This is the ultimate guide to the best customer acquisition channels.
The ideas you’ll discover in this content can be applied to your software company, startup, or B2B company.
Customers are key to any business growth.
Whether you spend months developing great marketing ideas or you expend lots of time and energy crafting the most perfect marketing strategy, without customers your business will not thrive.
Irrespective of the type of business model you’re operating or your industry, your business’ future growth hinges on one thing – the customer acquisition strategy and channels you deploy.
But we all know that acquiring new customers isn’t an easy feat.
Based on my experience from working with several different businesses (SaaS, B2B, startups) to acquire new customers, I’m going to share with you a comprehensive guide on customer acquisition strategy and channels.
This guide also explains the 13 best customer acquisition channels that you can deploy to improve your customer base.
What Is An Acquisition Channel?
To better understand what a customer acquisition channel is, it’s important to know what customer acquisition is.
Simply put, customer acquisition is the process of acquiring new customers. It involves finding, targeting, and persuading prospects to become repeat customers.
Repeat customers are customers that will patronize your business in a way that is repeatable and measurable, not random.
With the understanding of what customer acquisition is above, a customer acquisition channel can be simply described as any way or means through which businesses acquire customers or get customers to their website.
It can also be described as the channel through which website visits are acquired.
What Is An Acquisition Funnel?
Customer acquisition usually occurs in stages, which are often visualized as a customer acquisition funnel:
Customer acquisition funnel is a process of converting your target audience into customers.
Customer acquisition funnel describes the journey that a prospect takes and is often discussed in 3 main stages by marketers and entrepreneurs:
1). Leads (Awareness Stage):
This is usually the top of the funnel and starts with awareness. At this stage, your main goal is to create awareness among your target audience, who will subsequently show interest and become leads.
At this stage, the focus is usually placed on a large, broad audience that is likely to show interest in your brand, products, or services but with no definite intent to buy.
2). Prospects (Consideration Stage):
This is the middle of the funnel and starts with consideration. At this stage, the leads have taken a specific action that shows that they’re already considering a purchase and are prospective customers.
Prospects need a little push to convince them to become customers.
3). Customers (Conversion Stage):
This is the bottom and final stage of the funnel, where prospects are converted into customers.
At this stage, prospects must have taken some close actions that indicate a strong intent to buy.
These actions include signing up for a free trial or adding a product to their cart.
At this stage, business owners may send incentives, such as discount code, to convert prospective customers who are ready to make the decision to buy.
Although most customer acquisition funnels end at purchase, some funnels include “loyalty” and “advocacy.”
i). Loyalty: The loyalty stage is the stage of pure retention. It indicates the number of those who purchased your products or services and are coming back for more.
This includes the customers that yielded to upselling or make repeat purchases, subscriptions, etc.
Your sales and marketing effort should never stop at the point of purchase if you crave for business success. Thought this has always been the common mistake of many traditional marketers and has cost them a lot.
Profit wise, it is always more cost-efficient to sell to those who are already your customers as opposed to reaching out and selling to new customers.
This is because you no longer need to create awareness or nurture leads.
Only email marketing and fresh frequent offers are what you need to be doing here.
More so, reaching this stage has gone beyond developing strategies to reach out to customers alone, you must develop your brand into something these customers would like to be associated with.
Hence, you must focus on the following: your ethos and values, overall brand voice, impressive and engaging content, impressive customer service, etc.
Delight your customers and do everything possible to make them feel good about their choice.
Remember, there are so many choices or alternatives out there. Hence, having an outstanding product is the key to get you to this stage and stop your customers from deleting your app or walking away from your product shortly after giving it a try.
And again, it’s only at this Loyalty stage that you start making “real” money. So, if you don’t drive your customers this stage of the funnel, your business may have a serious issue.
ii). Advocacy: This stage is important if you want to make revenue. Your business begins to record an increase in revenue when your loyal customers are bringing in new customers (no marketing or acquisition effort from your part).
Although you may not be able to completely control “word of mouth” about your business, you can do your absolute best to digitize it.
You can achieve this by incentivizing online reviews or by offering a generous “Refer a Friend” program. Monat, a retail brand adopted this strategy and generated thousands of new leads and customers.
This will resonate well with your loyal customers and they’re likely to share your products or services with their friends.
However, the customer acquisition funnel has a few exceptions. Foremost, the shape of the funnel doesn’t actually illustrate the advocacy stage correctly.
This is because your business can start attracting advocates right from the conversion stage.
More so, the number of customers in the advocacy stage may be larger than those in the loyalty stage in some cases.
This is the major reason why some marketers and business owners prefer the bow Tie shape acquisition funnel.
However, it’s better to keep it simple and focus on acquiring the right customers instead of focusing on the shape of the funnel.
I hope this recaps how a marketing funnel for B2C startups should look like and it will help you build a strong marketing plan.
What Is Customer Acquisition Strategy?
As seen above, customer acquisition is critical to business growth and success and is the first stage of your sales funnel.
No matter how good or how well you craft the latter parts of your sales funnel, if it isn’t getting customers, you won’t have a B2B or SaaS company for long, even if you have a great product.
Buffer grew its customer/user base from 0 to 55k users and generated over $148k in recurring revenue within 10 months.
Same way, Zapier grew its user base from 0 to 600k users within three years. Within just two years, Slack grew its users from 0 teams to over 30k and was valued at over $1B. Do you imagine how they did it?
They didn’t just stop at creating good products that solved business problems. They took a step further to get the word out to their target audience – with great products, they still work to acquire customers. How?
Each of these companies developed a strong and unique customer acquisition strategy that helped them accelerate their user base and business growth.
Without a solid customer acquisition strategy, their “good and useful” products would have died.
So what exactly is the customer acquisition strategy?
A customer acquisition strategy is a set of activities that marketers and businesses use to acquire new customers or clients and involves the systematic use of acquisition channels.
A customer acquisition strategy is the process or steps you observe to convince your target audience to finally buy your product or service.
You may choose to test several customer acquisition strategies i.e. inbound strategies (such as content marketing, social media, webinars, etc.) and outbound strategies (such as cold outreach via LinkedIn, conferences, or email) and figure out which ones work best for you.
As mentioned above, you must devote both time and money to customer acquisition else you’ll likely miss out on lots of sales.
In summary, customer acquisition strategy encompasses all your efforts to generate customers from your target audience and drive them to the final stage of adoption and making a purchase, even to bringing in more customers.
Generally, the customer acquisition strategy involves a lot of touchpoints.
Nevertheless, all these touch points are geared towards nurturing your leads so that they’ll feel more comfortable spending their money on your business.
Steps To Develop a Winning Customer Acquisition Strategy
You need to understand that customer acquisition strategy is based on consumer behavior – how your audience interacts with your website, your emails, your social media channels, etc.
Once you understand all these behaviors, you’ll be able to optimize your website for conversions.
More so, you need to approach customer acquisition with a solid plan and build the foundation by developing a strong relationship with your target audience.
To help you improve your customer acquisition, here are a few steps to develop a winning custom acquisition strategy. Hopefully, this will give you to build sustainable growth for your business:
1. Build Strong Engagement with Your Audience
Except in rare cases, it’s very unlikely that a first-time visitor would stumble upon your website and instantly decide to purchase your products or engage your service.
The lead must have become fully engaged with your brand before he or she makes a purchase. Hence, to earn more customers, you must build quality relationships with them.
According to McKinsey, “over 65% of buying experiences are based on how the customers feel they are being treated.”
To better engage your customers, you need to know their pain points. Arrange informal conversations with your existing customers and have your sales and marketing team develop accurate buyer personas.
Nike used a similar technique to promote their mission of fitness, sports, and motivation. To their brand, everyone’s an athlete.
Another way to build engagement with your customers is through social media channels. Shoppers are always talking about the experience with brands every day. They’re dishing out the good, ugly, and bad comments on social media platforms.
With social media monitoring tools like SproutSocial, you can track those conversations and further strengthen your engagement.
For instance, cosmetics brand Sephora adopted the online forum to reinforce engagement.
Sephora offered expert advice, celebrity tips, and tutorials to its target audience, leads, and customers.
Building engagement on social media also delivers transparency to your customers and is a major factor in increasing sign ups.
2. Leverage Automation Tools
Developing a winning customer acquisition strategy doesn’t necessarily mean spending higher costs.
No! Learn to monitor and minimize your spending. One way is to avoid setting up a large sales and marketing team to grow a scalable sales model.
Use marketing automation software to nurture leads effectively. Tailor your marketing campaigns to move the audience through the acquisition funnel and leads through the purchasing cycle effectively.
With automation tools like Marketo and HubSpot, your sales and marketing team can improve email targeting, convert leads into sales faster, and align data with future projects.
3. Educate Your Prospects
Due to the advance in technology, people make sure to learn about products before they purchase. About 77% of prospects go online to research products before purchasing.
So, instead of persuading your prospects to buy your products, become their trusted partner. Develop plans to educate your prospects without the hassle of buying.
According to Deborah Shane, “without sales, there is no business. [Nevertheless] sales are an opportunity, not an obligation or punishment. It’s time to stop emphasizing sales and shift your attitude to educating your way into making the sale.”
When you share valuable and educative information, you are establishing your brand as an authority.
Prospects will see you as an industry expert and will learn to trust your opinions without the fear of being misled.
For instance, HappyFox adopted this style and created presentations to show prospects how to resolve their support thicket faster.
4. Offer Social Proof to Validate Your Product’s Value
According to Angie Schottmuller, “The social proof psychology principle says that when people are uncertain, they’ll most likely look to others for behavioral guidance.”
More so, research showed that “over 65% of consumers stated that they look at product reviews before making a purchase, and product reviews are 12x more trusted than product descriptions from manufacturers.”
Therefore, validating your product’s value with social proof is a great step to developing a winning customer acquisition strategy.
For instance, Crate, a content curation tool, understands the usefulness of social proof.
The company highlights reviews from satisfied customers on its website. The company did not only publish the quote but also added the name, photograph, and external link of the customer for authenticity.
Hence, as a SaaS or B2B business owner, don’t just claim to be the best in the industry. Back your claim up with educational materials, reviews, and testimonials.
5. Develop Partnerships
In this age, businesses no longer thrive in isolation, not even in our global economy.
Therefore, any business that wants to create a sustainable business model must build partnerships.
Aside from helping your business to reach out to new and more audiences, strategic alliances and partnering with other brands will help your business to do more with less.
For instance, Uber and Spotify partnered to give their customers the pleasure of listening to their favorite playlist while riding in a hired car.
The partnership added an exclusive value to Uber riders, while Spotify received a unique selling point for its members to upgrade their services.
6. Decide on the Right Acquisition Channel
Finally, you have to decide on the right customer acquisition channel to launch your acquisition strategy.
Even if you have the best acquisition strategy, you need ways to contact your target customers.
Hence, you must collect email addresses, conduct surveys, carry out research, and use analytical tools to find the right customers for your products. Segment these customers according to their behaviors, needs, and wants.
Then, use these characteristics to choose the right acquisition channels to reach your customers.
Best Customer Acquisition Channels
Customer acquisition precedes customer retention and effective customer acquisition requires effective acquisition channels. However, there is no one-size-fits-all acquisition channel.
There are several acquisition channels and the one you choose would largely depend on your type of business you operate and on your target audience – individuals, governments, SMEs, corporations, etc.
Another reason why you shouldn’t rely on a single channel is that a channel can get saturated quickly in your niche, leaving you to explore other acquisition channels.
It’s rarely possible for you to find a consistently-rewarding channel, hence, you have to try out several multiple acquisition channels, often simultaneously.
Here are 13 best customer acquisition channels you could consider when trying to acquire new customers for your product.
- Google Ads
- Content Distribution
- Content Marketing
- Business Development
- Direct sales/marketing
- Display Ads and Affiliate marketing
- Email Marketing
- Engineering as Marketing
- Facebook Advertising
- Landing Pages
- Public Relations
- Search Engine Optimization
- Viral marketing
Each of these channels would be discussed in detail below.
Customer Acquisition Techniques That Work
After launching your business, customer acquisition is necessary to build a customer base.
However, once your business has got a substantial number of loyal customers, customer retention should become necessary to consistently increase growth and revenue.
According to Forbes, “on average, 80% of a business’s income comes from 20% of its existing customers.”
However, studies revealed that “most businesses and agency clients have a greater focus on customer acquisition than customer retention.”
As a result, some SaaS and B2B businesses waste much of their time and money on quick fixes.
The truth is that with limited resources but a greater focus on the right strategies, your business can acquire more customers.
To develop the right customer acquisition techniques, you need to answer the following few questions:
- Are my products ready for all target markets?
- Is my server ready for high traffic?
- Is my support team well-qualified enough and ready to respond to customer queries?
- Would customers have a pleasant experience from my products and website?
If your answer to all the questions above is a ‘yes,’ then let’s dive into the customer acquisition techniques that work.
Although customer acquisition is not always an easy job, the following evergreen customer acquisition techniques and strategies will help you to attract your prospective customers and acquire new customers.
1). Find Your Target Audience
The first strategy you need to execute is to define and find your target/potential audience – the right users for your products. This requires a level of market research.
Your product may not solve every problem or be adopted by all and sundry. Nevertheless, it should be a perfect solution to the problem a certain people are facing – these are your target customers.
You only need to discover them and focus your customer acquisition efforts mainly on them.
If your product meets a universal need and you’ve got no competitor, then you’re better off not having a target customer in mind.
Otherwise, you will only be limiting yourself from marketing your product effectively and making more sales if you don’t have a target customer in mind.
More so, figure out who you should market your product to will help you to develop a solid plan on how you should market your product to acquire new customers.
Finding your target audience forms the foundation for other customer acquisition strategies. Without this, none of your other strategies would work.
2). Use the Right Customer Acquisition Channel
Once you’ve discovered who your ideal customers are, the next important technique is to know the right customer acquisition channel to use to acquire the ideal customers.
As a starter, it might take you a lot of experimenting to find the right acquisition channel for your customer acquisition.
However, to make things easier for yourself, set clear goals (even rough goals will help) for yourself and your acquisition campaign.
These goals will help you to understand or determine whether your chosen channel is working or not.
Once you’ve tested different channels against your goal, you will be able to compare successes from each channel to determine the best channel.
3). Leverage Video Content
Video content is on the rise. Tubular Insights showed that 64% of buyers purchased product/service after watching branded videos.
Bright Cove stated that videos drive over a 155% increase in organic traffic from Google SERPs.
As a result, over 80% of businesses currently leverage it, up from 63% from last year, because they’ve found video content useful to make customers better understand their offerings.
Generally, people are more visual learners. Studies revealed that the human brain processes videos about 60,000 times faster than text.
Therefore, videos are one of the best ways to inform your target audience about your brand and products.
Make your videos both informative and interesting videos. Explainer videos and customer testimonials are good ways to go about this. You can share these videos on social media, and on your website.
If possible leverage influencers to create such videos for your business. Smart businesses like Okta have benefited a lot from customer acquisition strategies like video marketing.
4). Consider Giveaways
Sometimes, attracting or acquiring new customers needs more than just words of mouth. Impressive promises are not always strong enough to convince prospects to buy your products, not even when they already have a trusted brand.
There are some naturally persistent leads that won’t even be influenced by your word-of-mouth or influencer marketing. So, how do you turn these “persistent” leads into loyal customers?
Giveaways! Yes, you should consider doing giveaways. Offer these leads a free chance to experience your products firsthand. You’ll be surprised that this would give them an extra push to seriously consider your product as an option.
One of the easiest ways to implement this customer acquisition technique is to run giveaway campaigns on social media.
For instance, Forever21, the famous women’s fashion apparel brand, leveraged giveaway campaigns on Instagram to drive target users through the sales funnel for any new styles it tried selling.
5). Leverage High-Quality Content
Creating high-quality content regularly is not only one of the most effective and evergreen customer acquisition techniques out there, but also one of the easiest.
Getting your prospective customers to trust your brand is very important and creating engaging content can help you earn the trust. How?
Content helps to establish your thought-leadership in your niche or industry or make you an authority.
A report by the Content Marketing Institute showed that content marketing is thrice as effective at generating leads and 62% less expensive than typical outbound marketing.
Hence, start a blog for your business. Create valuable, engaging, informative, and insightful content, share content on social media, and publish white papers where necessary.
Doing this is a great way to establish yourself as a trustworthy expert in your niche and industry, gain prospects’ trust, and drive your customer acquisition.
6). Run a Referral Program
This strategy is often considered as the major customer acquisition strategy, especially when you’re a startup.
Referral program involves offering your current users some incentives to incentivize them to refer your products to others.
Your current users may find your product useful and effective but may not reason it to tell others about your “useful” product but offering these users discounts, extra features, etc. for referring your products to others would motivate them to do so.
You can as well offer similar discounts to new customers to give them an extra push to consider your products.
This is a well-tried customer acquisition strategy that has worked for several companies including Dropbox.
Dropbox implemented a referral program where it rewards customers with an extra 500mb of storage when they refer a new customer.
To make the referral program pretty sweet, the new customer also gets an extra 500Mb of storage.
7). Improve Website and Email Engagement
This would be the last strategy to consider. While this strategy is as old as the internet, it remains one of the most effective customer acquisition techniques out there. You know why?
Your website is your online presence in front of your target audience. It’s the platform where you can promote your content and publish your product information.
More so, your website is usually the final destination of all your acquired customers where you can connect with and the last point where you want them to take that action – PURCHASE.
That is why you have to make sure that your website is improved and optimized.
Just as you would want your brick-and-mortar office to look appealing and conducive to visitors and customers, your website must look appealing, well-organized, and conducive to online visitors as well.
Secondly, nobody likes to receive an email that looks like a piece of junk, not even from a supposed reputable brand like yours.
So, a great way to go about this is to create a well-structured email on a responsive and adaptive template.
More so, send customized emails to your prospective customers based on which stage on the customer acquisition funnel they are.
For instance, target someone in the first two stages of the acquisition funnel with lead conversion email content or any other content that can initiate customer engagement.
While you can target someone in the final stages with promotional emails (offers, discounts, coupons, etc.) to tempt them into making that purchase. Amazon is very good at maximizing this strategy.
Amazon always sends out customized emails to their audience on each acquisition stage – whether to remind them about the items on their wish list, about an abandoned cart, or about reviewing the product they just purchased.
How to Get Customers Through Acquisition Channels
As stated above, effective customer acquisition requires effective acquisition channels and knowing the available acquisition channel will help you to determine which channel works best for you.
Here are 13 best customer acquisition channels you could consider when trying to acquire new customers for your product:
Remember, there is no one-size-fits-all channel and putting all your eggs in one basket as a prudent business manager is risky. Try as many channels as possible to choose the best channels.
1. Google Ads
This is also referred to as pay-per-click (PPC), cost-per-click (CPC), or social media marketing (SMM).
It is recommended for businesses (both new and old) that want immediate traffic from the audience with purchase intent.
Note that Google Ads may not generate immediate results, especially if people are not searching for keywords or search terms related to your business.
Nevertheless, this channel is a good way to place your product before everyone looking for your kind of product, especially those who are still exploring their options.
Though this channel can be adopted by new businesses (though mostly recommended for established businesses), it can be very difficult for newbies to manage this channel effectively.
As a result, new businesses must engage the service of a professional digital marketer to enjoy the benefits of Google Ads.
The success (visibility and clickability) of your Google Ads is largely dependent on your Ad Rank on SERPs and your Ad Rank is, in turn, dependent on your Quality Score and bid price.
All these make using this channel a bit difficult for new businesses.
When Upwork started in 2015 as an online freelancer marketplace that matches freelancers with clients, it adopted Google Ads as an excellent way to generate traffic and convert leads.
So Upwork set up the Google Ads PPC campaign to target potential customers to sign up (freelancers looking for work and clients looking for freelancers).
Through this Google ads campaign, Upwork’s user base grew to include over 357,000 active workers and 475,000 clients across 180 countries.
This helped Upwork to generate over $1.4 Billion in gross services volume in less than two years.
2. Guest Posting
This is another effective channel to acquire customers. Guest posting, referred to as content distribution, is one of the best ways to gain exposure as an expert, build your brand or business, and drive more traffic to your website.
Guest posting involves posting your content on websites or blogs related to businesses your target.
If you want to find customers among local businesses, you can focus your efforts on your local area, city, or country to generate a better result.
According to SEMrush, you can increase your ROI by as much as 24% through guest posting. Blog commenting is also a form of guest posting and can be an effective lead generator if rightly done.
For instance, this case study showed how a content writer generated over 2,200 visits to his website by just placing comments on other people’s blogs.
However, to benefit from this strategy, you need to find the authoritative website to post your content on. You can also try social media and forums like Product Hunt, Quora, Radar, etc.
More so, your content must not be spammy or salesy but must be of high quality and engaging enough to attract lots of traffic.
Using this channel is very simple and can be easily adopted by newbies and established businesses. You only need to begin the process with high-quality content.
3). Content Marketing
This is very similar to the guest posting channel discussed above. However, this channel involves placing the content on your own website.
You have to create compelling and engaging content that resonates with your audience will convince them that you are knowledgeable, helpful and are an authority in your niche and industry.
Remember, when people search for products related to your, it’s your content that comes up to inform them that you can offer what they want.
Hence, if you want to get noticed, you must devise new creative ways of presenting content.
Espiritismo.tv wants to generate more traffic to its website and also wanted to increase the time spent by viewers on its pages.
As a result, Espiritismo.tv developed content marketing and created high-quality content on its website.
After a few months, the number of visitors to Espiritismo.tv increased by over 198%.
Just as guest posting, content marketing channels are very easy to use by both new and experienced businesses. Only the ability to curate engaging content is required.
4. Business Development
Only a few businesses have realized that building agreements or partnerships with other companies is also an efficient way to acquire new customers.
Think about this channel as synergy. You will be able to combine products, share ad space, combined sales, and promote each other’s products.
Uber and Spotify used this channel to their advantage. Uber and Spotify went into business development to give their customers the pleasure of listening to their favorite playlist while riding in a hired car.
The partnership added an exclusive value to Uber riders, while Spotify received a unique selling point for its members to upgrade their services.
Using this channel is not difficult at all. Any two businesses can form a partnership to enjoy business development.
5. Direct Marketing
Here’s how Oberlo defines direct marketing:
The same thing as direct sales and direct mail, this channel is especially recommended for startups.
For new businesses, one of the best ways to acquire new customers is to sell to them directly. Although this process is not scalable, it’s okay at the beginning.
Direct marketing will help you to learn more about which marketing messages would work best for your business and how to position your product in real-time.
More so, meeting with customers physically or directly to market your product has one of the best business outcomes, which include brand building.
Movember and Whistl realized this and adopted a highly targeted door drop campaign to encourage people to grow and groom their mustache. The company adopted the intriguing ‘Shave the Date’ headline for its campaign.
Though the mail was sent to 250k households, Movember generated about 1,500 new clients.
That response rate of 0.6% isn’t bad for a startup. More so, the channel generated over 300 renewals from existing clients.
6. Affiliate marketing
This channel operates in a very similar process to Google Ads. However, ads are displayed on affiliate websites in this case.
This channel is okay if you have the budget. It is a good way to get people’s attention because of its retargeting nature.
Aside from using the Google Affiliate Network, there is also the option of Affiliate Marketing where blog owners create a storefront for you on their blogs or flavor their blog posts with links to product pages on your website.
There is nothing too technical about this channel as long as you can calculate your conversion rate and click-through rate.
7. Email Marketing
Email marketing is a very good channel to get useful information to your customers via personalized emails.
Whether you’re a B2B or B2C marketer, if you embrace email marketing, you’ll find that your efforts and financial investment will pay off big time.
This channel is estimated to get you a $32 return on every $1 invested.
More so, about 72% of the general public and about 86% of people who make purchases revealed that they prefer email as a means of business communication?
Email marketing enables you to bring your prospective customers back to your website over and over again without incurring direct marketing costs.
Aside from marketing, there are many other things you can do with the email, which include educating your existing customers, nurturing your leads, pushing conversions, driving traffic to your landing page, and initiating re-engagement.
When done effectively, email marketing can give businesses an ROI of about 4,300%. To increase sales, Dell adopted a “GIF-heavy” email marketing campaign. With this move, Dell’s revenue rose by about 109%.
This channel is very easy to use by both newbies and experienced businesses.
However, if you don’t have the time or necessary resources to manage your email marketing campaign, you can outsource it to a professional digital marketer.
8. Engineering as Marketing
This is a relatively new term in marketing but its operation has been in existence for long, especially among SaaS and B2B businesses.
HubSpot, RJMetrics, and Redhat are some of the SaaS companies and startups that have leveraged Engineering-based marketing.
Engineering as marketing is very simple and can be adopted by any business mostly those that deliver services.
It involves using engineering projects that provide value to your target market to draw new customers to your product.
For instance, engineering as marketing involves offering your expertise to a potential customer(s) while tying the success to the use of your product. A very good example is Hubspot.
Hubspot uses its Marketing Grader to freely review prospects’ websites and then suggests improvement by using their services.
9. Facebook Advertising
You may not need to explore this channel if your audience is not on Facebook, especially B2B and SaaS business owners. More so, enterprise-focused businesses shouldn’t consider this channel.
Otherwise, Facebook is a great platform for building awareness for your products and services – with daily active users of over 1.52 Billion and monthly active users of over 2.23 Billion.
Facebook advertising can help you to target your niche audience with precision.
More so, Facebook is very effective for engaging your target audience, reaching out to more prospects, advertisement, collecting reviews, etc.
Just like Google Ads, Facebook also offers an ads platform where you can promote your products and services to your target audience. Facebook Ads target your audience with your PPC ads in their news feed.
Cadbury raised its brand awareness with Facebook interest ad targeting and reached about 5.6 million people.
10. Landing Pages
With landing pages, you can create pages with clear marketing goals. These pages contain engaging content and clear CTAs that direct visitors’ attention to your website. Here’s an example of a landing page:
Landing pages are ideal for running promotions or a substantial amount of advertising.
However, the most important thing to note is that your landing page must focus on one goal
For instance, Betting Expert, an online sports betting site, wanted to increase sign-ups on its website.
It developed an enticing landing page with a clear CTA. The result was about a 32% increase in customer conversion.
11. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
This is taking advantage of what is commonly known as Google search. Almost everybody with Internet access turns to the search engine for answers.
So for your product or service to appear before those searching for it, you must have optimized its content through the process known as search engine optimization (SEO)
Optimizing your content simply means making the content more visible and accessible for searchers – in this case, your prospective customers.
Optimizing is done by using easy-to-understand hierarchy, well-placed relevant keywords, and captivating meta descriptions. SEO is free and easy and can be utilized by any business.
The American Egg Board (AEB), a business that connects America’s egg farmers with consumers and communicates the value of consuming eggs, relied heavily on organic traffic to drive awareness and stimulate demand for egg consumption.
However, its website showed declining traffic and organic visibility, year-over-year.
AEB revamped its website to make it more search-friendly, maximize visibility through SEO Strategy, developed an integrated site-wide keyword strategy, uncovered user intent and organized the website’s content, improved UX, and removed and merged sections of the old website to support keyword strategy.
The SEO process improved the overall ability of AEB’s website to improve the visitor experience.
The company experienced an 87% increase in mobile traffic, a 22% increase in website traffic, and a 39% increase in recipe sharing.
This involves getting your brand, product, or service mentioned in traditional media outlets, such as magazines, newspapers, radio, and TV.
Though this channel can be very effective, it is location specific and the impact cannot be measured.
The Clorox Company has been using radio, television, and newspaper ads to sell its products to date and it has been working for them.
13. Viral marketing
This is the last and of the most viable customer acquisition channels. This channel relies on the success of your acquisition funnel.
Viral marketing is a process whereby your current and loyal customers bring in new customers
This channel does not require you to spend additional money on marketing or advertising. Viral marketing happens in many ways, such as
- Word of mouth
- Incentives, etc.
This is a well-tried customer acquisition channel that has been working for Dropbox.
Dropbox implemented a referral program where it rewards customers with an extra 500mb of storage for viral marketing.
Viral marketing can be adopted by all forms and sizes of business. It only requires you to develop strategies to drive your customers successfully down the acquisition funnel.
Average Customer Acquisition Cost
Customer acquisition is important for business growth and every business wants to get as many customers as possible. However, this doesn’t mean going broke in the process.
A crucial metric to track your customer acquisition is customer acquisition cost (CAC). So if you realize that you’re losing money on every customer you bring on board, you can’t achieve sustainable business growth.
In a nutshell, customer acquisition cost refers to the cost to acquire an actual paying customer.
Mathematically, “CAC is equal to the amount spent on sales and marketing divided by the number of new customers during the time period that you are measuring.”
For better understanding, let’s consider this example:
If your company spent $100,000 on sales (mainly sales team salaries) and marketing (Google ad spend, Facebook ads, content creation, marketing team salaries) from July to December 2019 but made 10,000 new sales during the same time frame, then your CAC is $10.
How did you get that?
Dividing $100,000 (on sales and marketing) by 10,000 (number of sales) gives 10, so for this time period, your CAC is $10.
However, before diving into what CAC is good for your business? It is important to understand how CAC relates to your profit and this brings in the understanding of LTV.
LTV is the amount of money you realize from a customer over the period of their entire relationship with your business.
For instance, as a SaaS business, LTV is the total amount of revenue you can expect from a subscription before a customer churns. LTV is calculated as:
LTV = (Average Revenue per User (ARPU) x Profit per User)/Churn Rate
Your LTV to CAC ratio is a great metric to measure the health of your business because it gives insight into your business’ overall efficiency.
A lower ratio (for instance 1:1) signals you’re going to lose money. While a higher ratio (for instance 5:1) can signal you’re expending too much money. An ideal ratio is 3:1.
Considering the good CAC for your business, there is no particular number that is good for your business. However, here is the industry average you can use as standard:
- Across All Industries: $75.51
- Auto: $23.68
- B2B: $130.36
- Consumer Services: $60.48
- e-Commerce: $65.80
- Industrial Services: $51.58
- Technology: $103.60
- Technology (Hardware): $182
- Banking/Insurance: $303
- Technology (Software): $395
B2B Customer Acquisition Tools
Customer acquisition is essential to your business growth but that doesn’t mean you should expend all your effort on customer acquisition at the expense of other necessary business operations.
There are many B2B customer acquisition tools on the market to help you improve your efforts.
Here are a few tested B2B customer acquisition tools that you can use to your advantage:
1). Unbounce: Unbounce is a landing page software that gives users the flexibility to build, launch, and test high-converting landing pages, sticky bars, and popups through a drag and drop builder.
You don’t need to learn how to code or hire a developer to use Unbounce. The cost of using Unbounce starts from $79/month.
2). GetResponse: GetResponse is an all-in-one online marketing platform with features like email marketing, marketing automation, and webinars.
The software helps you create high-converting landing pages, plan customer journeys, and improve customer experience. It cost just $15/month.
3). ReferralCandy: ReferralCandy is a referral marketing and customer acquisition management tool that incentivizes customers to promote a brand or company’s products within their network.
It’s basically word-of-mouth marketing on steroids and costs $49/month.
4). OptiMonk: OptiMonk is specially designed to look into why visitors leave a website without taking action. It is an exit-intent pop-up tool designed to help merchants capture abandoning visitors.
Recently, it expanded its offerings with a toolkit that let users increase their subscribers, aggregate feedback, improve conversion rate optimization and reduce shopping cart abandonment. Using this tool costs $29/month.
5). Drift: Drift turns conversations into conversions.
Instead of traditional marketing forms and sign-ups, Drift’s chatbot connects your prospects with your sales reps. The chatbot then asks qualification questions based on what matters most to your business.
This can exponentially cut weeks or days from the sales cycle since your sales rep will only be in touch with good prospects. Using this chatbot starts from $0/month.
Customer acquisition is the process of convincing people to buy your product or service. Does that sound easy? Customer acquisition isn’t as fast and easy as you think.
For effective customer acquisition, you need a sound customer acquisition strategy in place.
This will convince website visitors to actually make a purchase.
More importantly, understanding customer acquisition strategy and choosing the right customer acquisition channels can help you build a more stable business.
With our guide above, you would have learned how to define a customer acquisition plan, estimate your customer acquisition cost, define your target audience, and start using acquisition tools so you can optimize them.