On this episode of Straight Facqts, we’re talking to Robbie Fitzwater, founder of MKTG Rhythm, where we talk about customer retention, and how you can be able to grow the lifetime value of your client to better your marketing efforts. Let’s get into it.
Robbie, one of the great reasons why I am excited to chat with you is because you’re a practitioner of retention. So, you are able to increase how much a customer value is worth to you.
As an advertiser, a social media advertiser, you make my job a lot easier.
I can be a shitty advertiser if you actually get a better lifetime value out of the customer. It allows advertisers to be able to better breathe.
You basically allow people and advertisers to have more flexibility in their acquisition rates to find a more ideal customer as with email retention is able to grow with that lifetime value.
Robbie Fitzwater: “Advertising brings people into the top of the funnel, especially on the social side.”
Yeah. It’s always the different groups kind of handing off. Again, advertising brings people into the top of the funnel, especially on the social side.
Demand creation is an art form in its own. Basically getting the right message in front of the right person at the right time is going to allow them to take that first action.
And then, hopefully we’re the 100 meter relay in the Olympics like you’re handing off the baton. Hopefully at that point either paid search or email is going to be able to take that and run with it from there.
“As opposed to an agency that does everything, the specializations make it really narrow in the focus.”
But that’s where all these groups definitely play together well. With you focusing and specializing in paid social, it makes it kind of interesting because as opposed to an agency that does everything, the specializations make it really narrow in the focus.
It’s not like some agency relationships where it can be like the guy that works out of the gym. They have a really big upper body and little tiny chicken legs with some really strong pieces. But they’re not really holistically strong as a whole.
And there are some agencies out there that are conglomerates that can be able to do everything. But you’re going to be paying for that everything price too.
So it’s affordable. One part I like about it, I work with a lot of partners like that and everybody’s accountable and knows what good looks like. Everybody’s accountable to an outcome.
And that’s where I think that this model is becoming more and more common. I kind of like it because it makes it a little bit more tangible in value that everyone creates or understanding that everyone has around the table.
Not one can stand on its own. If you are just doing Facebook advertising, I guarantee you, you will fail.
Yeah. Again, I always think about what does your marketing tool look like?
And so many groups, if they’re just having a one-legged stool — one channel that’s driving so much value in their marketing. If that’s Facebook, Google organic search, paid search or email. If you’re only standing on one stool, when that stool changes or something adjusts, you’re not very stable. You’re really at the mercy of that platform.
“If you balance your risks across the different platforms, you really make yourselves a little bit more anti-fragile.”
But, if you balance your risks across the different platforms, you really make yourselves a little bit more anti-fragile in the way that, “Okay, hey, my paid search is dropping this month, or hey, Google made another algorithm update. I need to lean on my other channels more, how do I adjust to accommodate that and correct for that?
That’s one thing that, again, working with different groups that have different perspectives, it makes it a really good way to go through that thought process.
If we know that we’re going to possibly drop in one area of marketing, how do we adjust and tailor things accordingly?
“We knew when we were doing that, organic traffic is going to take a hit because we’ve got to prove to Google that we’re still the same organization.”
In a former life, I was a director of marketing for a large e-commerce business and we migrated an older kind of homegrown e-commerce system. Homegrown website from 1988 hadn’t been really changed or updated to Shopify.
We knew when we were doing that, organic traffic is going to take a hit because we’ve got to prove to Google that we’re still the same organization.
During that time, if we drop in organic, that’s $3 or we’re averaging like $3 a session for organic traffic. We’re going to take a hit there.
We know we’re going to have to be able to accommodate and correct for that. So, we need to have a larger paid budget in our war chest ready to go.
We know that we may need to get email up and running at a faster rate so we can cushion that blow a little bit and really even things out. So the wave or the dip isn’t as harsh or isn’t as drastic.
That’s a good point too with email marketing. Actually email helps you through those rough times, because it’s not just email, but retention helps you through those rough times.
Yes. I’m a big believer on the retention side of things just because I have seen this really work well.
And again, that story I was just telling you about, this is how I really discover the power of email and that retention side of the marketing.
“The retention side really gives you a lot more structure and a lot more foundation.”
I focused a lot, early in my career, on the acquisition side because it’s sexy and it’s exciting. It’s fun as a director of social in a former life.
But the retention side really gives you a lot more structure and a lot more foundation where, “Hey, we get somebody to purchase once.”
If we can really manage that customer life cycle, add value beyond the transaction, through content and engage that audience in a way that’s not just discounting, we can really hopefully create the customers we want to see at the end of the day.
“The retention side of marketing is kind of like the person your parents wanted you to date in high school.”
So, it may not get the same attention. I guess the analogy I always make for email or the retention side of marketing is, it’s kind of like the person your parents wanted you to date in high school. They’re very smart, stable and reliable. They’re going to grow up to be a doctor, a lawyer or an engineer, but they’re not sexy.
They don’t have a leather jacket. They don’t drive a motorcycle the same way a lot of other channels do and the same way that acquisition gets a lot of attention.
This is that other piece that is going to be the gift that keeps on giving for so many businesses that doesn’t always get the attention it deserves.
Would you say that when you start really getting into retention marketing, just like the example you gave of they’re not the most attractive in high school. But as they grow up it’s going to be something that you can be able to have confidence with and to be able to grow a nice family home with as well?
At first, you need to let your retention mature a little bit or how does that process really build out? Because I imagine that your lifetime value isn’t going to triple overnight.
Robbie Fitzwater: “You have to build a really strong retention engine if you haven’t had that well established of a business yet.”
Yeah. Depending on the size, scale and basically the level of maturity in the business. You have to build a really strong retention engine if you haven’t had that well established of a business yet.
So again, establishing a viable product market fit is going to be super important.
But then, basically understanding, “Hey, I’ve got to be able to turn my current customers into the customers I want to see at the end of the day.”
Some of that may be on the acquisition side like understanding, “Hey, what is the average lifetime value of the customers we’re bringing in the top of the funnel?”
Do we need to adjust and change that?
Who are our most valuable cohorts and how do we bring more of them in?
“Once you can have a certain level of maturity, businesses need to start investing early in the paid side and the growth side to prove that product market fit.”
So, even informing some of those upstream decisions. And then, once you can have a certain level of maturity, businesses need to start investing early in the paid side and the growth side to prove that product market fit.
But after a while, you can transition some of your marketing budget to focusing on the email side, retention side, probably start to invest in organic SEO.
You’re not always focusing all your attention on the performance marketing side where you’re playing some in the brand marketing space. Where early on, you don’t really have that luxury because you’ve got to really move the needle.
But then, you can transition into focusing a little bit more evenly in those investments.
And for businesses starting out with this, there are some low hanging fruits and easy wins, but understand it’s not going to happen overnight.
“If you have one item that’s going to sell, you don’t necessarily have a solid business model to create a real retention engine.”
If you haven’t touched the list that is pretty large, there’s probably lots of easy opportunities there.
But getting to know them, getting to understand who they are, what drives them, and understand how you can help them solve the problems they’re facing. And then also understanding what your business needs to have.
If you have one product, you’re a product. You’re not necessarily a business. If you have one item that’s going to sell, you don’t necessarily have a solid business model to create a real retention engine.
Because you’re going to need to give somebody a reason to come back.
Understanding what other items could I introduce? How could I expand that product offering? It gets into a little bit of the business strategy side of things, which I really enjoy. And needing to go upstream a little bit from just that retention side.
If somebody is looking to invest in retention, obviously, it’s great to give a blank check and throw a party. But where would that blank check go towards or what infrastructure should you be building out in retention?
We like to think about it in terms of like, focusing on email because that’s just a channel that is going to be one of the strongest levers for driving that retention.
And build out three different pillars where we have an acquisition, list building. Basically, enhancing data, building our list and making sure that list is clean.
We have an area where we’re focusing on email automations and driving customer behavior based on triggers in what they do.
And then we also have campaigns where it’s just maintaining the attention and maintaining relevance over time. We really think that one of the more under misunderstood areas of email marketing and under invested spaces is the automation side because it seems a lot more intimidating than it really is.
“Creating a really strong infrastructure of automations gives you a nice foundation that you can continually build on.”
Creating a really strong infrastructure of automations gives you a nice foundation that you can continually build on. And it’s also predictable reoccurring revenue month over month.
If we introduce an automation, it drives an extra maybe $5,000 a month every month during the course of the year. That’s an extra $60K a year.
If we’re introducing one of those every single month, that snowball builds up really fast and it starts to roll down the hill. And that’s predictable and consistent. Basically as long as the business environment stays relatively similar, those are going to continue to improve.
That’s where we like to start in where we’re planning for things. And then also the campaign side, how do we add value through consistent content where we’re reaching out to our audience? Adding value through content positioning as thought leaders and really building the authority and trust over time.
We always joke like, “Hey, we’re never going to out scale Amazon with our eCommerce clients, but we can out human them and that’s a real differentiator.”
I think that really is the only differentiator if you’re competing against Amazon.
Robbie Fitzwater: “Even the smaller players can be real rock stars based on how well they can bring the insights they have in a digital space to the world in a more consistent way.
Yeah. I mean, the elephant in the room, it’s a challenge. But again, we’re in a space where there’s so many ways that we can do so much great work through content and through the marketing we’re doing.
We’ve never been in a more fun time to be a marketer because even the smaller players can be real rock stars based on how well they can bring the insights they have in a digital space to the world in a more consistent way.
Yeah. You mentioned content calendar. Do you have any insights in how a content calendar on email may differentiate from social? Or is there a blending in both that you should build out in a content calendar?
Robbie Fitzwater: “Those omnichannel engaged audience is going to be some of your most valuable audience as a whole.”
So depending on your audience and this is like catnip. I love these things. After working for years as a social marketer, I like to think of it as a blending.
I really do think there’s a blend that needs to happen because your super fans and basically the most passionate advocacy of your brand are going to be engaging with you hopefully, and across those different channels. Those omnichannel engaged audience is going to be some of your most valuable audience as a whole.
But how do you create consistency through email and get into a rhythm of sending a consistent stream of content across your channels to the right audiences, and then using your social content to supplement that?
“That’s where that hero content really comes in, where they want to make a big splash and leave with a cliffhanger.”
I always think of this as that hygiene hub and hero model strategy where if you’re a show on HBO, if I’m Game of Thrones, I publish an episode every Sunday.
The equivalent is like my email, but during the course of the week, Game of Thrones is also sharing content on their own social channels. They’re teasing what’s coming up. They’re teasing what happened last week and giving recaps and giving insider information.
And then leading into the finale of the season, that’s where that hero content really comes in, where they want to make a big splash and leave with a cliffhanger.
But if we kind of follow that same structure, if we can build our email cadence around that. The email cadence is going to really be the skeleton of our structure and we’re going to supplement that with our social calendar too where both are helping each other out.
“When somebody starts to dive into your email, that’s just basically an indicator that they want to know more and you’re not going to be suddenly battling Instagram or Facebook for that audience anymore.”
But if we can really use those and leverage those channels in conjunction, we’re going to be doing our best job across the board. And also understanding what your goals for each of those channels are.
If I can get somebody from social over to email, that’s a win because I have more control over that audience suddenly. When somebody starts to dive into your email, that’s just basically an indicator that they want to know more and you’re not going to be suddenly battling Instagram or Facebook for that audience anymore.
The gloves come off a little bit more and you get to open up a little bit where it’s not always as much of a battle to maintain eyeballs and attention.
Yeah. I love that, what you’re talking about with email marketing, because I see a lot of times where it is just blast, blast, blast and a percentage of people actually interact with the blast, but there’s no storytelling at all.
It’s just basically them talking about a product and having no awareness in where that person is in their flow in engaging with that product or service.
Robbie Fitzwater: “The content should match the context of their life.”
Or even the context of what’s going on for the person either. I’m always amazed to see, “Okay. Let’s talk about our swim shorts in November.” No, even the context is completely different for this audience.
Understand what they’re going through at that time and hopefully the content should match the context of their life.
And this is where you can really see bad email strategy or just bad marketing strategy like, “Hey, week one is 10% off. Week two is 15% off. Week three is 20% off.”
This is a race at the bottom where nobody wins. And basically it’s just a lack of creativity or insights or a lack of strategy where again, let’s just throw it at the wall, see what sticks.
“Your price is your brand more than anything.”
You really degrade your brand really fast. We talk about, pricing. Your price is your brand more than anything.
And if you’re degrading your brand in that category, you really just hurt yourself. You’re shooting yourself in the foot because you have no pricing power at that point. And when everything is on sale always, nothing is ever on sale because your audience is trained to only purchase when things are on sale.
You’re killing your margins and you’re degrading your brand. So the loyalty and value really go down the tubes really quickly.
And the only time that they’re going to purchase from you in the future is when they get a discount.
Robbie Fitzwater: “Social is kind of an easy training ground for email because you’re doing the same things except you’re closer to the cash register and you’re not battling an algorithm.”
Yeah. You’re training them. We work with some clients, it takes months or years to even get them out of that mindset like, “Hey, everything is always on sale.”
It takes time to really get them out of that mindset because you have to be giving them a reason to open. You have to be giving them a reason to engage.
But that’s where the good marketing strategy comes into play. How can we serve them? I always joke, social is kind of an easy training ground for email because you’re doing the same things except you’re closer to the cash register and you’re not battling an algorithm.
“In social, your goal is to earn and maintain attention and you’re doing the exact same thing on email.”
In social, your goal is to earn and maintain attention and you’re doing the exact same thing on email. But when you’re doing that in a consistent cadence, it makes it predictable, it makes it consistent.
And then it really forces you to think like, “What is my audience going to need?
How can I add value?
How can I connect the dots for them in a way that’s going to make sense and be valuable as opposed to just promoting my product?”
“You should be cushioning that blow a little bit before you just start shamelessly promoting your brands.”
There’s definitely room for promoting your product. You’re going to be doing that. This is the beginning of like end of October. We’re going to the holiday season pretty soon.
Everybody’s going to get a lot of bad emails. Everybody is going to be doing lots of promotion, but you should be earning the respect and credibility before that.
You should be cushioning that blow a little bit before you just start shamelessly promoting your brands.
“Add value through content, get them engaged and involved.”
Add value through content, get them engaged and involved. Don’t just reach out to your audience for the first time in a year this November 25th and say, “Hey, I haven’t seen you since last year, but this is my product. You should get it again and you purchased from us last year.”
That’s not a great way to maintain retention or really serve your audience either.
Yeah. Always maintain that relationship cause the audience is going to know when it’s fake. If you talk to them once every year, it’s kind of like me calling up a friend who I haven’t talked to in a year or two. And they’re immediately going to be thinking either something really bad has happened or I need something from them.
Robbie Fitzwater: “As marketers, we have to be a little bit more creative in those times.”
“Hey, man, I haven’t seen you since last year, but can I borrow some cash?” Or like, “Hey, can I sell you something?”
Like no, just be there in between.
Again, as marketers, we have to be a little bit more creative in those times. Starting early in my career in higher education, marketing for higher Ed, the summer at a university, it is crickets. It is so hard to keep people excited about a university in the summer because nobody is really thinking about school.
“Understand what’s going to connect with your audience, what’s going to help you grow.”
But those are the times where you should be experimenting and growing. Understand what’s going to connect with your audience, what’s going to help you grow.
So, when you do have a busy time when your calendar is really tight, that’s when you can start to really flex those muscles and flex that creativity where you’re experimenting, you’re growing, moving and evolving forward.
But again, everybody’s got that seasonality and cyclical nature of their marketing calendar.
Which there is obviously a reason for it, but I do think that you should be constantly having that communication.
One of things that you kind of opened my eyes to is with social, you have a wide variety of people. There’s top of funnel, middle funnel, bottom funnel messaging where you just try to get your name out there and you try to get a little bit more of a deeper funnel, a different kind of communication.
That’s the same thing I imagine on email as well where you have somebody. You’re just trying to get them excited, more brand awareness stuff and more middle and bottom of funnel where you’re ready for them to purchase. But if it’s all bottom of funnel, you’re not speaking to a lot of your audience.
No. And you’re a middle school boy just trying to close way too soon. It’s heavy handed. It’s tough. But again, you want to be able to understand how am I going to reach this audience?
Right out of the gate, do I want to offer a discount?
How do I understand what they need and what differentiates them?
We always want to work with clients to make sure. . . even the context to why they’re buying. “Are you purchasing for yourself? Are you purchasing for a friend?”
We have a children’s clothing client that’s like, “Hey, are you purchasing for your child? Are you a grandparent or are you a gift giver?”
Those are the three main categories. And all of those are going to need to be treated completely differently because the use cases and reasoning for them are all going to be different.
“When we can earn the right to ask for more data, that gives us a really unique position in terms of how we’re going to be connecting with them in a longer term format.”
If you’re a grandparent or a gift giver, you want the baby to look cute. That baby looking cute, that’s a win for you.
If you’re a parent, you just want it to be the easiest use case ever. You want it to be soft. You want it to be easy to clean, not going to stain. Those are the things that are on your mind.
But understanding that use case really helps us to understand how do we frame our marketing? How do we serve that person uniquely?
And then how do we really build an experience that they’re going to really find valuable?
When we can earn the right to ask for more data, that gives us a really unique position in terms of how we’re going to be connecting with them in a longer term format.
And to go a little bit deeper into the content, and this may be a frustration. But how do you get clients to work with you on content? Is this something that you build out? How does that flow?
Because I can imagine a lot of people — I don’t want to do a selfie, I don’t want to make any content.
Is there a lot of communication that has to go there to let them know that they have to commit to it if they want a higher lifetime value or how does that flow work?
I know that’s probably a case by case with each client.
Some of it is going to be a case by case, but honestly we want to know where else are they investing in their marketing?
So, if somebody is investing in SEO, that’s an easier group to work with. If they don’t have a good or strong foundation, we need to understand, “Hey, who are your subject matter experts? How do we leverage them?”
How do we do that in an efficient way that’s not going to, again, pull them away from their core duties but also we want to know, “Hey, can we have an hour every two weeks of this person’s time?”
So some clients we do kind of hold their hand and work them into a content process, but we work to get the engine turning really fast and soon because we want them to be firing on all cylinders and understanding, “Hey, I’m going to publish every week. We have that content calendar built out. We want that content calendar to map to that customer journey and what’s going to be relevant to them at different times of the year.”
But we want those wheels turning early. So that is just getting them into the flow, getting them into a rhythm.
“You’ve got a consistent cadence and a consistent plan for publishing and distributing your content that’s going to be valuable and engaging.”
And that’s why we call my business MKTG Rhythm. How do we get your business into a rhythm where it’s not just something you do every once in a while?
You’ve got a plan. You’re no longer a cowboy shooting from the hip. You’ve got a consistent cadence and a consistent plan for publishing and distributing your content that’s going to be valuable and engaging.
“Add value beyond the transaction and that’s where the real differentiation happens.”
Again, you may not touch everyone of your audiences every week, but your super fans, you want to be building for it very consistently.
That’s one of the key pillars because if we’re consistently sending discounts, we can only promote our products so much. We want to be serving that customer beyond that. Add value beyond the transaction and that’s where the real differentiation happens.
“We celebrate the human expertise inside the business and then we also make that person’s life better.”
If we’re just promoting products, and some of that use case is great, but if we can really start to do that in a consistent way, it’s a real win for the business. Because we celebrate the human expertise inside the business and then we also make that person’s life better.
And when they’re coming up on another decision, we have top of mind preference there because we’ve been there with them in the trenches the entire time.
You mentioned super fan, which is very interesting. The dynamics of a super fan and how you can be able to grow super fans.
And this is a little bit out of left field, but to be able to possibly better grow that community, do you have any experience working within communities? So say like Facebook groups or any communities in general to have that communication with audiences.
Personally we haven’t started doing that for MKTG Rhythm. We work with clients, we recommend that. Some can scale that at a level that’s going to work. Those places are going to be a challenge.
They don’t see the ROI in the near term. I think there’s more and more attention being placed on this. There’s more and more of a need for this.
“I think we’re going to keep seeing more and more private Discord channels and Slack channels.”
I think we’re going to keep seeing more and more private Discord channels and Slack channels. Those are places where there’s a lot of real relevant value being added.
I’m part of a few Discord communities that I really love. I have a group of marketers in RISE community through Mark Schaefer.
And those are areas where I learn a lot about marketing and I’m really passionate about it. But we haven’t been able to get those things going.
“But for their super fans, we try to serve them in unique ways.”
We have clients who are active and engaged in a lot of existing communities, but haven’t taken the step of working. We’re going to help them organize and grow those on their own.
But for their super fans, we try to serve them in unique ways. I know we have an equestrian client who, once somebody purchases twice, we offer the opportunity to join our VIP list.
As part of joining their VIP list, we ask them their horse’s name and birthday. If anybody knows anybody that owns a horse, horse people are absolutely crazy.
They love their horses. They have separate bank accounts for their horse the same way they do their child. They’re saving money the same way in their horse bank account.
They have a 529 plan. So it’s really kind of crazy. But if we know their horse’s name and birthday, we can serve them, “Hey, looks like Skittles’ birthday is coming up. Our team got together and put together a list of things that we recommend for your horse for their birthday.”
“Just making them feel warm and fuzzy and adding value beyond the transaction.”
And then they may receive a message on their birthday. But again, just making them feel warm and fuzzy and adding value beyond the transaction. We can go so much deeper than we would be able to normally, but we’ve got to add value before we can ask for that.
And they’ve got to really prove that they’re going to be a candidate worthy of being in that inside group.
You know what would be a terrible test? If they have products that you can sell to a child as well, and you would see what the average person spends more money on, their horse or their kid for their birthday?
I think I’d say over under, 85% chance of horse. I’m not kidding, because horse stuff is not cheap.
It’s really equestrian. They call it the sport of kings for a reason. Unless they’re buying their kid a pony, in which case that could be the equalizer.
Yeah. So it’s a unique space, but understanding what’s relevant for that audience or that client is really fun.
“Once we’re working with a group, we can go really deep and understand what they need, what they want, and who are their most valuable audience.”
Once we’re working with a group, we can go really deep and understand what they need, what they want, and who are their most valuable audience. And how do we serve them in a deeper way?
And that group, their marketing makes them money because we have vendor partners that want to sponsor different pieces of content or work with them to enhance the SEO on their site.
So, there’s lots of value that they can add through that content. It’s really unique and different.
So is there any shiny tool that you’ve seen in retention over the past year that may have failed or may be great, but something that really sparks your interest? Like “Holy shit, that’s a really good idea, or that’s a really cool tool.”
Robbie Fitzwater: “Klaviyo has been really exciting.”
We use Klaviyo for a lot of our email clients. Klaviyo has been really exciting.
I think I’ve technically used it since 2018. It evolved a lot. But I’m always amazed at how easy they make things in terms of how do we actually bring these things to life and across different e-commerce clients?
“A lot of subscription engines like Smartrr or Skio are really impressive to build a subscriber base of people who will subscribe to your product.”
If you’re not using it, you really need to be. There’s a lot of these businesses. If your business actually accommodates for it, if you have a replenishable product, a lot of subscription engines like Smartrr or Skio are really impressive to build a subscriber base of people who will subscribe to your product.
And everybody knows that’s a gift that keeps on giving. So, you want to treat those audiences really well.
But those have been really powerful for us. And seeing how we can really just understand who our best clients are, what our best customers are, and how to really serve them once they’re in those communities.
“Once they’re subscribed, we change our business model.”
Once they’re subscribed, we change our business model. We change the way we communicate. We’re suddenly not working to try and get them to repurchase, we’re working to minimize churn in that audience.
And when we can minimize the churn of that audience, that gives us a way of not being so transactional. That gives us a way of making sure that we’re going to be serving them in unique ways. It also makes us a little bit better with our marketing.
I totally agree because our bullsh*t meters now are so high.
So, even though they purchase something, they’re like, “Well, they tricked me. They got me again and I got to purchase.”
There’s just awareness that you’re being sold to, but you’ll just try to avoid churn. It’s not clearly that you’re trying to sell them. That gives more meaning to just pure story, not trying to sell anything.
We always try and go through the exercise with clients, “What if you didn’t have to drive repurchase? What if you wanted to minimize that churn?”
It’s a really good thought experiment to go through in understanding, “Hey, what is going to be the most valuable thing we can do in our marketing? And where were we focusing our attention in marketing?”
“Marketing comes back to three ways to geometrically grow a business.”
Again, I talk about retention. I always think about how marketing comes back to three ways to geometrically grow a business.
You can increase your number of customers, average order value, or number of purchases. If you double any one of those three, you’re going to double the value of the business. And if we’re focusing time and attention on number three, that LTV or number of purchases, we’re probably going to be able to improve that average order value over time too.
“E-commerce businesses can be glorified vending machines because they are so focused on that first transaction.”
But we’re just taking a different approach to marketing that’s not as transactional. And that’s where we get a really good return for our investment in our marketing because we’re not just focused on that next transaction.
That’s where I joke like, “Yeah, e-commerce businesses can be glorified vending machines because they are so focused on that first transaction. They never even think about the other side of things where they’re bringing the customer back in for free without an acquisition cost.” It’s leaving money on the table.
I think marketing is a reflection of life. And in life when you play the short game, you’re bound to lose.
Robbie Fitzwater: “It takes you out of the space of that transactional brand to differentiate yourself.”
Yes. It’s always fun to see how those happen. But when you can really think about it strategically, it gives you a lot of power as a marketer. It takes you out of the space of that transactional brand to differentiate yourself.
And like we said, that’s what’s going to create the brands that will still be around in five to 10 years as opposed to being eaten by Amazon. Especially in the e-commerce space.
You see that people are less committed now to brands than say they were five, 10, 15, 20. I mean, however long that you want to be able to do that for.
But if brands today that are stealing that attention don’t work on their branding, they’re going to go by the wayside. And those companies who may have for 20 years, if they still have a strong brand, they’re going to continue. Obviously, if they’re running everything correctly on the back end as well.
Yeah. I think you originally reached out around the 4P’s of marketing. All of those things that have been consistent in marketing are still consistent.
They hold true the way they have like price, product, promotion, place. They’ve just evolved and changed and they’ve gotten more complicated.
So, marketing’s not as straightforward of a process for a business now.
“Marketers really have to evolve the way they think and the way they grow.”
Marketers really have to evolve the way they think and the way they grow. And those same concepts really hold true, but they’ve gone from yellow belt to black belt. You’ve really got to be able to evolve with it to make sure that you’re still going to be relevant. Your marketing is still going to be doing the job it’s meant to do.
That is very true. Well, cool, Robbie, man. I had a great time chatting. Definitely learned a lot.
Makes me want to even double down on retention. But yeah, if they’re looking to find out more about you and MKTG Rhythm, where can they be able to find you?
Again, we have a lot of great insights on MKTGrhythm.com.
We’re again producing blog posts on a weekly basis and even some podcasts now too.
And then if anybody gets really wild and wants to get an MBA, I also teach in the Clemson MBA Program. So you can join my class there too. I teach digital marketing strategy and social strategy.
So if you’re feeling really wild, that’s a place to do it.
Yeah. Well, if you got this far into the podcast, I think there’s actually some value that Robbie has been giving. So even more value for you to be able to check him out there.
And again, get to know these things really deeply. And if you couldn’t tell, I like talking about marketing. This is my love language. So it was a blast, Gabe. Again, thanks for the invite.
Thanks for listening to our podcast on customer retention with Robbie Fitzwater!
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