Content Marketing

Customer Loyalty 101: How to Retain and Upsell With Content Marketing

When content marketing helps you close a sale, it can feel like scoring a flawless slam dunk. But constantly chasing new deals is more akin to doing endless running drills on the court—tiring, repetitive, and maybe even a bit disheartening at times.

To achieve long-term success for your business, don’t underestimate the role of customer loyalty. Just like a full-court defense strategy in basketball, investing in retention and upselling not only makes it difficult for competitors to steal customers away but also boosts customer lifetime values, referrals, and positive reviews.

So how can you jumpstart this virtuous cycle of growth and success with content marketing? Read on to find out.

How to Score Big With Retention and Upselling in Content Marketing

When it comes to content marketing, we often hear about the funnel comprising awareness, consideration, and conversion, but we sometimes forget the last stage: loyalty.

The marketing funnel

For sustainable business growth, driving loyalty through retention and upselling tactics should be at the forefront of your marketing strategy. After all, studies have found that retaining an existing customer is anywhere from five to 25 times cheaper than converting a new one. At the same time, increasing retention rates by a mere 5% can increase profits from anywhere between 25% and 95%.

Beyond unlocking savings in the realm of ads and outbound marketing, investing in customer retention also means enjoying the power of word-of-mouth marketing—where a community of raving fans not only comes back for more but also spreads the word about your business, all without you having to lift a finger.

Meanwhile, upselling is like the cherry on top of the sundae that takes your revenue growth to the next level. By promoting complementary or upgraded products or services to your existing customers, you increase their lifetime value and strengthen the relationship and trust they have with your brand.

Why Content Marketing Is the MVP of Retention and Upselling

Content marketing is your secret weapon for retention and upselling—here’s why:

  • Builds trust: Providing informative and relevant content means you can better establish your brand’s expertise and credibility, which, over time, deepens your customers’ confidence in what you have to offer.
  • Creates connections: Sharing content that resonates with your customers is key to building a sense of community and strengthening your relationship with otherwise one-time buyers.
  • Promotes your value proposition: Content marketing lets you highlight the benefits of your products or services in a non-salesy way, upping the chances that customers explore your offerings beyond their initial purchases.

Content Marketing Pro Tips: 6 Ways to Retain and Upsell Customers

Engaging and useful content keeps customers interested and invested in your brand. So whether you’re a small business owner or a marketing professional, consider using these actionable tips and best practices to power up your retention and upselling efforts.

1. Create in-depth product guides or tutorials.

Developing product tutorials or how-to videos demonstrating the full range of features of your products or services can help customers get the most out of their purchases, which can increase their satisfaction and, hopefully, loyalty.

An example of Canva

Meanwhile, in-depth guides about your products or services allow customers to better grasp the full picture of any additional benefits your company can offer, which sets the stage for upselling upgrades that promise additional value.

2. Offer exclusive content.

By sharing exclusive content (such as webinars, ebooks, and behind-the-scenes sneak peeks) with your loyal VIPs, you deepen the relationship with your biggest fans and remind them that you deliver value beyond your products or services.

3. Invest in your resources.

Posting resources (like blogs, guides, and infographics) that tap into the latest insights relevant to your customers can help keep them engaged and encourage them to return for more. Additionally, resources establish your brand as an authority within your industry and help new customers find you, too.

Lululemon, for example, offers various downloadable training plans for running.


In terms of upselling, you can also use your resources to introduce new products or services, perhaps even spotlighting the inspiration behind it or diving into the research and development process.

4. Showcase product or service comparisons.

By creating content that compares different versions or tiers of your products or services, clients can begin to recognize the benefits of upgrading. Similarly, content such as recommendation quizzes or gift guides can support any cross-selling or bundling efforts.

5. Provide personalized content.

When customers feel like a brand recognizes their individual needs and preferences, they are more likely to feel appreciated and supported—that’s why brands should always strive to create personalized content closely aligned with their niche customer segments. For example, you might use data such as a customer’s past purchases, browsing behavior, or demographic information to deliver a weekly curated list of blogs to their inbox.

6. Share case studies and success stories.

With 98% of customers reading reviews before they shop, it’s unsurprising that social proof via case studies or success stories can go a long way in demonstrating the real-life benefits of your products or services, which encourages customers to continue shopping with you or exploring your other offerings.

A chart showing how often customers read customer reviews

Turn One-Off Shoppers Into Diehard Fans

When it comes to game-changers for your business, content marketing is an obvious tactic to add to your playbook. By helping you build trust, connect with your audience, and nurture customer relationships, it’s a must-have for both retention and upselling.

So make sure you’re using content marketing to give the same attention to retention and upselling efforts as you are to closing new deals—trust us: It won’t be long until you score big.

Want more tips on how to win the content marketing game? Subscribe to The Content Strategist newsletter for more guides like this delivered straight to your inbox.

Image by jadamprostore

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