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My name Is Matt and I am a huge marketing nerd. My blog is about providing practical marketing advice & tips you can apply to your business and campaigns.

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Preventing buyer’s remorse is the missing (vital) piece of your marketing strategy

Matthew TelferMatthew Telfer

For most businesses, customer marketing is based upon the premise their customers are comfortable with a purchase, instantly focusing on areas such as up-selling, cross-selling and engagement.

This is a mistake that increases cancellations and churn.

For businesses that sell expensive or complicated products (or businesses that are new to the market), the period immediately after purchase has the highest danger of cognitive dissonance (aka “buyer’s remorse”) and churn than at any other time.

Post Purchase cognitive dissonance is the phrase we give to the state of unease which exists in the customer’s mind after buying a product or service”

Source

In terms of your approach to marketing, these new customers share more in common with non-customer marketing.

In this post I will show you why proactive post-purchase validation is so important, and share ideas you can implement quickly and easily.

What is post-purchase validation?

Customer research doesn’t always end once a product/service has been bought. This is especially true if they are buying from someone new, or making a considered purchase.

A considered purchase is one that requires research, and is not done on a whim.

For example, from my perspective, toothpaste is a non-considered purchase (a low cost, low risk product).

A considered purchase would be a new PC, because it would require a lot of research to ensure my personal perceived risk factors are all ticked off.

Perceived risk is one of the cornerstones of consumer psychology. It deals with the psychological barriers that may prevent us from making a purchase:

A consumer’s level of uncertainty after a complex purchase decision typically sees them attempt to reduce their anxiety.

This is done by collecting more information post-purchase.

People want to be told they made the right choice

Post-purchase validation reassures us that we have not harmed ourselves in one of the ways described above.

The interesting thing here is, after buying a product consumers are not looking for objective content; they want/need it to be positive.

They want to be reassured it was the right choice, and not be told they may have made a mistake.

Renowned psychologist Robert Cialdini highlights our deep-seated psychological desire to stay true to that commitment, because it directly relates to our self-image.

We therefore attempt to rationalise any product problems seen, justify the choice made and protect our self-image.

This gives you a great opportunity to control the message and reassure your customers.

Your challenge is to continue addressing your customer’s’ perceived risk factors, and present content that plays into their desire to be proven correct in choosing you.

If you are not controlling the message, it means you have no influence over where they go looking for this content, or whether your customers are seeing positive or negative post-purchase content.

Combatting cognitive dissonance in your marketing

Purchase confirmation page

Immediately after purchase is a great opportunity to support and celebrate their purchase, especially by addressing social risk. e.g.

Thank you for purchasing

You just joined a community of 100,000 successful professional content marketers

Click here to login

Welcome email

Quite possibly your most important customer marketing tool, your welcome email serves a lot of functions.

One that is often overlooked is continuing to market to the customer, and reassure them they made the right choice.
Some ideas include:

First time they log-in to your control panel

Support your customers’ first use of their control panel by wrapping up useful onboarding with social proofing.

For example, lead with a message or pop-up:

Getting started

Find out how 100,000 fellow content marketers successfully use our software

Click here for our quick start guide

You don’t need to keep selling yourself repeatedly, so I would limit this to the first time they log-in to their control panel.

Follow-up communication

Don’t assume that new customers are happily using your product/service, or that dissatisfied customers will let you know.

A typical business hears from 4% of its dissatisfied customers

source

Send new customers an email 24 hours after purchase, asking them if they need any help and/or if they are satisfied with their purchase. Respond to any questions or dissatisfaction instantly.

Physical purchases

All these examples have dealt with digital products and communications, but the concept still applies to tangible products.

Include a note in your customer’s delivery orders about how other customers loved using your product.

Hello! My name is Matt and I have a serious passion for anything marketing related, both academically and professionally. I started writing this blog as a way of expressing my thoughts and opinions on marketing, and in response to the number of theoretical blogs out there that presume unlimited resources. My focus is on providing realistic and practical marketing advice you can apply to any business and campaign.

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