Stop Loss: The Power of Attention Messaging – Part 5
Written by
Rajesh Jain
Rajesh Jain
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Stop Loss: The Power of Attention Messaging – Part 5

Published : March 1, 2024

This is the concluding part of Stop Loss: The Power of Attention Messaging, first mentioned in ProfitXL to Profipoly: Solving the Four Funnel Frictions. In the fourth part, I talked about why email is the best push channel to implement Attention Messaging despite there being other push messaging channels. In this part, I will discuss how marketers can get started with Attention Messaging.

Love for life

The Tata Sky set-top box was a part of our lives for many years, delighting us with news, movies, cricket matches, live events, and more. We paid Tata Sky about Rs. 10,000 a year. Then, one fine day, Tata Sky was gone, just like that. I thought Tata Sky would notice, but they didn’t.

In all the years I was their customer, all I got from them was the monthly statement mail. Towards the end of the subscription period, I began getting a warning on the TV. However, I don’t recall getting an email requesting me to continue. After I didn’t renew, communication ceased entirely. It was like I didn’t exist, and it made no difference to Tata Sky whether I was a customer or not. Of course, Tata Sky has millions of subscribers, so my presence or absence made no difference to them.

But what could Tata Sky have done to retain me? It’s not that the Rs. 10,000 would have made much difference, and not everything on Tata Sky is available on OTT. What if Tata Sky had become a habit in my life? They could have sent me recommendations about movies and shows, weekend schedules with the best offerings, and suggested content on NatGeo and Discovery.

Rs. 15 per year was all it would have cost Tata Sky to keep my relationship with them alive. Maybe the ‘friendship’ would have at least made me think about my decision to walk away. Perhaps I would have continued.

This situation is not unique to Tata Sky. As I have discussed earlier, most brands are not thinking creatively about Attention Messaging and are not using the information they have to build relationships. Top leadership and brands’ marketing departments need a mindset shift. Discussing churn numbers and increasing acquisition budgets is not the solution; stopping churn (Stop Loss) by leveraging Attention Messaging is.

It’s time Attention Messaging gets a seat at the table like Adtech and Martech. Attention Messaging can power tomorrow’s brands. It is just sending push messages to inboxes, thinking about attention and habits, and fostering deeper relationships and friendships. Financial rewards and gamification introduce excitement, like sending a surprise gift to family and friends.

Attention Messaging must become the next C-suite agenda. If done right, it could create a lifetime of love between brands and customers – but only if it works both ways.

Action agenda

Here is a roadmap of how marketers can get started with Attention Messaging.

Lists

Start by figuring out the percentage of customers whose digital identities are known. Do you know the mobile number or email ID of the customer? Are you collecting both identities for new customers? If not, this is the first initiative to start.

Budget

Create an Attention Messaging Budget. What is the current split between acquisition and retention growth? If it is like a typical company, it would be close to 90:10. Start by taking 10% of the acquisition budget and allocate it to Attention Messaging. This will be money well spent for existing customers.

Team

You need a team for Attention Messaging. This could be an extension of the growth team, but it would need new skills like data science and analytics, creative thinking, content creation, and aggregation, etc.

Conversations

Speak to existing customers and ask them what they like about the messages you send them. Ask them what type of messaging they want to receive and what will make them stop ignoring your communications. Also, ask what delights them. It’s incredible what insights one can get by talking instead of just looking at numbers.

Email

Email is the first channel to consider for Attention Messaging. It has been around for a long time but has been neglected in India. This is reason enough to break the mold and use it best. Microns must be well crafted and made part of a sequence rather than just one-off activities.

This is why it is crucial to think about a day in the life of your customers and what you can do to get a 15-30-second window and break through the Attention Recession.

Expand

You can extend the program to other channels integral to your communications. You can also expand the coverage of the actions, like rewarding customers for sharing personal preferences and incentivizing them for referrals.

Analyze

The best metric for customer success is customer retention and growth. Figure out how these numbers can be tracked. Once you see progress, shift additional budgets from acquisition to Attention Messaging.

First-party data

Make sure every opportunity to strengthen direct access to customer data is utilized. First-party data is worth its weight in gold if you can retain the customer.

VRM

Once you get customers’ attention, create a Velvet Rope Marketing program focusing on the most valuable customers – the top 20% who can deliver 60% of revenues and 200% of profits. A combination of Attention Messaging and Velvet Rope Marketing can lay the foundations for a profits monopoly. Deep customer engagement and the continuous attention of the Best customers are the best moats you can create.

Attention Messaging is a new idea, yet an old and obvious idea. Think Attention and Retention, not Attrition and Reacquisition. What’s surprising is that only a few are doing it. Marketers can pioneer these ideas and build the best protection a growing business needs: happy customers who pay attention to you and stay for a lifetime.

Note: This is the concluding part in the series of 5 articles on ‘Stop Loss: The power of Attention Messaging.’ If you have not read the earlier ones, you can start from Part 1.

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