As they progress on a journey with your brand, customers reach various milestones that make them more likely to share your product on social media. These milestones are commonly known as customer success milestones, because they reflect a stage of the buying process that increases customer satisfaction.
Customer milestones provide an opportunity for you to show customers that you listen and care about their interactions with your brand. These milestones also have the potential to boost social media engagement – especially when a customer has a pleasant brand experience that they are eager to share with others online.
1. Product Unboxing
There’s hardly a more exciting moment for your customers than when they open their newly received package or digital product. 40% of consumers say that they would share an image of a delivery via social media if it arrived in unique or attractive packaging.
For ecommerce retailers in particular, this calls for a greater focus on product packaging and presentation. The box you send to your customers is one of their earliest touch points with your brand, and can influence their desire to promote your product online.
While consumers commonly share their new purchases on platforms like Instagram and Facebook, YouTube is the platform that has most rapidly facilitated the trend.The volume of unboxing videos on YouTube has boomed in recent years, with over 90,000 searches for the term each month. The huge engagement and subscriber rates from unboxing videos often leads to subsequent purchases and increased brand awareness.
2. Customer Anniversaries
When we talk about customer milestones, anniversaries are usually one of the first to come to mind. Anniversaries celebrate an additional year of a customer’s patronage with a brand and are an excellent opportunity for relationship-building.
Brands that send personalized email messages to celebrate customer anniversaries tend to be more successful at engaging their target audiences than brands that only focus on mass-produced mailings. Such personalized messages show your customers that you appreciate their loyalty and that you value them as an individual member of the larger community.
One way that brands can celebrate milestones is by compiling a customer’s activity over the course of a year. Take for example, music streaming app Spotify, which reminds users of the songs they streamed the most at the end of the year.
Spotify Wrapped enables listeners to get a deep dive into their most memorable listening moments of the year.
Many retailers also use customer anniversaries as an opportunity to launch a sale or offer a special discount code. Providing a clear call-to-action and social sharing buttons can encourage customers both to take advantage of the reward, and to spread the word about it, too.
3. Course Completion
When it comes to informational products, course completion is another key customer success milestone. It often takes users a lot of time and effort to complete a task like an online course, sometimes weeks or months.
Online courses that offer shareable certificates provide a satisfying opportunity for users to be recognized for their efforts. Such certificates also enable learners to celebrate their achievements with friends, family, and prospective employers on social media.
Digital certificates aren’t just for massive open online courses (MOOCs); they’re applicable to companies of all sizes that provide training programs or courses. Companies that offer short, non-technical courses can still issue certificates as proof of participation.
For its digital commencement ceremony, Boise State University collected over 1,200 photos and videos from graduating students reflecting on their accomplishment. The university featured the voices of its diverse student body by celebrating these pieces of user-generated content on its website.
A strategy like this is a win-win; while students proudly shared their Bronco diplomas on social media, the university gained the opportunity to increase its visibility and value to its community. The potential for recognition on a public platform can be highly motivating, encouraging consumers in any brand’s online community to share their experiences and engage with the brand more on social media.
4. Breakthrough Results
It’s important to take time to reflect on your brand’s role in the overall customer journey. Your customer came into contact with your brand through their efforts to solve a particular problem or fulfill a desire. Therefore, when your customer first observes positive results from using your product, this becomes a major milestone for them.
The type of user-generated content and testimonials you receive will vary depending on the industry. For example, an ad management service could encourage users to document and share their first major income milestone on the platform, such as making their first $100 or $1000.
A Hylete customer shares her fitness journey on Instagram, and the brand showcases her post on-site along with other community members sharing how they reach their training goals with Hylete.
This strategy also works well with aesthetic-focused brands, such as those in personal care, cosmetics, apparel, or weight loss. For example, a skincare brand could generate viral social shares from customers who have been able to clear their acne after using the company’s products for a period of time.
Invite your customers to keep a log, or to take photos before and after using your product. It’s also important to leverage the power of community participation. As you share user photos and testimonials on your social media channels, encourage other customers who have experienced similar results to share their journey too, using your branded hashtag.
Banish skincare builds a collection of customer transformation milestones via Instagram.
5. Customer Service Wins
Many customers use social media networks like Twitter and Facebook to seek resolutions for issues. If handled correctly, even obstacles encountered during the buying process can generate favorable attention towards your brand.
To do this successfully, use social monitoring tools to receive alerts whenever customers mention your brand online. Respond quickly to queries and anticipate other suggestions that might help individuals. Actively listening to your customers and offering effective solutions to their problems will leave a positive impression in their minds.
Interestingly, 49% of consumers say that they would share a positive brand experience on social media, compared to just 30% of customers who say they would share a negative brand experience. The lesson? Customers are eager to recommend brands that make their buying journey easier, so give them a reason to rave about you.
Customer milestones provide an opportunity to provide business value and reap higher levels of social engagement. As you build a relationship with customers, be sure to collect insights that can help you celebrate the moments that stand out in their journey. When you use your social media channels to provide timely support and personalized recognition, you’ll win the loyalty of consumers who are thrilled to be associated with your brand.
Roli Edema is a personal development blogger and digital marketer with a penchant for meaningful quotes and stimulating conversations. On her blog, Roli shares useful tools to help individuals reach their personal, career, and business goals.