

How does my existing technology and data support my business units to understand this?

This leads to the question of how your existing technology supports creating company-wide visibility of your customer's journeys? How is your data supporting the visibility of the customer acquisition process?

We call this customer journey orchestration, and it starts in context from the point that we need to understand how we acquire our new customers. To do this, we map existing technologies and data according to these processes - everything from marketing channels to sales. Sales need this knowledge so they know which channel converts better or when it's the right time to approach potential customers and schedule their time to be more efficient. Marketing needs it so they have a clear understanding of where their leads come from and what channels should be prioritised for promotion materials, campaigns, or social media posts.

Customer Journey Orchestration is a unifying technology that connects customer journeys across all interactions and organisational silos. This process is meant to give each customer a customised brand experience that will differ from one another. Ultimately, customer journey orchestration is about creating better communication between all parts of the business so that each customer has an experience tailored to their needs.

Recently an Aberdeen Group research paper found that companies with a formal customer journey program experience year-over-year growth that includes:

  • 18X faster average sales cycles,

  • 56% more cross-sell and up-sell revenue,

  • 10X improvement in customer service costs,

  • 5X more significant revenue from customer referrals,

  • 54% greater return of marketing investment (ROMI).

Companies are noticing to start accelerating their growth when they take the time to understand how customers go through their customer acquisition process. It's crucial for companies to know which parts of their customer journeys are dropping off in order to rescue customers and get them back on track. 

It's also essential that companies act on these thoughts and get started with customer journey orchestration. Journey orchestration is a unifying technology that can connect customer journeys across all interactions and organisational silos, leading to better communication between business units. This is a process designed to give each customer an individualised experience that will reflect the different needs of the customers.

The most important thing is to take action and ensure that all your efforts are based on analysed data and real-time events. Once you have done this, ensure that all activities are based on your existing technology and data to create company-wide visibility of the process.

Ultimately customer journey orchestration is about creating a better experience for customers while also boosting sales and revenue.

Our team at Edita Prima would be happy to help you meet your goals by providing expert assistance around your journeys and growth initiatives.

Contact us today if you have any questions about how we could help you.

Comments are most welcome and appreciated