One of the most expensive pursuits in your digital marketing program is your customer acquisition.
Due to marketing distrust among customers and increasing competition across industries, it’s becoming harder and harder to get new business and leads.
That means that creating a strong strategy to bring in your audiences and convert them through your marketing funnel is essential.
An acquisition marketing strategy helps you get your initial prospects and leads to the next step of your marketing funnel.
By capturing customer attention and improving your conversion methods, you can create more engagement and encourage customers to move through your process.
That allows you to grow without spending all your marketing dollars on customer acquisition costs.
But what exactly is acquisition marketing, and how does it differ from brand awareness? What are the key channels to make your strategy successful and metrics to measure by?
In this complete guide, we’ll answer all these questions and provide you with the best tactics to improve your customer acquisition strategy.
What is Acquisition Marketing?
Acquisition marketing refers to the process of targeting and marketing to new audiences to gain new customers.
The type of leads that are the target of an acquisition strategy are in the consideration stage of the marketing journey, meaning that they aren’t brand new audiences who are unaware of your brand.
Rather, they are at the very top of your marketing funnel.
Top-of-funnel leads and prospects are aware of what your brand offers, but don’t have any specific loyalty ties to your company and are just as likely to take their business elsewhere.
By gaining the attention of these top-of-funnel leads, you can bring them into your sales and marketing process and convert them through your funnel to a customer.
An acquisition marketing strategy is the tactics and plans that you use in your efforts to help improve customer acquisition.
By taking the time to work through and plan your marketing, you can help to find areas to cut down on expensive customer acquisition costs and avoid spending too much without getting into the leads you need.
Acquisition Marketing vs. Brand Awareness
Acquisition marketing can often be confused with brand awareness. Both strategies work to target those early leads, but there is a difference.
Brand awareness strategies work to expand the brand name and get word of your business out to a wider audience. That often involves broad targeting to new audiences.
Acquisition marketing, on the other hand, focuses on leads that are already at the top of your marketing funnel.
That means that they are already aware of your brand and services, but haven’t taken any further conversions to start their marketing process.
That means that you can have a much more personalized and targeted approach.
Another key difference is the goal of the marketing strategies.
Brand awareness focuses on the brand itself. The goal is to make the brand name familiar and recognizable.
Acquisition marketing focuses on the customer. The goal is to reach out to the customer and bring them into your business, not make them aware that your brand exists.
Key Channels for Acquisition Marketing
Your acquisition marketing relies on a variety of channels to reach prospects and leads.
Channels are the platforms and methods that you use to reach out to customers and audiences.
Knowing which channels work best for which customers at which point in their journey is key to a successful acquisition marketing strategy.
Blogging is a great channel for acquisition marketing as it allows you to address a large number of topics and areas of interest.
When you run a well-organized and successful company blog, you can reach your top-of-funnel customers for relatively little cost.
It also helps you establish yourself as an industry and thought leader and build authority with your audiences and with search engine algorithms.
While a blog should be accessible to all audiences, you also can create content with a higher value add.
Creating premium content further establishes your authority as a resource for customers and draws them into your sales and marketing funnels.
Video and Visual Media
Video and visual media like images and infographics are great channels to get a lot of information across to your audiences quickly.
It allows prospects and leads to get a quick snapshot of what your message is communicating in an interesting and engaging way.
It also helps establish your brand as trustworthy, particularly if you have high-quality videos and visual media.
Social media is another example of a low-cost channel.
Social media allows you to create direct communication with your leads, prospects, and customers.
That helps you answer questions, reach out to target audiences, and tailor messaging to specific groups.
Social media also provides a platform for paid advertising to further expand your reach and get in front of more customers.
Once you’ve acquired the email of a prospect or lead, you can directly reach out to them through email marketing.
This is another low-cost channel that helps you stay in front of customers and make sure they receive critical information about your brand or offers.
It also helps you monitor the interest and status of your leads.
Search engine optimization, otherwise known as SEO, is a term used to describe the strategies you put in place to rank higher on search engine results pages.
That helps your content, products, services, brand, and offers be found by your audiences.
Focusing on your SEO allows you to draw in your audiences by getting in front of prospects and leads while they are actively searching for things related to your brand.
How to Measure Acquisition Marketing
Like all digital marketing strategies, you need to be able to measure and understand the reach and success of your implemented tactics.
Without knowing whether or not your efforts have been successful, you won’t be able to improve for the future or know what isn’t working.
By setting goals and then checking in to see whether or not you’ve achieved those goals, you can accurately measure your success and find the places in your strategy that still need to be improved or even dropped from your efforts.
Here are some of the best metrics to use during your acquisition marketing measuring:
- Visit Rate
- Lead Rate
- Offer Rate
- New Sales/Offers
- Revenue Increase
The Best Tactics to Improve Your Customer Acquisition Marketing Strategy
Now that you understand what acquisition marketing is, the right channels to use, why it is important to your brand, and how to measure success, let’s take a look at some of the different tactics you can implement to improve your customer acquisition marketing strategy.
1. Set Your Goals
As mentioned earlier, it’s important to set your goals while creating an acquisition marketing strategy.
That allows you to know what your targets are, so when you measure for success you can track to see if you hit the goals you set.
Setting clear goals is necessary to know whether your strategy is working or if you need to further adapt your tactics.
2. Define Your Target Audiences
Once you’ve set your goals, you need to figure out who exactly you are targeting.
Customer acquisition requires you to understand exactly who your leads and prospects are to draw them further into your marketing funnel.
Determine when someone becomes a lead and clearly identify who they are so you can target them accurately.
3. Estimate Your Customer Acquisition Cost
Another key step that needs to be taken at the beginning of your acquisition strategy is to know what your customer acquisition cost is.
Once you know what you currently spend per customer, you can then work to lower that cost through your strategic planning.
There are many quick formulas you can find that help you estimate your cost per customer.
4. Narrow Down Your Channels
As we discussed above, there are many different channels that you can use in your customer acquisition marketing strategies.
While you most likely want to use all of them, starting small is a great way to start narrowing down which channels can be improved and which are already performing optimally.
5. Optimize Your Website
Your website is the cornerstone of your brand and works as a lead-generation machine.
That means that optimizing your website can help bring in more leads and convert them into customers.
You can try tactics like pop-ups for email lists or special offers, having top, side, or bottom bars with offers and forms, or reworking the CTAs and flow of your website to improve the customer journey.
6. Use Content Marketing to Improve SEO
Content marketing and SEO go hand-in-hand.
While there are technical SEO tactics that take place behind the scenes, there are also ways you can use your content marketing to improve SEO.
Picking topics that are interesting to customers and get clicks, using keywords strategically, and providing in-depth, high-quality content all helps your content rank higher on search engine results pages.
7. Improve Social Media Marketing Efforts
While most brands understand that they need to have a presence on social media, not every brand knows the best ways to utilize those platforms.
Posting consistently, tailoring your messaging for each platform, including videos and graphics to your posts, and responding to comments and mentions are all part of a successful social media strategy.
8. Create Demand for Your Products and Services
Another tactic that can bring in more customers and move them through your sales and marketing funnels is creating demand.
If you have products or services that are part of limited time or special deals, it can encourage your leads and prospects to take action and make a conversion decision.
9. Build Sustainable Relationships through Customer Service
Customer acquisition goes beyond top-of-funnel marketing.
It requires every part of your organization to work towards the same goal of helping leads convert to customers and bringing them back to be return businesses.
Your customer service teams can help improve the experience along the way and make customers know that they matter to your brand.
10. Run Review and Referral Programs
Customers who are happy with your products and services often want to tell others about what your brand offers.
Taking advantage of that goodwill with review and referral programs helps to spread the work and let your leads and prospects know that your brand is recommended by others.
It also helps you create cyclical patterns with your customers and refill your top of funnel with new leads.
11. Make Your Strategy Flexible
Customer acquisition tactics can change regularly.
A channel that was successful last year might not bring in the same number of leads as it did last year, and a new tactic on a different channel might be more successful.
By making your customer acquisition marketing strategy flexible, you can adapt and change so that you don’t waste time or money on tactics that no longer work for your brand.
It also helps you meet your goals by being tactile and finding workarounds for issues.
Your acquisition marketing strategy is the core behind your top-of-funnel marketing efforts. Knowing the best strategies to add to your acquisition marketing efforts is an important step.
When you apply the right strategies in the right channels, you can cut down on your customer acquisition costs and bring more of your considering leads into the marketing and sales process.
In addition, by including different departments and teams, you can ensure that the entire journey is worthwhile for customers.
That means that your customers will be happy with your products and services, pleased with your entire organization, and more likely to return as a customer.
All this helps you lower your customer acquisition costs to grow without spending more than you need.
To learn more about customer acquisition, check out our blog on Calculating Customer Acquisition Costs.
There you’ll learn what your customer acquisition cost is, how to calculate your costs, and suggestions on how to reduce your costs. Click the link now to learn more!