Whether your company markets to consumers or other businesses, long-term relationships are crucial to success. The lifetime value (LTV) of each new customer should be part of your sales and marketing strategies, determining where you choose to focus your efforts. Unfortunately, too many businesses make the mistake of waiting until they've landed new customers to determine what value they'll bring to their organization.

Although all businesses should focus on LTV for each customer, for B2B companies, that value is most often tied to an entire account, rather than a person. A business forms a relationship with another business, then nurtures that relationship through ongoing contact with one or more persons at that company. Recurring billing-based businesses like software service providers can especially benefit from finding ways to increase customer retention, particularly if they can find ways to upsell those customers on features or additional items.

Fortunately, businesses don't have to spend years trying to figure out how to calculate LTV for their target audiences. There are several tools on the market that can help marketing and sales teams hone their efforts to greater success. Here are a few top tools that may help your business increase your revenue.

LTV-Optimized Lead Generation

Sales teams have little control over the quality of their inbound leads, simply responding to the customers who show an interest. With outbound marketing, though, businesses are in control, selecting the companies they target based on established criteria. LeadGenius can improve this process dramatically, using a combination of human and artificial intelligence to identify leads. With this tool, you'll be able to optimize your leads for LTV at the top of the funnel with a plan that helps you reach the ideal market for your brand.

NPS Tracking

Is your business attracting the type of customer who will not only stay with your company, but will recommend it to others? One way to ensure you're getting the right type of attention is to keep your Net Promoter Score (NPS) high. Tools like Qualtrics, Delighted, and Promoter.io can help you boost your ranking to ensure you attract the very type of loyal customer your business needs.

Customer Appreciation

One of the best ways to ensure longevity in your customer relationships is to show them they're appreciated. Take extra measures to go above and beyond for your customers, such as mailing gifts. Small surprises at the right stages of the customer lifecycle can make a big difference in your retention efforts. PFL specializes in helping you identify opportunities and act on them so that you can provide the best customer service in your industry.

Real-Time Feedback Generation

Customer service is one of the biggest factors in customer retention. Only 14 percent of customers leave a business because of issues with the products or services it offers, while 68 percent leave because they're unhappy with the way they were treated. The sooner your business can identify problems, the more likely you'll be able to resolve them before the customer leaves. Zendesk automates the process of collecting real-time feedback from customers to help you stay in tune with what your customers are experiencing.

Onboarding

Once you've convinced a customer to do business with you, it's time to make a good impression. Tour My App helps software providers with the onboarding process, with easy-to-use tools for creating tutorials that walk customers through your app. Instead of handing over a text-intensive user manual, Tour My App invites them to learn more about how to use the software the first time they log in.

Cross-Selling and Upselling

Your existing customers may not even realize you offer upgrades or additional products that can help them. When timed perfectly, the right offer can add revenue while also improving the experience for your own customer. Autosend uses predefined triggers to send emails or text messages to customers when they perform certain activities. In addition to built-in split-testing capabilities, Autosend also integrates with many popular solutions, making it likely you'll be able to filter your customers by groups.

Tracking and Analytics

If you aren't monitoring what customers are doing, you're already behind the competition. Mouseflow lets you watch your website visitors' mouse movements to learn more about what aspects of your site are getting the most attention. Over time, you'll gain the insights you need to drive conversions from each of your pages. This is especially helpful on pages where customers sign up to get more information or make a purchase. You may be losing potential long-term customers because one of your forms is throwing back a submission error every time customers try to complete it. With the right tool in place, you know this right away so that you can make changes.

For many businesses, one-time customers aren't the goal. With the right tools in place, you'll be able to build long-lasting relationships with each new customer who discovers your business. You'll also have the customer service in place to impress those customers enough to recommend you to others, helping you grow your audience considerably.

Published on: May 16, 2017