People always want to know… if we try XYZ marketing tactics, when will we see results?
No matter how many studies are out there on the subject, it’s important to remember we’re marketing to real people here and people don’t always work on predictable timelines.
Sometimes to remind myself of this, I think about how marketing from other brands impacts me on a daily basis. I think about the different touch points that occur from when I’m first introduced to a brand and when I actually make my first purchase.
The other day I was stuck in a YouTube blackhole. I kept clicking on new videos after the one I was watching finished (a total productivity killer).
I typically hate YouTube ads and eagerly look for the skip button that pops up in the lower right, but this time I found one worth watching til’ the end.
It was advertising a Kickstarter project and after clicking through to their page I realized they had completely overshot their initial goal. I read the project details and within a few minutes, I was convinced that I needed this gadget too.
I happily coughed up $35 and went about my day.
Acquaintance to customer in under an hour. Pretty impressive.
This is a marketers dream, but it rarely works this way especially for products or services with a higher price point. Scarcity also played a roll here because I didn’t want to miss out on the campaign before it ended.
The other day I found myself needing a dog sitter. I’ve been a dog owner for over four years but I’ve always left Lyla with friends or family if I couldn’t take her with me.
Now that I’m in a new city, there’s nowhere within a short drive I can leave her for a week while I’m gone at a conference.
I ended up finding a sitter on Rover.com (affiliate link – you get $20 towards your first service). If you’re not familiar, it’s a site where anyone who loves dogs can sign up to be a dog walker or pet sitter in their hometown or city
Basically you can run your own mini pet sitting business on the Rover website and dog owners like myself can search for people in my neighborhood to come take care of my pet.
I booked my first pet sitter through Rover a few days ago so now I’m officially a customer. I even told a friend about Rover and she was really impressed. Within an hour she had signed up to become a pet sitter in her neighborhood (word of mouth in action). She quickly asked me how I had heard about them.
This made me think. When did I first learn about them?
What did my custom acquisition timeline look like?
It took me a minute to realize it had been over two years since I was first introduced to Rover at a networking event no less. I clearly remembered their bright green branding.
They were sponsoring some sort of entrepreneurial event in Seattle that I attended way back before I started working for myself. Nothing special about the event but I do remember finding them on Instagram shortly after and I’ve been following them ever since.
They haven’t stayed top of mind over the years but every once in a while I see the cutest puppy pop up in my Instagram feed and I can’t help but double tap.
Giving customers a channel where they can stay in touch with you is crucial to the relationship building process.
I prefer email communication (as a marketer) but I think social media plays a valuable role here especially when there isn’t necessarily a need for more formal communication.
Without Instagram in this case, I likely would have lost touch with Rover and forgotten about their service. I wouldn’t have shared the service with my friends or booked my first sitter.
Patience my friends, is key. It only took me a little over two years but I’m finally moving from the prospect stage to becoming a full-fledged brand advocate.
By consistently putting out good content, they kept me interested and engaged over time.
Good job, Rover :)
Next time you question how long it’s going to take for your marketing efforts to pay off, think about your own lifecycle as a customer.
Why did you buy that product? And how long did it take for you to become a paying customer?
Let me know in the comments.