Acquisition Marketing: Top Strategies for Profitable Growth

Acquisition Marketing - Top Strategies for Profitable Growth

What is acquisition marketing? Acquisition marketing refers to the strategies and tactics used to attract and convert new customers or users for a business. It focuses on bringing potential customers into the sales funnel and guiding them towards making a purchase or taking a desired action.

Acquisition marketing is all about finding and converting new customers to grow your business, with strategies and tactics tailored to engage potential customers who are most likely to be interested in your brand — and to stay interested to help you deliver on your revenue goals.

But with more and more privacy regulations and third-party cookie deprecation on the horizon, it’s important to build a modern and flexible acquisition marketing strategy built to keep you growing.

Here we’ll explore key acquisition marketing strategies that can help your business grow quickly, with key benefits, use cases, technology and customer stories to get you on your way to a smarter acquisition future.

Key Takeaways

  • Acquisition marketing is about targeting specific potential customers through strategies like advertising, social media, and acquisition marketing to grow your business.
  • Leveraging customer data is crucial for reaching different segments of your target market and making the most of your acquisition efforts.
  • Measuring success in acquisition marketing involves tracking key metrics like Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to refine and optimize strategies continually.

Acquisition Marketing in the Modern World

Acquisition Marketing in the Modern World

Acquisition marketing is the art of winning the hearts and wallets of new customers. At the core of customer acquisition is a customer acquisition strategy that doesn’t just cast a wide net but specifically and strategically targets consumers that are most likely to engage with your brand. When we talk about customer acquisition strategies, customer acquisition refers to the tailored approaches that go beyond general brand awareness campaigns, zeroing in on prospects who may already be looking in your direction. Some overarching key acquisition marketing strategies include.

  • Paid Advertising
  • Social Media
  • Email marketing
  • Website Optimization

By implementing these strategies, you can effectively acquire new customers and grow your business.

By orchestrating marketing activities across a range of customer acquisition channels, businesses can court their target market effectively. The ultimate goal is to guide these potential customers through the buying process, transforming them from casual acquaintances into loyal advocates of your brand. Some key customer acquisition channels include:

  • Google Ads
  • Meta
  • Bing Ads
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • TikTok
  • The Trade Desk
  • Yahoo
  • Criteo

By utilizing these channels, businesses can reach their target audience and potential new customers to build a strong customer base.

Key Benefits of Acquisition Marketing

The opportunity of acquisition marketing lies in its potent impact on business growth. By paving multiple pathways to your brand, acquisition marketing campaigns accelerate business growth, increasing revenue and (with the right tools) increasing profitability by saving margins. It’s not just about short-term gains; acquisition marketing is the linchpin that sustains and grows revenue, ensuring the longevity of your business’s success.

The benefits of better acquisition marketing include:

  • Increase Return on Ad Spend (RoAS)
  • Decrease Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)
  • Increased Conversion Rate
  • Increased Click-Through Rate (CTR)
  • And with the right tool, increased efficiency and operational benefit

But the benefits don’t stop there. Each new customer acquired brings new insights, contributing to your business through their purchases, feedback, and referrals. By increasing your reach and securing a larger slice of the market pie, you’re not just edging ahead of the competition; you’re setting the pace.

But to best reach your customers, you need the right foundation for a flexible future of acquisition. That means focusing your efforts on your first-party data.

Leveraging First-Party Data for Acquisition Marketing

In customer acquisition, data is what helps you achieve better and better results. Imagine knowing not just who’s interested in your brand, but also what they’re looking for and how they interact with your content.

This intel isn’t just for show; it’s a critical component of crafting more effective acquisition marketing campaigns. By syncing data, you’re equipping your sales and marketing teams with the knowledge they need to:

  • engage and convert high-value prospects efficiently
  • make every marketing dollar work harder and smarter
  • ensure that your acquisition efforts hit the mark every time

With your first-party data, you can get smarter about targeting across paid channels while bringing in higher quality leads – think less junk traffic, more qualified leads that are primed and funnel-ready.

Below, we’ll take a look at strategies that you can use in the post-cookie environment to reach the right audiences at the right time, strategies you can take to make your campaigns count, and stories from fellow brands who have supercharged their efforts to rein in new leads for less.

Designing an Effective and Flexible Acquisition Marketing Strategy After Third-Party Cookies

Designing an Effective and Flexible Acquisition Marketing Strategy After Third-Party Cookies

Traditionally, solutions built on third-party cookies could support acquisition strategies. Now, brands need to reorient their strategy around first-party data and go in favor of interoperable solutions.

The Before State

Old solutions like data onboarders and used to help brands find the send first-party customer data to a separate online environment to be matched with digital identifiers.

The fact is that media onboarding fees are expensive — and not necessary to onboard for some channels such as Meta, Google, Bing and Yahoo. Now, brands can activate directly to walled gardens without copying data with an onboarding solution first, which incurs added cost as well as inefficient workflow copying the data with an intermediary identity.

Brands that rely on Data Management Platforms (DMPs) will also find themselves in need of a new solution for launching those key use cases. The truth is high costs and questionable accuracy have always hampered the usefulness of DMPs, and now, with their third-party cookie foundation set to disappear as a result of Google’s decision, their long-term value is negligible.

So how do you keep executing on your DMP use cases — such as prospecting, retargeting and real-time web personalization — without a DMP? You do what your industry peers are doing and deploy a customer data platform (CDP).

Cutting-Edge Acquisition Solutions Now

There is no one-size-fits-all solution for acquisition marketing right now. Rather, it’s important to keep an open and flexible strategy so marketers can test, learn and grow to find the best ways to snag new customers.

There will be constant variances in these outcomes, depending on the brands category, its media mix, its technology stack, its business objectives, its defined marketing use cases and campaigns, future fluctuations in the market, etc.

Cutting-Edge Acquisition Solutions Now

Key Acquisition Marketing Use Cases

You can create the most compelling creative for your marketing campaigns—from engaging text to strong visuals—and it won’t matter unless you have the right foundation for reaching your customers through first-party data.

Traditionally, acquisition marketers could use third-party cookies to follow and advertise to their prospects across channels. But with signal degradation coming from third-party cookie deprecation and increasing privacy regulations, brands will need to design a strategy around first-party data to succeed.

Below, we’ll take a look at some key acquisition marketing use cases you can launch with your own first-party data.

Prospecting Direct to Paid Media

In the wake of third-party cookie deprecation, walled gardens like Meta, Google, Bing and DSPs like Yahoo and The Trade Desk have made huge strides in their direct first-party activation capabilities in ways that connect with their own proprietary identity graphs.

This means that organizations can activate directly to walled gardens without copying data with an onboarding solution first, which incurs added cost as well as inefficient workflow copying the data with an intermediary identity.

Rather than contend with increased customer acquisition costs (CAC), reduced efficiency and match rates that aren’t measuring up, brands can embrace a more flexible solution to identity with their first-party data.

Prospecting With Lookalikes

Use all your first-party data to find higher quality leads through lookalike audiences. Increasingly, brands are turning to first-party data to model best customers, and pass attributes about their best customers directly into ad platforms like Google and Meta to target lookalikes among the prospect base. The result is a significant drop in acquisition costs and improves conversion rates.

Website Personalization

When a new visitor hits your site, give them personalized experiences using your data. On a user’s first visit to a site, execute real-time experiences delivery with the last-mile delivery system that serves experiences based on enriched identity.

If there’s an existing first-party cookie with a footprint of that user, you can then build a profile around that user. If they’re authenticated, an email or customer ID would be used to make a profile around them. Profile API returns in real time the personalization factor to then orchestrate experiences which can then be replicated.

Retargeting

Did a new user hop off their site before taking any of the actions you want them to? That means it’s time for a retargeting campaign. Retargeting means targeting prospects who have visited your website and left without taking the action you wanted them to.

WIth a robust tag/SDK infrastructure that collects behavioral signals paired with the ability to synchronize and centralize various (non-third-party cookie) identity standards to maximize addressability. This allows you to serve up ads to recently-engaged accounts to remind them of what they’re missing over on your site.

Paid Media Suppression

Do you need to control your acquisition costs? With paid media suppression, you can stop wasting money on customers who have already converted by programmatically removing them from paid media advertising – think lower RoAS, higher CAC.

Add additional layers of intelligent suppression with filters, so you can get even more granular with the audience you’re targeting on paid media. Conversely, you can target shoppers with a particular product affinity on paid media as a mid-funnel and bottom-of-funnel tool.

How CDPs Support Acquisition Marketing

When brands embrace first-party data in their acquisition strategy, they experience higher match rates by activating directly. With a direct connector to primary channels within a brand’s media mix, brands can activate audiences quickly and easily.

  1. Choose Your Identities
    Don’t get locked with Ramp ID, leverage a private ID graph composed of any ID you need, generated by your systems or provided by vendors, for both anonymous and known users.
  2. Self-serve Your Audiences
    Use your first-party data to create highly customized audiences that are optimized with native lookalike modeling.
  3. Activate Directly on Paid Properties
    Reduce onboarding dependency and costs by syndicating anonymous and known audiences directly to your preferred walled gardens and demand-side platforms (DSP).
How CDPs Support Acquisition Marketing

Benefits of Acquisition Marketing With a CDP

There are many benefits of moving to a first-party, flexible foundation with a CDP.

Cost Savings

Eliminate expensive and inefficient DMP technology with future-proof solutions.

Revenue Growth

Optimize targeting and use advanced segmentation and lookalike modeling to reduce customer acquisition costs.

Flexible Strategy

Stitch together first- and third-party ID graphs to avoid lock-in and adapt to a changing identity market.

Optimizing Your Acquisition Marketing Strategy

The landscape of acquisition marketing is ever-changing, and staying ahead means never standing still. Optimizing your strategy is about constant evolution, analyzing performance, and tweaking your approach to stay aligned with your business objectives and market trends.

Whether it’s enhancing website conversions or embracing the flexibility to pivot when necessary, optimization ensures your acquisition marketing remains agile and effective.

Testing and Iterating Campaigns

In the laboratory of marketing, testing and iterating are the experiments that bring breakthroughs. By continuously refining your campaigns, you sharpen your ability to attract and convert new customers. It’s about setting a timeframe, collecting data, and analyzing performance to uncover the formula for acquisition success.

Case Studies of Successful Acquisition Marketing With a CDP

Atlassian Decreases RoAS by 50% and Launches Better LinkedIn Ads

Atlassian wanted to make the most out of its paid media by getting smarter about customer segmentation. To do it, Atlassian runs 90% of its media through ActionIQ. By enabling paid media suppressions, Atlassian decreased costs while improving match rates on its performance media and increased efficiency of its marketing spend — unlocking marketing dollars to reinvest.

Atlassian also designed winback journeys to prevent churn and bring its audience back into the fold with dynamic paid media ads across channels, with personalized content and messaging.

Bloomberg Increases Match Rates and Audience Sizes by 500%

Take Bloomberg. With a customer data platform (CDP), Bloomberg expanded access to multiple acquisition channels, and created an audience layer with anonymous web visitors, registered users and paying subscribers in one central hub accessible to the company’s business users. The success is in the numbers — with their investment in first-party data to power acquisition strategies, they saw a 500% increase in audience size and match rates and a 76% decrease in cost of acquisition.

Michael Kors Reduces Customer Acquisition Costs

Due to Apple and Google’s measures to curb third-party tracking, Michael Kors had to overcome severe limitations on its growth strategies and ability to understand customer behavior — particularly with the majority of visitors using mobile browsers. They had limited visibility into unknown visitors to digital properties, and less insight into returning website visitors and metrics related to repeated visits.

Using ActionIQ, Michael Kors was able to ingest all customer data to create audiences, extract insights and orchestrate customer experiences across top paid media channels, as well as walled gardens, demand-side platforms and ad networks. With a durable customer ID, they personalized experiences for unknown website visitors and collected additional identifiers. This led to improved attribution, and lowered CAC.

Measuring Customer Acquisition Success

After pouring your heart and soul into acquisition marketing, how do you know if your efforts are paying off? The answer lies in the numbers. To measure customer acquisition success, it’s about tracking metrics that tell the story of your campaign’s performance, from the swell in your customer base to the efficiency of your marketing spend.

It’s about turning data into insights that shape your future strategies.

Calculating Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)

The customer acquisition cost (CAC) metric is the beacon that guides your marketing ship through the fog of financial uncertainty. By dividing your marketing costs by the number of customers acquired, you gain clarity on the value of each new addition to your customer base. It’s a straightforward yet powerful formula that evaluates the effectiveness of your acquisition strategies and helps you optimize customer acquisition costs.

But CAC isn’t just a number; it’s a reflection of your marketing health. A high CAC might signal the need for optimization, while a low CAC could indicate your campaigns are running with well-oiled efficiency. It’s the pulse-check that keeps your acquisition efforts in line with your financial goals.

Tracking Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

Stepping into the world of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) is like navigating by the stars; they provide direction and insight into your acquisition marketing efforts. Whether it’s the glow of brand awareness or the steady beacon of sales and revenue, these metrics illuminate the path to success. By tracking KPIs like website traffic and customer engagement, you can refine your strategies, ensuring they resonate with your target audience.

But it’s not just about immediate wins. Understanding the long-term value of a customer, through metrics like customer lifetime value (LTV), provides a panoramic view of your business’s future profitability. With a comprehensive reporting template, you can transform these metrics into a map that guides your acquisition journey, allowing you to navigate with precision and purpose.

Summary

As we bring this exploration of acquisition marketing to a close, remember that growth is not a one-size-fits-all journey. The strategies we’ve traversed—from paid advertising to compelling content, from customer stories to diversified channels—all share a common goal: to acquire new customers and fuel business growth. Armed with data, guided by the customer acquisition funnel, and constantly refining your approach, you’re now ready to chart a course toward an ever-expanding horizon.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is acquisition marketing?

Acquisition marketing is about to the strategies and tactics used to attract and convert new customers or users for a business. It focuses on bringing potential customers into the sales funnel and guiding them towards making a purchase or taking a desired action.

Key aspects of acquisition marketing include:

  • Identifying target audiences
  • Creating awareness of products or services
  • Generating leads
  • Converting prospects into customers

Common acquisition marketing channels and methods include:

  • Search engine optimization (SEO)
  • Pay-per-click advertising (PPC)
  • Social media marketing
  • Content marketing
  • Email marketing
  • Affiliate marketing
  • Influencer partnerships

The goal is to efficiently acquire new customers while managing costs and maximizing return on investment (ROI).

Why is it important to diversify marketing channels?

Diversifying marketing channels is important because it maximizes reach, mitigates risk, and ensures a broader target audience is reached, ultimately driving more customers into the sales funnel. This strategy leverages the unique strengths of different channels, from social media to email marketing.

How can I measure the success of my customer acquisition efforts?

You can measure the success of your customer acquisition efforts by tracking metrics such as customer acquisition cost (CAC), customer lifetime value (CLV), conversion rates, and click-through rates. These metrics provide insight into the performance of your marketing efforts and highlight areas for improvement.

What role does content marketing play in acquiring new customers?

Content marketing is crucial in acquiring new customers because it helps businesses establish brand authority, attract leads, and guide prospects in making informed decisions, ultimately building trust and authority in the industry. This way, businesses can engage and educate their target audience effectively.

Can customer stories really help in acquiring new customers?

Yes, sharing customer stories can definitely help in acquiring new customers by building trust, demonstrating value, and providing social proof that influences purchasing decisions. Customer stories, whether through videos, case studies, or blog posts, resonate with potential customers and can significantly impact their decision-making process.

Julia Michaelis
Julia Michaelis
Sr. Content Marketing Manager
Julia is a product and brand storyteller, focusing on all of the different strategies that enable amazing customer outcomes. She lives in Brooklyn with her terrier Lee.
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