We live in a fast-paced world, and customers expect businesses to anticipate and address their needs in real-time. The rule of customer engagement demands them to be heard, receive answers to their questions, and have their problems fixed more quickly. They want to gain a positive experience from their favorite brands in ways that weren’t previously possible.
So, as a small business owner wanting to compete with the big guys in the industry, another priority you should be holding onto aside from bringing in new customers is customer engagement. This will help you retain loyal customers and increase your bottom line.
What is Customer Engagement?
Interacting with your customers and helping them feel a connection to your brand is crucial to foster business growth and loyalty. So how can you effectively do this?
First, we need to understand what customer engagement is.
Customer engagement is about building an emotional connection and encouraging your customers to interact with your brand through any channel, from in-person to online to over the phone. It focuses on fostering positive relationships with them and creating more value rather than revenue.
In other words, customer engagement is a collection of processes, tools, and resources you can use to provide a brilliant end-to-end customer experience.
Creating a strategy around these interactions can take customer engagement from reactive to proactive. And when done correctly, it will help keep your customers happy and bring new opportunities for your business.
Here are some of the benefits customer engagement strategies can offer to your small business.
Increased Customer Retention
An effective customer engagement strategy can help you retain more customers. Engaged customers will continue to spend more on your products and services and build long-term relationships with your business. Through customer engagement efforts, you can make them feel valued and connected to your brand. This will help you gain their loyalty and increase your profits ten folds.
Shorter sales cycle
A sales cycle is the time that it takes to complete a sale. Through customer engagement, your business can achieve a shorter sales cycle. Customers and other prospects can use customer engagement as a shortcut to get access to the information they need irrespective of wherever they are in the buying process.
Boosts marketing efficiency
Marketing efforts of today can go down the drain if they fail to capture customers’ interest. With effective customer engagement strategies in place, marketing strategies can achieve better results.
Through effective customer engagement, customers will be drawn more to your brand. You will be able to provide them with a positive customer experience and they will be able to differentiate your brand from your competitors.
Aside from these, customer engagement can bring positive online reviews, customer evangelism, and increased sales to your business. It will also help your small business gain referrals from friends or family members.
The way you treat your customers matters. If you are a small business owner looking for some strategies to improve customer engagement, this article is for you. We will help you engage with customers effectively, grow your business, and compete with the big guys.
Effective Customer Engagement Strategies
Many small business owners feel like they’re out of touch with their customers and don’t know where to start when it comes to engaging and retaining them.
We’ve compiled strategies to increase your customer engagement. You can try and test them yourself.
Take Advantage of Social Media
These days, one of the most effective engagement tools is social media. In fact, according to a survey by We Are Social, over 4.2 billion people around the world are active social media users. Create social media marketing strategies to connect to your target audience and build a connection with them on a personal level.
But always remember, these are not merely platforms for connecting with people. People do not go to social media just to connect with people, but they also go there to gain answers and solutions to their other problems.
According to Hootsuite, 40.4% of internet users are on social media for work purposes, and 44.8% of global internet users used social media to search for brand information in 2020. Use them to connect, share, identify questions, research influencers, and other experts, and create content that will address your audiences’ queries and grievances. You can also host various giveaways, organize contests, and provide customer support in your social media accounts.
So, how can you say that your customers are picking up what you’re posting?
More likes and comments on your social media pages mean they are impacting your audience. You can use the Insights section of each social media platform, where you can monitor your engagement over certain periods. You can also use social media to gather customer data and analyze it to get ahead of your competitors.
You also need to be fully active on social media so that you can respond to your customers immediately. Monitor your comment sections, and find out where your customers are most active to effectively engage with them. If you need help, you can assign a social media manager for this.
Retain and make your customers happier by using social media as an engagement tool.
Provide Useful Content
Achieving an improved level of customer engagement also requires making a content strategy that imparts the greatest value to them. This means giving them helpful and insightful content, strong customer support, or a superb end-to-end customer journey. Writing useful content for your social media platforms, email newsletters, business blogs, and creating tutorial videos for frequently asked questions. This can make a big impact in increasing customer engagement.
One important thing to consider when providing content to your audience is determining which pieces of content you can best use on each channel. Posting the same content on all your social media platforms can give a negative impact on your customer’s experience.
You can post how-to videos, DIY tips, and informational blogs on Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube. You can also search for the biggest trends on the internet and create content about them. If you don’t have time or you lack resources, you can give a fresh spin to your old content. Recycling your old content is both an effective and affordable way of making appealing content to your customers.
Did you get an awesome review on Yelp or Google? Keep tabs on what your customers say about your business in these online reviews.
If you have newly posted positive reviews, screenshot those and share them on all of your social platforms. Thank—and tag—the author for their kind words. This will encourage other customers to do the same.
If you have reviews, but they’re not all good, create strategies to deal with them. Understand what your customers want from your business by asking them so you can improve your products or services. Proactively asking your clients what they need and giving them what they want can help gain more customers for your business.
Reward Engagement by Holding Contests, Giveaways, and Discounts
Sometimes, you don’t need to reach out and encourage engagement. You can do these by giving rewards and incentives. Through these, your customers will sing praises for you without you asking them.
You can hold contests and giveaways online or on-site to boost customer engagement. You can utilize the tag a friend contest to make it go viral and reach more people. Perhaps, you can also design a loyalty program to offer points for your most loyal customers for their every purchase. Some other ideas for rewards and incentives include exclusive invites for special events and unadvertised discounts. Elevate this strategy by giving personalized gifts to reap maximum benefits.
Here are some tips for you to give the ideal prize that can provide you with more customer engagements:
- A good prize should get people excited. It should be of high value worth their time.
- It should give you a decent ROI or Return on Investment.
- It should also be uniquely appealing to your target audience.
Utilizing SEO Marketing Strategies
One of the most important aspects of getting more customer engagement is SEO marketing. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a vital digital marketing tool that can help drive more people to your site. This will help you build better relationships with them, improve customer experience, and increase conversions that can lead to more sales. You will also gain more loyal customers and more growth for your business.
Through SEO, your website will be more visible to more internet users. Do you know that a whopping 75% of users don’t look beyond the first page of online search results? Without this strategy, your website will not rank at the top of search results, and you will miss traffic, leads, and revenue for your business.
Here are some elements you can apply to your SEO marketing strategy to drive the best results:
- Relevant, long-tail keywords
- In-depth, quality site content
- Fast-loading website
- User-focused design
- Responsive design
- Voice search optimization
- Local SEO
- SEO analytics
If you need help creating an SEO marketing strategy that actually works for your business, we can help. Our team of digital experts can create a solid SEO marketing strategy that will help you drive more revenue for your business.
Engage with Your Customers
Responding to your customers’ concerns is another way to build customer engagement. If you don’t reply to their comments, messages, or call, they will stop engaging with you.
However, if you consistently respond to every message, call, or comment, whether it’s both good and bad, your customers will feel like they are being valued. They will feel more connected to you because they know you heard their concerns.
Be present in social media. Monitor the comment section. You can also message customers who post opinions of your business or mention you. Set up your account’s settings to notify you of mentions. And when customers want to have a person they can talk to about their concerns, make sure to call them to demonstrate added effort and provide them with a higher and more personal touch. Let your customers know you’re listening with an appropriate response.
Keeping Your Promises
Does your business make good on its promises? You might think it does, but do your customers agree?
Make sure your promotional strategies are consistent with the actual product you’re delivering. Check how your customers perceive your products and services by reading your customer surveys and reviews. This will help you in assessing customer challenges and growth opportunities.
Make sure your employees are also equipped to deliver on brand promises. They should embody brand experiences for customers. Do this by creating a work culture in which all employees know what their company stands for, their missions, and visions.
Equip them with training and other educational programs.
Another way to ensure brand promises is to become versed in the art of problem-solving. Correct negative customer experiences that don’t live up to your brand promises.
With so many businesses leading the charge on customer engagement, you can make simple tweaks that can make a big difference. Take one or two items from this list that seem manageable, and try them.
If you are struggling with customer engagement marketing, increasing revenues, and profit, Proweaver is here to help. We are ready to equip your small business to improve its customer engagement and gain more profits. We have over a decade’s worth of experience helping small to medium-sized organizations increase their bottom line with our full suite of services.
We have a team of outstanding developers, designers, SEO and SMM specialists, and content writers to boost your SEO rankings, provide you with a fully customized website, quality content writing, and more.
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