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Empathy Marketing: How to Maximize Your Customer Lifecycle

Oct 07, 2023

Empathy Marketing: How to Maximize Your Customer Lifecycle

In leiu of a Brand Breakdown this week, we wanted to share a few thoughts straight from the heart on the topic of “empathy marketing.” It’s our company name, but more importantly, it’s the kind of marketing we believe in… let’s get into it:

When we started the Empathy Marketing Company, we were intentional with choosing that name. To us, that name represents an approach to marketing that puts the customer first. The kind that makes people feel seen, known, and understood — throughout their entire lifecycle. This is what “empathy marketing” is all about.

It’s an entirely different approach than the “heartless” marketing that’s so common today — the kind that only cares about the short term conversion at the expense of the longterm customer relationship.

Because this is such a wide-spread problem, we thought we’d break it down for our subscribers. The good news is that while empathy marketing might require more intentionality and time, the ROI of a healthy customer lifecycle is unparalleled.

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So What is Empathy Marketing?

Empathy marketing is a strategy that puts your audience’s needs, feelings, and experiences at the center of your marketing. It requires understanding your audience’s emotions and perspectives to create content that resonates with them.

Empathy marketing is not just about selling a product or service but creating an emotional connection. Drip by drip. Marketing message after marketing message. Trust is built. And the brand with the most trust is the brand that wins in the end.

Your customers are on a journey to improve their life in some way. Your job as a marketer is to help nurture those customers along their journey each step of the way.

From prospect to lead to customer and hopefully all the way to a repeat customer. Empathy marketing ensures that the journey with your company is one in which they feel celebrated, not tolerated.

Why is Empathy Marketing Important?

Empathy marketing is a critical tool for marketers and business owners, because it builds trust and loyalty. When a brand takes the time to understand their audience and creates content that speaks to them, consumers feel valued and understood. This results in a stronger emotional connection between the brand and the consumer at every stage of their lifecycle.

There are two sides to this coin:

  • The brand side
  • The audience side

Understanding the brand side means investigating the thoughts and feelings that your brand and what you offer naturally elicits.

For example, Red Bull sells energy drinks. So it makes sense that they’ve spent billions of dollars over the years on marketing that elicits energetic emotions.

How did they do it?

They’ve sponsored sky divers, extreme athletes, and Formula 1 racers. 

Why? Because the audience side of the coin desires to feel more energetic. And what’s more energizing and exhilarating than extreme sports and death defying stunts?

Empathy Marketing Differentiates Your Brand

Empathy marketing is also an effective way to differentiate your brand from the competition. In today's market, consumers have endless choices, and they often choose brands that align with their values and beliefs. If your brand can show empathy and connect with your audience on a deeper level, it can set you apart from the competition and make you the preferred choice.

That’s why a brand like Liquid Death has been able to build a $200M brand… selling water. They’ve targeted a younger demographic with their edgy branding and they’ve earned loyalty by being socially and environmentally conscious.

How to Apply Empathy Marketing for Your Brand, Product, or Service

To apply empathy marketing to your business, you need to understand your audience. This involves researching their demographics, psychographics, and behaviors to get a clear picture of who they are and what they need.

Once you have a clear understanding of your audience and where that intersects with what you offer, you can create a clear marketing message that speaks to them. This could be in the form of blog posts, videos, and social media. The key is to create content that is relatable, emotional, and resonates with your audience. The content should not be focused on the product or service but the consumer's needs and feelings.

This isn’t easy. Being a small business and agency means you’re busy — and this makes creating a clear marketing message even harder than it already is.

You’re forced to constantly come up with new marketing materials, while still being true to the heart of your brand and how you want your brand positioned.

You want to get the right message to the right person and at the right time.

But there’s so many variables: the voice/tone, the visuals, the stage in their customer lifecycle, the empathy that’s required to understand your persona, the problem you solve for them, and how that intersects with the personality of your brand.

Managing these variables strategically is they key to effective marketing for any brand, product, or service. If you’re developing or reworking the marketing message of your own brand — it’s extremely difficult and easy to get off track because of the curse of knowledge.

If you’re doing this for your own or someone else’s brand — it’s time consuming to do all the research that’s required to fully understand a brand and how it needs to be positioned.

That’s why we’ve developed our unique Heart, Head, and Hands framework. This 3-step approach brings clarity as you align your purpose (Heart), strategy (Head), and tactics (Hands).

Once you have a full understanding of where your business stands and how to nurture someone on their journey with your brand, magic takes place.

Here’s just a few of the ways we’ve used empathy marketing to create connection:

  • Grew an email list to over 300k subscribers for one non-profit organization
  • Got a startup featured in the Morning Brew newsletter and seen by over 1M people
  • Achieved a +50% conversion rate on our lead magnet landing pages

If you’d like to see what empathy marketing can do to improve your customer lifecycle and grow your business, we have a few coaching spots opening up this quarter. Just reply to this email and we’ll connect from there to see if it’s a good fit.

Here’s to marketing with more heart 💛

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