In the A-B-Cs of Marketing for Non-Marketers, U is for UX or User eXperience. User Experience is the total experience a customer has with a brand from discovery to after the purchase. A crucial part of providing a rememberable UX to your customers, whether you're business-to-consumer or business-to-business, is providing continued service after the sale.
You can provide service in two ways. Actively, through phone support, e-mail support, walk-in service at a physical location, or even visiting your customers at their home or place of business. You can also provide support passively, using Evergreen Content. That could be a FAQ on your website, how-to information on social, or even a brochure included at point-of-sale.
Active service is the best approach because it provides you with a Brand building customer interaction. On the other hand, active service is more costly and more time-consuming. If you're selling big-ticket products or services such as real estate, financial investment, or large commercial equipment, an active service model makes sense. However, if you sell a commodity product or service, or have a large number of customers compared to your employees, a passive support model makes a lot more sense. In a perfect world of unlimited resources, you would do both!
If you're a small business owner and want to build more brand loyalty, creating passive service tools is a great way to start. The best part of all, you probably have all the knowledge you need right now in your head.
Frequently Asked Questions - FAQ: Having an FAQ on your website is a great way to build passive service and brand loyalty. Your clients can self-service 24/7/365, and it is another visit to your site. Your FAQ can include basic care, use, how-to, and service information. You don't have to write an entire knowledgebase. You already know the questions your customers ask, common reasons you have returned goods, and how to extend the life of what you sell. Here is a pro tip, have a way for your clients to contact you if they can't find the answer to a question on your site. If you get that same question repeatedly, your clients will guide how to update your FAQ.
Check out the minimalist FAQ from Microsoft.
Check out the FAQ on McDonald's site, which frequently comes up as a best practice example.
Social Media: Social Media is a great way to share information for basic care, use, how-to, and service information. For example, you can use YouTube to build a collection of simple videos. On Facebook, you can use an announcement post to list an FAQ. Instagram? Send out a tip a week. All of these ideas you can start doing today, are brand building and create engagement. Is engagement good? Yes! Yes, it is.
Brochure or Flyer: For some brands, offering a physical piece of content might be the best way to provide service after the sale. It doesn't have to be elaborate, but it should include your brand, how to contact you and be free of errors. For example, if you own an auto detailing business, you could provide a small brochure or flyer with how-to information on keeping their car clean. Offering information after a sale or service is a great way to provide evergreen thought-leadership content while building your UX. Want to add another touch? Maybe a coupon on the brochure for a discount within a specific time?
You don't need an elaborate marketing team to build your passive service content, there are plenty of free tools available:
Canva: Their mission is enabling you to design anything and publish anywhere. You can print and have the brochures dropped shipped right to your business.
Adobe Spark: Their mission is enabling you to unleash your creative potential with professionally designed templates to take your content to the next level.
Vistaprint: Their mission is to help small business owners create expertly designed, up-to-date custom marketing.
Lucidpress: Their mission is to make it easy to create stunning brochures inside your web browser.
Grammarly: If you're doing any writing for your business, even if you have your Masters of Arts in English, start using Grammarly. It doesn't catch everything, and grammar nerds can write entire books on the nuances of what their AI may or may not have right. Still, it is an incredibly useful tool to double-check your writing. For example, Grammarly caught a "your vs. you're" error as I was writing this blog.
A few other tips if you're going to design a brochure or flyer.
The tri-fold 8-1/2" X 11" brochure died in the 1990s - please leave it there where it belongs.
Less is more, and the object is not fill up the page with words. White space (empty space) is a good thing.
Think of the one person you wouldn't want to ask to review your draft version. That person that you know will rip it apart, find all the mistakes, and give you painful advice that you need to hear. As long as that person isn't toxic, that is who you want reviewing your brochure. You don't want to print 1,000 copies of a big mistake!
Wait, did you write a blog on how not to use your company? Yes. Yes, I did.
Badon Hill Group believes that big business marketing should be available to everyone. We can help you create a great UX plan from awareness to after the sale, but you need to climb that hill when you're ready. If you can self-service these things, that is great! If you need professional help, we're here for you too.