In an ideal world, a customer would see your brand once and go straight to make a purchase.
And sometimes this might happen, if you’ve targeted the right person with a message that’s super relevant and well timed. But we know it’s much easier said than done!
That’s where an effective and diverse customer acquisition strategy can help.
And with 73% using multiple channels to shop, your acquisition strategy is crucial to the success (or failure) for any business.
How do you know where, and how, to interact with potential customers? Especially with an ever-growing list of acquisition channels to consider.
In this blog, we’ll take you through some of the key channels to consider in your customer acquisition strategy.
- Free customer acquisition channels
- Paid customer acquisition channels
- How to find the right customer acquisition channel
Customer acquisition channels
Free customer acquisition channels
Not every business has a seemingly unlimited marketing budget to play with – you might not even have anything!
So, let’s start off with the “free” channels you can use to kickstart your customer acquisition.
Note: Although technically these are free channels, there are often some cost associated with them whether that’s specific tools you might need for publishing, monitoring and reporting.
Organic Social is a great channel to acquire customers.
It acts as a window into your business, allowing potential customers to see:
- who you are
- what you represent
- how other customers use your products
These channels are great for creating an affinity with your audience, leading to long-term customers. And when done right, can yield great results.
It’s important to bear in mind that you don’t need to be on every social media channel to succeed.
Creating great social media content can be time consuming. And what works on one channel doesn’t always work on another.
So, focus on the ones you have resource to create relevant and engaging content for.
And the ones that your audience actually use.
Organic Social channels to try
There’s often a lot of discussion around email marketing being ‘dead’.
And while regulatory laws like GDPR and industry updates like iOS 14.5 have dented the impact of email, there is definitely still room for it in your strategy.
Similar to Organic Social, email is a great tool to build an affinity with your audience.
It can be easy for brands to spam their mailing lists with offers, discounts and new product releases (and I know I see this a lot in my own inbox!) but it’s important to create a fine balance between sales emails and content emails.
Sending user generated content (UGC) about how to use a product, reviews and blog content are key for customer acquisition too.
Customers want to see real people with your products – not just a faceless company constantly appearing in their inbox.
Email tools to consider
Search Engine Optimisation
If your audience wants to find out more about a certain brand or product – where do they go?
And if your website isn’t there to provide the answer, you can bet your competitors are.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is crucial to ensuring your website is found by your target market.
So, optimising your product pages for the right keywords, creating informative blog content and finding bottom of funnel opportunities are key to success.
SEO tools to try
With the rise in remote working, online events have become a core part of the marketing mix.
But you don’t have to rely on a third-party to host these.
If you’ve got the time and resource, then running your own series of webinars is a great way to get in front of your target market.
They can be used to build out your brand as an authority within your industry, share the latest product news and releases or even showcase customer stories and reviews.
We’ve been running our own webinars for over 18 months now and have seen some great engagement from these.
Webinar tools to try
Paid customer acquisition channels
If you’ve got room in your marketing budget to try some new acquisition techniques, then these are the key channels to consider.
For brands that have the budget to play with, paid social is often one of the main acquisition channels to use.
It offers the opportunity to reach both brand-new users who have never come across your brand before – and those who have.
Certain channels let you target users based on the interests they’ve inputted into the channels, while also letting you import customer lists to target ‘lookalikes’ or do retargeting to those based on things like cart abandonment.
Paid social channels to try
Search Engine Marketing
Similar to Paid Social, Search Engine Marketing (SEM) allows you to reach potential customers who have never interacted with your brand before.
By targeting specific keywords, you can appear in the search results when a user searches for the right query.
Again, like Paid Social, it requires a significant amount of budget to be worthwhile.
Due to increased over-saturation within Paid Search, getting your ad seen requires either low competition (which, unless you’re in an extremely niche industry, is unlikely) or a high level of spend.
This is where you can combine your SEO and SEM strategies to ensure you’re only bidding on terms where you’re not guaranteed to rank well on the SERP.
SEM channels to try
Attending industry events are a great way to keep your finger on the pulse within your industry, understand what customers are looking for and to keep tabs on your competition!
But they’re also a great way to network and find new pools of customers.
Depending on the size and type of event you’re attending, it can be difficult to get your brand seen.
So, having things like giveaways, games and other interactive elements at your stand can be a great way to attract the attention of your target market.
Types of events to try
We might have a whole host of shiny new digital channels to try with our acquisition strategies, but sometimes the old ways still work best.
Depending on who your ideal customer base is, going down the more traditional route could be a winner for you.
If you’re targeting an older generation who you know read a certain type of newspaper or if commuters are part of your core demographic then doing print, radio and OOH adverts could be key to bringing in new customers for your business.
Traditional advertising channels to try
- TV advertising
- OOH / Billboards
- Radio advertising
- Newspaper/magazine adverts
- Direct mail
3 tips for finding the right customer acquisition channel for your business
1. Be where your customers are
Understanding who your ideal customer is – and the types of content they interact with (and where) will help you become more laser focused in your targeting efforts.
If you’re a B2C business, it’s highly unlikely that you’ll want to spend any of your marketing budget on LinkedIn ads.
If you’re a make-up brand targeting the 18-24 demographic, then TikTok could be a goldmine for you.
Unfortunately, there’s no one-size-fits-all strategy.
Perfecting your customer acquisition strategy takes time – and there’s always something new to consider!
2. Take learnings from your competitors
There’s no need to start from scratch with your customer acquisition strategy.
Take some inspiration from what your competitors are doing to inform your own strategy.
Before you start creating content and spending money advertising on the wrong channels, spend some time looking at:
- where your competitors are advertising
- what channels they focus on
- what content is getting the most engagement
Then you’ll have a good place to start.
Remember to also take equal notice on the content that isn’t driving engagement for them. So, you know the areas to avoid too!
3. Get a clear view of what’s working – and double down
Analytics and attribution have a big part to play in customer acquisition.
If you’re not tracking all of your activity, then how do you know what’s working? And more importantly, where you’re wasting valuable budget?
Accurately tracking the customer journey is far more complex than ever both. As your customers are zigzagging across multiple channels and devices, engaging with your brand a number of times before even clicking onto your website.
So, make sure that all of your marketing efforts are getting the credit you deserve through an unbiased analytics tool.
With a clear view of what’s working, and what’s not, eCommerce attribution allows you to then move your focus and budget into the channels and campaigns that are really working to drive growth.
Looking to boost your customer acquisition?
Get in touch to find out how Corvidae can help.