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9 ways to convert your audience

From lapsed buyer campaigns to mobile engagement apps, software can automate your public sector organization’s digital campaigns for better efficiency. Because at the end of the day, while it’s great to have organizational awareness, your agency success comes down to getting people to perform actions.

Get results by creating conversions with customized, action-based digital communications. Here are 9 ways you can convert your audience through communications technology (for more on what conversion is and why it’s important in the public sector, read this blog post).

1. Lapsed Buyer Campaigns

When a customer has gone a significant amount of time without interacting with your organization, they are considered a “lapsed” customer. Don’t take the lapse personally; many people just need an extra push to re-engage with your organization. In fact, Forrester reported that 30% of transactions by repeat shoppers started with a click on an email from the retailer.

Here is a real-life example: You can re-engage someone who purchased a license last year but didn’t purchase this year through an automated email. This communication tactic provides another opportunity to reinstate value proposition and convert a potential customer.

2. Cart Abandonment Campaigns

How many of us go to an e-commerce website and put an item in the cart, but fail to actually purchase it? So many organizations fail to re-engage abandoned cart customers, but it’s an opportunity lost. SaleCycle reported over a third of cart retrieval emails result in purchases.

Automate email campaigns to support abandon cart customers. For example, the Minnesota-based health insurance marketplace MNSure sends nudge messages to people who haven’t completed the enrollment process to remind them that they need to finish. Action-based messages to in-process enrollees, or enrollees who had begun the enrollment process but had not chosen a plan, had an open rate higher than any other message from MNsure.

On a federal level, Healthcare.gov also leverages software to execute abandon cart campaigns. GovDelivery helped power the email alerts for the site, which was the number one referrer to Healthcare.gov, and 1 million subscribers signed up for the Department of Health and Human Services’ ACA email list.

3. Cross-sell & Up-sell Content

Cross selling occurs when a marketer offers products from other categories that are somehow related, while upselling is when a more expensive or feature-rich product is offered up on a webpage, promotion, or email. These interrelated techniques are used a lot in the e-commerce space, but also work in the public sector. For example, say you are communicating on behalf of a Department of Natural Resources and a customer reserves a campsite. You can create content promoting a fishing license to those customers as well – this is the essence of cross- and up-selling.

4. Customer Lifecycle Management

Customer lifecycle management is all about delivering repeated and long-term messages based on customer needs through a progression of steps. These steps include considering, adopting, using, and maintaining loyalty to your organization’s products or services. With customer lifecycle management, you can send different messages at different stages of the customer lifecycle through customized communications.

For example, the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission could use product safety alerts for newborn products to new moms, and alerts for toddler toys as the child gets older. It adapts communications based on the age range of the baby, offering unique product information about recalls and safety tips.

5. Order Confirmations and e-Receipts

Another emerging digital trend is emailing receipts to customers instead of printing them out – or e-Receipts. Not only do you benefit the environment through online order confirmations and e-Receipts, it provides another opportunity to up-sell and cross-sell. At minimum, use e-receipts and confirmations to invite customers to sign up for your email program with a link and brief benefit statement.

6. Web and Portal Notifications

Password resets, account creation alerts, and thank you messages are all ways you can engage your customer through strategic, automated messaging. A 2013 study by the Ponemon Institute, revealed nearly half of the study’s respondents were unable to execute an online transaction due to some form of password authentication failure. Most of those failures were a result of users forgetting their passwords, so you can see the opportunity to market through notifications!

7. Tax & Grant Notifications

Though this area is not relevant to all public sector organizations, tax and grant notifications are great ways to improve the customer experience, driving on-time tax payments. Notifications can come in the form of a text message or email.

8. Mobile App Engagement

If you think email is the only channel where you can automate conversions, you are wrong. With around 80 percent of Americans owning a smartphone, you can see the opportunity of this channel. Text message alerts and mobile push notifications can drive engagement and conversions with little human intervention. The trick is to set up campaigns in a marketing platform, and then let the platform do the work!

9. License and Permit Renewals and Reminders

Renewals and reminders provide another opportunity to convert your audience. In fact, the New York Department of Motor Vehicles partnered with GovDelivery to create a renewal and reminder campaign. New York residents can get email and/or text reminders before their driver license, non-driver ID card, registration, or vehicle inspection expires, providing better customer service for New York residents.

The Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife also sends boat registration renewal reminders personalized with the boat number, renewal price, and a renewal link, making the process of boat permit renewals easy for customers. The ease of this process means more conversions and more revenue for the department.

Did we miss any other conversion tactic that works for the public sector? If so, connect with GovDelivery on Twitter (@GovDelivery) and continue the conversation!