“We want you!”
Every business dreams of this: loyal customers! Which is to say, customers with a strong attachment to the brand, who follow the brand’s business, its representatives and who, in the best of worlds, even become ambassadors.
And so, of course there is an overflow of “how-tos” on how to build customer loyalty and one point that comes up again and again is that you have to know your customer! Obviously this is plain common sense, but what if we changed perspectives a little? What if, instead of constantly wanting to know more about your customers, you tried to get your customers to know more about you, your market and your products?
One of the pioneers of the “learning-to-business” approach was Leroy Merlin. The brand has long been offering “face-to-face” DIY classes to its customers and in 2015 launched “Le Campus”, the first MOOC on DIY. The idea is simple: by enabling as many people as possible to upgrade and improve their skills in a given area, we facilitate the act of buying (“at the end of the day, it doesn’t seem so complicated”) and there is a good chance that when choosing, the customer/learner will remember the brand that helped him make this choice, usually free of charge.
But particular uses aren’t limited to vibrating sanders or the laying of gypsum board. More complex and intangible products such as banking or financial services can also be covered. To reassure, explain and facilitate, all to make the act of buying more fluid. This is the essence of LinXea Academy, co-produced with Coorpacademy.
And here it is that we find our infamous loyal customer! With a tool of this kind, a brand turns a prospect who wasn’t sure about buying a product into a customer who will instinctively prefer to buy the product from you. The transition from “target” to “loyal customer” is speedy!
But of course this isn’t a magic formula. If your online course gives the appearance of an advertising brochure, your visitors will have every opportunity to realise it and go their merry way. So you have to train your future customers in the most “objective” way possible. Even if your brand is the best, there are subtle ways of getting the message out, without beating down your competitors! The key word is pedagogy: a visitor has to leave your website better informed and more knowledgeable than he was before, with all his questions answered.
There are obviously other advantages to training your customers or future customers with digital learning tools:
- The first of these is the identification and qualification of your course users. With a tool of this kind, you have information about visitors who are probably this close to buying since they conducted a thorough investigation. It’s now up to you to find the best way to convert them: promotion, cross-selling offer; there are numerous levers there to help.
- The second is the building of a community: every good digital learning tool also offers you social features. You’ll then begin to see “heavy users” or rather “heavy learners” on your platform. You can then reward them by offering them more visibility to create true brand ambassadors.
Once you’ve begun training your customers, don’t just leave it at that. Some brands have deployed innovative measures to train the rest of their ecosystem: suppliers, distributors, future employees, etc. To be continued in the next episode.
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