Attracting customers is surely not an easy task. From catching their attention, through maintaining it, all the way to making them interested in the product or service. All these things require good planning, a lot of effort, and most definitely — a good customer acquisition strategy.
But have you ever wondered how different companies managed to successfully use customer acquisition strategies in their projects? If your answer is yes, then let’s dive into various customer acquisition methods right now.
Customer Acquisition Examples
Different companies acquire new customers and maintain current ones on a daily basis. The question is — how to make it happen for us? Don’t be scared, though, as mistakes will definitely happen along the way. The fact that one marketing strategy may work for a certain business, does not mean that it will work for you as well.
If you don’t know what tactics to use, we’d recommend checking out the customer acquisition strategy article on our blog that gives you a closer look at the topic.
That being said, let’s dive into the examples!
The first entry on our list belongs to a company known all around the world — Amazon. This e-commerce giant placed its bet on marketing emails, and it was a rather wise choice.
Amazon’s strategy is both simple yet complex, as they use a wide range of different customer acquisition tactics. They offer a plethora of different products, low and competitive prices, and a thing of high importance to most customers – fast and efficient delivery service. What’s more, they support e-commerce by utilizing the FBA (fulfillment by Amazon), created Kindle, Amazon Prime (which originally was a free shipping service but in time evolved into what it is today, i.e. free shipping and a streaming service, similar to Netflix).
Today’s generation knows Amazon as the undisputed king of e-commerce, one of the big five, along with Microsoft, Meta (Facebook), Alphabet (Google), and Apple. But the company wasn’t a success right from the start. In fact, similar to other brands, Amazon started out in a garage with the CEO himself driving the packages to a post office. We know, it’s hard to believe right now, since Jeff Bezos became the richest man on earth. It was a struggle at first, employees were required to work 60 hours per week, and a line between personal life and work quickly faded.
It may surprise some of you, but Amazon actually didn’t make any profit until the 2000s. 2001 was the year of the first recorded quarterly profit by the company, which means it took six years of hard work to finally start making money. The company had to wait two more years before having its first annual profit, which happened in 2003. Judging by the state of Amazon today, all the blood, sweat, and tears paid off.
But how does Amazon acquire and keep clients?
Most of us prefer personalized emails that address our interests to generic ones sent to every possible person. How did Amazon take advantage of this strategy? Sending emails that inform the customer about products being left out in their shopping cart is just one example. The other would be a follow-up email after making a purchase asking the customer to review the item.
How does this help Amazon maintain and acquire new clients? If current customers are satisfied with the service, the personalized emails, and the company overall, they might refer it to their friends or colleagues. In fact, Amazon Prime’s customer retention rate in 2020 in the United States alone was 93% and 98%, after the first year and two years, respectively. A referral system, whether it’s Amazon Prime, Amazon Shopping App, or Amazon Prime Student, can get you and your friends quite nice benefits in the form of virtual dollars to spend on your next purchases! Moreover, while reviewing the product, users may feel the urge to browse the website in search of yet another item.
That’s not the end, though. Amazon doesn’t stop with personalized emails or shopping cart reminders, as they have much more to offer. Let’s start with Kindle, the most popular ebook reader of 2021. The company went far and beyond to make their product meet customer needs, while at the same time, they took care of the company’s interests by making sure that buying ebooks on the platform would be the most convenient way to do so. Why? Because when you buy an ebook from Amazon, you can get it instantly sent to your device in the supported format.
What’s more, the platform includes a feature called 1-Click Order, which allows you to buy the product on its page, without the necessity of adding it to the cart. You simply click on buy, head to the order summary, and voilà! Your book is waiting for you on your device! That surely is a convenience that other devices may be jealous of.
You thought that Amazon was done? Not a chance! In addition to all the things described above, the company also does quite a lot of commercials and produces YouTube videos. The company is even close to reaching a 500 thousand subscribers milestone.
Additionally, the company even opened up a range of stationery stores called Amazon Go. The whole idea behind them was to get rid of long lines and wasted time. There’s no checkout, you simply select the products you need, the rest is done by the Just Walk Out Technology — as Amazon called it. To enter the store you need to scan the in-store code that you can find in your Amazon mobile app. When products are taken from shelves, the technology automatically analyzes what has been taken. Once you leave the store, Amazon will analyze your shopping cart, send you a receipt, and charge your Amazon account.
Well, I’m sorry, but we’re not done yet! Amazon Web Services is one thing, but the other is Amazon Game Studios, which is responsible for a recent MMORPG hit – New World. There’s also FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) which essentially is an e-commerce fulfillment for merchants who sell on the platform. There’s really so much to Amazon that in order to cover every single thing, we’d have to dedicate a separate article just for that.
Customer acquisition at its best!
Dropbox is using yet another popular and efficient customer acquisition strategy, i.e., the referral program (in more professional terms referred to as the product-led growth). Offering a customer a benefit in exchange for a referral is a common way of acquiring new customers, while at the same time maintaining current ones. How did Dropbox come up with such an idea and how did it influence the platform’s traffic? To answer the former – Dropbox allegedly took inspiration from none other than PayPal. And as you’ll see in a second, it worked! In the period of 2008-2009, after launching its own referral program, Dropbox gained 3.9 million new registered users! To top that, I’m just gonna leave you with the number of registered users in 2017 – 33.9 million.
When it comes to the more practical knowledge, users can earn 500 MB of storage per one referral. The limit goes up to 16 GB on Dropbox Basic account, which makes it quite a valuable offer. The situation presents itself even better on Dropbox Plus and Professional accounts, where you get 1 GB of storage per one referral with a 32 GB limit.
When it comes to HubSpot, the company uses various customer acquisition strategies. We all heard of Twitter and let’s face it, probably most of us use it. HubSpot took advantage of their Twitter account by posting tweets about their Academy. What engages the user is the usage of vocabulary like “get” or “free”. After all, most likely we would all fall for it. By doing so, HubSpot makes sure new clients are likely to appear and the number of website visitors will increase.
Another interesting approach is HubSpot’s blog ideas generator. There, a user has to fill out the space with at least one word to receive adequate blog titles. A genius idea in itself. You may wonder, how can it bring in more customers? Well, there’s a catch. In order to see the full list of different blog post titles, you have to register on the website, so there’s that.
On the other hand, Shopify features a similar functionality — a business name generator, where users can generate a name for the business based on the category of their choosing.
Let’s come back to HubSpot for a bit. The company offers a free program with basic functionalities that newly started companies or those in need of a CRM may find appropriate.
The company itself also produces quite a lot of useful articles and definitive guides to position itself high in the SERP (Search Engine Results Page) by using appropriate keywords (for example, Instagram marketing, value-based selling, Facebook ads, essentially covering almost all topics related to marketing, sales, and customer service). They spend a lot of resources investing in SEO itself and in the platform’s content. By creating both free and premium content, they promote the platform as the articles they release, rank high in the SERP. The company’s free content aims to generate traffic on the website. Once it is achieved, users have to register on it in order to gain access to premium content. By doing so, HubSpot ensures that a customer stays informed and updated about the website’s content. They do it in order to nurture part of the traffic so that later in the future customers who are looking for CRM, marketing, or sales tools would instantly think of HubSpot.
HubSpot also creates a wide variety of tools that make marketers’ lives easier (i.e., ready-made themes for presentations, Excel files for calculating various things, etc.).
Microsoft — a company without which the world as we know it probably would not exist. Let’s face it, everyone knows who Bill Gates is and what things Microsoft offers. Speaking of their products, they are present in almost every household. Additionally, the company also supports universities all around the world with free software licenses (formerly known as Microsoft Dreamspark and Microsoft Imagine, nowadays simply as – Azure Dev Tools for Teaching). However, it’s not coming from the goodness of their hearts, but rather from practicality and pragmatism. People who grew up using Microsoft products will most likely be unwilling to commit to any change when it comes to software. The same goes for companies who choose Microsoft software because people simply know how to handle them. By doing everything mentioned above, Microsoft provides itself with a steady flow of customers. What an amazing customer acquisition strategy!
These days, Microsoft is not only about software but also about devices. We’ve all heard of Xbox — of that we’re sure. What if we told you that Microsoft produces the consoles knowing that it’ll generate a loss in the beginning, but in time will bring the company quite a lot of profit? Unbelievable, isn’t it? That can be attributed to the low prices of Microsoft’s console compared to a price of an average-end PC (especially nowadays when there’s a shortage of components), as Xbox Series S can be bought just for $299, while Xbox Live Gold and GamePass can provide you with hours of virtual entertainment for a really small price. And they know what they’re doing. Those customers who bought Xbox Series S consoles have no other choice but to buy digital versions of their favorite games, as the model doesn’t feature a disk compartment. By doing so, the company earns more money as the prices of digital copies are usually much higher than physical ones.
Interestingly, Microsoft also invests money in cloud gaming. That results in quite a shift in the company’s approach to the competition, as Sony is not seen as one anymore. Amazon and Google, on the other hand, are seen as competitors because they offer cloud services as well.
The company knows what it’s doing and they know they are the best at what they do.
Asana is yet another product that attracts potential customers. It’s a platform that lets users handle and organize tasks, objectives, etc. The company mainly focuses on the free model of their product, also known as the freemium business model. What is it, though? It’s a model where you get basic functionalities with limited access for free. If you wish to upgrade, you can do so by choosing an appropriate program that suits your needs and committing to paying for it monthly.
Asana is based on the freemium model and that means that it uses various techniques to stay on top of the game. Advertisements, presence, and promotion on various social media platforms, SEM, and more are Asana’s daily bread, while at the same time using content marketing.
Vidyard is a platform used for hosting and analyzing video performance. The platform’s premise is to help people reach clients easier. But how does Vidyard itself manage to reach its potential clients? Let’s find out.
Vidyard mostly acquires its clients through collaboration with large companies, as well as constant development in the field of integration. Just recently, Vidyard launched its integration with Slack, resulting in the ability to record videos and distribute them directly to people on the platform. The omnipresence of Vidyard makes it a really desired tool across many business fields. Vidyard’s integrations don’t end on Slack, though. You can also use the Vidyard Google Chrome extension, as well as integration with LinkedIn.
What’s more, Vidyard even has a desktop app available for both Windows and Mac operating systems. These days, the company focuses on remote sales that they refer to as “virtual selling”. Not only that, but the company also offers free tools, like Cam Test or Mic Test.
Jarvis.ai, previously also known as Conversion.ai, is a copywriting tool operated by artificial intelligence. It really is an impressive tool as it requires only sparse information about the content. After filling out the necessary information, Jarvis takes care of the rest. As a result, it provides 99.99% of original content that is plagiarism-free. Wow! It even integrates and cooperates with SurferSEO.
The question is — how does Jarvis.ai reach its target audience? Well, the answer is affiliate marketing. For each person you refer, you can get 30% of your recurring commissions. The more people you refer to, the higher recurring income you get! Simple as that.
But Jarvis’ interaction with customers is much more than that. The Jarvis official Facebook group attracts thousands of the little robot’s supporters that share fan pages, projects, blogs, or even an attempt to write an entire book with the help of Jarvis! Incredible! Even the CEO of Jarvis can often be seen in the group, chatting, posting, and replying to questions.
A Few Tips
- Think about what kind of people you would like to reach;
- Calculate the customer acquisition cost to see if the budget allows for selecting a proper method;
- Select the method of your choice and proceed;
- Wait for results!
Alright! We’re nearing the end so let’s sum up everything up and solidify what we’ve learned so far:
- Personalized emails or email marketing are a great way to acquire new clients or manage existing customers;
- The referral system turns out to be an amazing customer acquisition method as it’s simultaneously benefitting current and future clients;
- Usage of vocabulary that indicates action, i.e. “get”, “learn”, or ones like “free”, incites the reader to participate in what’s going on;
- Discounts and interesting deals make customers buy things more willingly;
- Collaboration and integration with companies influence popularity.
We’ve gone through seven examples of how you can encourage customers with the help of acquisition strategies. Obviously, there are plenty more customer acquisition methods out there, like user-generated content or digital marketing, but for now, these will do.
If you use one of the strategies mentioned in the article with all marketing efforts you can, we’re sure that building a customer base will be much easier.