Education: The Retention Hack Nobody Is Talking About

Hi Friends!

SO much to get into this week, so let’s jump right into it.

“Retention” is a term thrown around to mean many different things in these circles, but at its core, it’s pretty simple.

Are your customers coming back and purchasing again?

In the last two weeks, we’ve chatted about “customer quality,” understanding basic customer retention metrics, and levers to pull to improve retention.

But there is one thing we still need to chat about: The role of education in customer retention.

Let’s get into it.

  • The Educational Advantage: How Providing Knowledge Sets You Apart

  • Pre-Purchase: Setting The Stage for a Seamless Red Carpet Experience

  • Beyond the Purchase: Leveraging Email and SMS to Increase Product Usage

This newsie is brought to you by HOOX, which provides landing pages that raise AOV, ROAS and your CFO's eyebrows.

Hoox (led by Nik Sharma) builds digital experiences for potential customers to learn about who you are, what you sell, how it helps them, and why you’re the best option on the market.

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As a new brand in a competitive space, Caraway hired HOOX to create landing pages for paid traffic coming from Google, Facebook, and its affiliate partners. They saw a 74% increase in conversion rate and a 32% decrease in the cost of customer acquisition while also lowering the time to purchase.

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Check out HOOX here.

The Educational Advantage: How Providing Knowledge Sets You Apart

I’ll kick this off with a hot take:

Product education is one of the biggest levers you can pull to transform your retention, only second to the product itself.

Now, this will be the only time you’ll ever hear me make a sports analogy, like ever, but here goes:

Product quality is like the football team's star quarterback - undeniably important and impressive on its own. But product education is like the coach who helps the quarterback perform at their best, and brings out the team's full potential.

(Did I do that right? Dad?)

Sure, the quality of the product matters, but without education, it's like playing a game without a strategy. Without education, the product is like a beautiful painting hanging in a dark closet.

If your product is seemingly great and folks are not returning and purchasing again, either they disliked it or didn’t see the value you saw from it.

That’s where education comes in.

Now, the practical implementation of “product education” might differ based on your space.

For example, Netflix’s #1 lever to keep folks paying monthly is ensuring they consistently watch new shows and consume content.

On the other hand, if you’re in the SaaS space, it might mean ensuring your customers know how to use your product to its fullest potential, AKA Customer Success teams.

Regardless of the space, brands can use education to ensure customers know how to get the most value from their products.

This can be done through various channels like email, in-app tutorials, webinars, etc. By providing educational resources, you’re ensuring more customers find the value in the product/service you are selling, giving the rest of your retention efforts a better shot at succeeding.

Pre-Purchase: Setting The Stage for a Seamless Red Carpet Experience

One of the most prominent issues I’ve seen in both SaaS and DTC is the disconnect and isolation between growth and retention.

Instead of viewing a customer's journey with your brand as one singular one, we’ve isolated pre-purchase and post-purchase and put two separate teams in charge of what happens.

Growth and Retention.

The growth team brings them in, and it’s on the retention squad to keep them there.

Alternatively, in SaaS land, SDRs and BDRs bring the new customer in with bold promises, and Customer Success teams try to make all those come true to keep them around.

What if we got together early on in the customer journey to bring education front and center to set expectations and ensure customers know how to utilize the product to meet those expectations?

The Ad Copy:

This is relevant with almost any product or service you are selling, but even more so if you are a category creator selling something with a more significant education curve.

Some of my favorite examples are Lomi and Jones Road.

Lomi created the first of its type countertop composter and needed to educate its potential customers about the problem and solution in a single Facebook ad; here’s one of my favorites.

Watch the video here.

Jones Road has a similar predicament with our Miracle Balm, the first of its kind on the market.

Link to the video here.

The Landing Page:

Many brands send customers directly from a Facebook ad to the product page, missing out on an excellent opportunity to roll out the red carpet and give customers a memorable and educational purchasing experience.

Take a look at the landing page some of our JRB customers go to, built by HOOX.

We cover the most crucial customer q’s:

  • What the product is

  • What the product does

  • Who the product is for

  • Note from Bobbi

  • Social proof

  • Videos

  • Etc.

A customer can land on this page knowing very little about the brand and leave the page ready to purchase—the perfect handover from an ad to a purchase.

Here’s a Lomi landing page worth looking at.

Some other fantastic landing pages:

P.S. These are all HOOX pages. 😏

The Product Page:

A well-formulated product page doesn’t just have your product, photos, and a “buy button.”

It also answers FAQs, helps sell your product, and educates.

Take a look at this one from Caraway.

They know that one of their biggest “reasons to believe” is their non-toxic materials, so they created space near their “add to cart” button.

Instead of having folks leave the page to go learn on an FAQ page and potentially bounce, or cause the CX team a ton of extra tickets, they added it right there.

Hexclad is another excellent example of adding relevant information on the product page, cultivated uniquely for their ideal shopper: an aspiring chef.

I love the product summary answering the #1 question: “If I spend $400 on six pcs, am I all set?”

Scroll down to see the review highlight with the heading “Real chefs people, Real reviews.”

Chef’s kiss (sorry).

Biggest learning: cater your PDP to potential customers, and ensure you answer questions and educate.

Beyond the Purchase: Leveraging Email and SMS to Increase Product Usage

Yeah, a splashy discount might be the easiest lever to pull to get people to return and purchase again, but here’s a more thoughtful approach:

Utilize your post-purchase email and SMS flows to re-sell the product and how it’s a solution to the problem they are trying to solve.

Specific categories such as mattresses and bikes might not be the easiest to get a second purchase from your customer using education.

However, it’ll still help customers get the most of what they spent their hard-earned money on, and ensure that they share your brand with a friend.

I love how SaaS companies think about this with customer success teams, but we are still hardly scratching the surface.

Instead of sending long plain-text emails justifying your latest price increase, get ahead of this by ensuring customers are leveraging your tool so well that they think the price is a steal.

You can undoubtedly sprinkle in some thoughtful upselling in your post-purchase flow, but first things first, make sure your customers deeply understand how to get value from the thing they just spent their hard-earned money on.

As marketers, we often get tangled in the things that “work” and forget the importance of being human and ensuring customers are happy before we upsell.

Joanne is putting her final touches on a substantial post-purchase flow we’ve been working on at JRB, and I’m excited to share some peeks once it’s ready to go live.

Going into it, our biggest priority was answering these questions:

  1. How can we make sure every customer uses this product correctly

  2. How can we highlight all the product usage occasions so that customers use this effectively?

  3. How can we ensure that we are there to answer any important customer question throughout their journey with us with zero-to-no friction?

Upselling and cross-selling came after that.

That’s it for this week!

Any topics you'd like to see me cover in the future?

Just shoot me a DM or an email!

See you next week,

Eli 💛