When you automate the customer lifecycle, you save time, energy, and money while also driving greater client satisfaction. More businesses are recognizing this added value and investing in tools designed to automate the customer journey, making automation a part of their everyday business practices.
Research reveals a dramatic increase in the recent adoption of automation technologies. Some 73% of organizations reported using automation technologies in 2020, compared to 58% in 2019. The 2020 COVID-19 pandemic is one incident that spurred a sharp acceleration of automation tools usage.
About two-thirds (68%) of business leaders reported using automation to respond to the pandemic’s impact. Additionally, one-third reported speeding up their investment in cloud-hosted automation tools as a result.
You might be concerned that cutting-edge automation is too complex to integrate into your organization. Modern automation tools are so ubiquitous, however, that you likely already use them. If you’ve ever used software to schedule a social media post, for instance, or to trigger an email response to a customer inquiry, you’ve used automation tools.
To harness the maximum power of automation, you must incorporate such tools at every customer journey stage. Find out how below.
How to Automate the Customer Lifecycle
The consumer lifecycle is generally broken down into five distinct parts. Here’s how to automate the customer journey every step of the way.
Marketing and advertising help drive awareness about a brand, attracting potential leads. Tools like Google Ads allow you to set bid amounts according to how likely your advertisement is to get clicks and result in conversions. You can automate bidding based on factors like keywords to maximize results.
You can also use automation to track and nurture leads – and improve lead quality. Artificial intelligence allows you to automate lead scoring for faster and more effective results. AI quickly detects behavioral changes and can combine on-site data with third-party information to determine each lead’s viability. Automated lead scoring gives you more time to connect with leads personally.
Once you’ve won the customer’s attention, the consideration phase of the consumer lifecycle begins. At this point, the individual is assessing your company or brand to determine if they want to buy your products or services.
Say a consumer clicks on an ad and ends up on your website. An automated pop-up offering a freebie in exchange for their email keeps them on the page and grows your contact list. Ecommerce websites also provide a great example of how to automate the customer journey in the consideration stage: Many follow up via email if you’ve added items to your cart or basket but haven’t yet checked out.
If the consideration stage concludes positively, the potential consumer will decide to make a purchase. This is a landmark moment, as your lead has converted and officially become a customer. At this point, automation can help ensure a user-friendly and streamlined customer experience. Automated payment workflows ensure an efficient purchasing process, for example.
Following a purchase, an automatic confirmation email can provide the person with useful information, like an order number and customer support contact details. If the individual has purchased goods, an automated email can inform them when their order has shipped and provide a tracking number.
Once you’ve won over a customer, you want to retain them. Repeat customers are valuable because they don’t require you to invest in new lead generation, saving your company time and money. You can use automation to send re-engagement emails, for instance, with details about deals or promotions designed to recapture consumer interest.
Automation can also create a positive customer support experience, which is critical to getting repeat buyers. AI-driven “chatbots” allow for prompt answers to questions, for example, eliminating the need to wait on the phone. A quick response will improve customer loyalty. Interactive content like surveys is another way to connect with clients and nurture an allegiance to your brand.
The consumer journey ideally reaches advocacy once a potential lead has converted to a buying customer and has become such a loyal follower of your company or brand that they actively advocate for it. You can also automate the customer lifecycle at this stage.
Take social media, for example. Having existing consumers follow your social channels allows you to maintain regular engagement. You can use social media automation to schedule posts, giving your consumers the chance to repost, share, and like – all forms of advocacy. Such automated nurturing tools help keep an active conversation going between the consumer and the company.
We Help You Automate the Customer Journey
Automation can improve productivity, cut costs, and personalize the client experience. The above is just an overview of how to automate the customer lifecycle – not an exhaustive list of all the possibilities.
Televerde is a global sales and marketing company that can help you create more positive customer experiences through automation. We take you from the lead nurturing process to the final advocacy stage, improving your relationship with clients every step of the way.
Get in touch to discuss how automation can help you.