After the Purchase
In a previous post, we discussed how to align Sales and Marketing content to help you close deals. So then, what happens after the purchase? If you’re following our buyer journey, you know this is when the “Engagement” or “Loyalty” cycle stages come into play. At Marketing.AI, our Customer Success department takes care of this! We ensure our customers are engaging with the product, are getting the most use out of it and have answers to any questions with just a few clicks (and much more, of course :)). This is all fueled by content.
Delight > Disgruntlement
Since Customer Success takes over where sales left off, the messaging between these two groups needs to be tightly aligned to ensure customers are getting exactly what they expected. After all, you don’t want your customers to think a bait and switch took place. You want absolute delight!
How to Align Sales and Customer Success
Sales and Customer Success should work closely with Marketing when it comes to aligning messaging. This is because everything should tie together in the overarching content strategy created by your marketing department. A successful strategy requires everyone’s participation in both planning and execution. The following 5 steps can help create that alignment.
1. Document the customer journey / buyer cycle with a shared tool.
Using a shared tool to document the customer journey, the marketing department can get everyone involved. Customer Success can be assigned the “Engagement” phase of the customer journey and can fill in the different mindsets, touchpoints and content the customers experience after the sale. Sales can do the same with the Awareness, Interest and Consideration phases. Once the buyer cycle is complete, everyone has a complete picture of the customer journey which allows everyone to take a critical look at any inconsistencies or gaps. This is where Marketing can step in to help smooth out the journey and make sure it aligns with the overall content strategy.
2. Share asset libraries between marketing and customer success.
The buyer cycle documented the customer experience and the touchpoints encountered along the way. These touchpoints are pieces of content. Since we’re aiming to align your brand and messaging, we need to make sure everyone has access to the content that’s being used to educate the customer. You can do this with an asset library.
The asset library is a virtual library that holds all your existing content and usable content assets. Marketing.AI not only indexes the content you drafted within our framework but also any content that you upload. These assets can be shared between Marketing, Sales, and Customer Success, allowing each department to keep messaging consistent and even re-purpose each other’s content to help accomplish new goals.
3. Create a shared roll-up editorial calendar.
A shared editorial calendar gives the team from all departments a place to generate ideas, assign tasks, and visualize the content strategy. With a calendar view, it’s very apparent when there’s a gap between posts or even when you need to focus on another buyer cycle stage or theme.
The editorial calendar can even pull-through to a production calendar that visually displays the workload, and due dates for content creation. With this visibility everyone understands how their piece fits in to the overall plan.
4. Include each other in the workflow.
Collaborate! Take advantage of everyone’s great ideas, subject matter expertise, editing skills, design skills and more. Make sure your content is available to those in charge of your distribution channels, like social media, so they can spread the word.
Marketing.AI allows for each member to be included in the workflow, from creating ideas, to drafting, to design, and right up to review and approval. Marketing.AI also has a content request feature which gives anyone in the organization a platform to voice their content proposals.
5. Combine metrics to measure the effects of coordinated strategy.
When you look at the analytics behind your content you’ll notice what sticks out–in both good ways and bad. Usually you’ll find some pieces are highly effective–you’ll want to promote these further and make sure they’re getting used. Some pieces simply may not be that relevant to what your customers are looking for, or maybe only matters to a select few. This is also important information for planning and promoting content in the future.
An analytics system is integrated into the Maketing.AI solution, allowing all members to view how the content has been performing and key in on how that effects future planning. Shared strategic context leads to accurate measurement of how the combined efforts accredit value across the entire journey.
Looking to combine efforts across teams but not sure where to start? Sign-up for a free trial to learn more about key integrations such as Marketing.AI’s publishing integration with Marketo for aligning marketing automation and content marketing, or to learn more about how an asset library aligns marketing and sales efforts.