Understanding and using marketing, advertising or sales touches are a straightforward way to build customer relationships and generate more sales for every business.by Dawn BrewerJul 8, 2009
An understanding of touches used by marketing, advertising and sales professionals could help every business to increase sales. The idea behind marketing touches is that both existing and potential customers are more likely to buy if they have a relationship with the business. Marketing contacts can be used to build a relationship.
A marketing touch occurs whenever the business comes into contact with a potential or existing customer. Typical examples of a customer experiencing these interactions include: a visit to the business website, an email received, a phone call, a recommendation from someone else, a newsletter received, meeting at a network event, having a client meeting, seeing an advert, etc. Every time a customer comes into contact with the business a marketing relationship can be strengthened.
Marketing and sales processes should take account of customer relationship management (CRM) and technology has advanced so that even the smallest business or self-employed professional has an opportunity to build, track and manage relationships with customers. For example, by using free CRM software.
A marketing strategy should include a plan to exploit the benefits of actively managing customer contacts as that helps ensure business success and more sales.
How to Use Marketing TouchesThere are three challenges to be addressed. Firstly, determine how many interactions are needed. Secondly, plan the actual sales and marketing contacts required and finally, monitor results and adjust the plan accordingly.
How Many Touches are Necessary?Different businesses and different industries will need a different number of touches before typical customers buy. Estimates vary from 7 touches to as many as 30 and working out what seems reasonable in a particular industry and specific business will help ensure future success. As a starting point, planning at least seven contacts is reasonable.
Plan The Contact MethodsThe next step is to plan the customer interaction, taking account of the usual marketing and sales processes in the business. For example:
Monitor Results by Tracking SalesThe final step is to monitor results and change the plan as necessary. For example:
Existing Customers TooRepeat sales are generally easier to generate than new sales, depending on the industry and particular business.
Marketing can also be used to remind existing customers about a business’s products or services, helping to drive repeat sales. A good marketing strategy would also include the marketing touches for existing customers.
Marketing touches can help build a strong relationship with existing and potential customers increasing the likelihood of making sales.