5 Customer Engagement Strategies For Business Growth

One of the keys to running a successful business is effectively engaging with your customers.

In our fast-paced and competitive world, gaining and keeping people’s attention is getting ever more challenging. In order to attract loyal customers, you have to give them reasons to keep coming back. Let’s look at some creative ways to engage your customers using digital marketing.

1. Encourage Customer Feedback

Part of engaging with customers is listening to their needs and even their complaints. Sometimes people will tell you what they think without prompting. However, in many cases, they need a certain amount of encouragement. Think of as many ways as possible to open dialogues with your customers, readers, and followers.

  • Post polls and surveys on your website and social media pages.
    Ask questions about people’s most pressing problems related to your industry, their experiences using your products, and their opinions about your industry. Remember to ask some basic information related to demographics as well so you have a better idea of who your customers are.
  • Monitor your reviews.
    It’s always a good idea to respond to reviews on Google, Yelp, Angie’s List, or anywhere else your customers leave feedback. Thank people for positive reviews and address complaints. Some customers will even remove or update negative feedback if they see you’re trying to remedy the problem.
  • Ask readers to leave comments on your blog and social media pages.
    Ask questions. Even an open-ended question at the end of an opinion piece such as “Do you agree? Please share!” encourages people to respond. When someone does leave a comment, always respond.
  • Have a system in place where people can leave feedback after contacting customer support.
    Ask them to rate the support they received and ask specific questions about what they liked or didn’t like. As well as star ratings, leave a space for people to leave comments in case they have particular remarks.

2. Personalize Your Business

It’s not always easy to make personal connections when you run a business. It’s important to remember, though, that customers make buying decisions for emotional as well as rational reasons.

They’re far more likely to choose you over the competition if they feel some kind of personal connection. If you treat business as a series of impersonal transactions, however, you won’t be engaging with people on an emotional level.

Put a human face on your business. Share a little about yourself in your blog posts, social media, and emails. You don’t have to tell people every aspect of your life but don’t hide behind a corporate logo.

Encourage your team members to do the same. Post photos of yourself and your team on social media and on your website. Post short bios of your team.

The way you communicate with customers and prospects can also make a big difference. You can also personalize your website with features such as live chat, customer testimonials, and geolocation marketing.

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3. Build an Online Community

Some of the most successful businesses in the digital age have figured out how to build large, engaged communities.

Lego Ideas is one of the best examples of a thriving online community built around a brand. Members exchange experiences about Lego projects and can even submit their own design ideas.

PlayStation is another company that has built a very active online community. It helps, of course, that gamers tend to be enthusiastic about their pursuits.

Online communities can encompass multiple channels, including a forum on your website, social media pages, a YouTube channel and anywhere else where you have a strong presence.

The beauty of community is that your members act as brand ambassadors. Of course, you may not have the resources of a major brand. You can still, however, take steps to build a community around your brand.

Creating a forum is a good place to start. A loyalty program with generous rewards encourages people to spread the word about your business.

Social media contests, especially ones where followers submit their own photos and videos, is another way to create a sense of community.

4. Host “Live” Events

Going “live” online is a powerful way to engage with your customers. Any event is more exciting when it’s live. Here are a few ideas.

  • Broadcast on Facebook Live or another live streaming video platform.
    You can use these events to answer questions, showcase new products, or give people an inside look at your business.
  • Create a webinar.
    This is something you can do as a one-time event or as a regular presentation. You might interview an expert, field questions, or discuss an important issue facing your customers. Record your webinars so they can be posted as videos.
  • Publicize it.
    Publicize it with email and social media to spread news and information about the event.

5. Engage Your Customers With Email

Email is still a powerful way to stay engaged with your customers.

Email is one of the few types of digital marketing where you have almost complete control of the process.

On social media, your content appears on a third-party site. Even your website depends on SEO for its ranking. With email, you don’t depend on the algorithms of Google or Facebook. This means you can customize everything to your own specifications.

Here are some guidelines to engage better with your list.

  • Personalize your messages.
    One of the benefits of email marketing is that you can address people by name.
  • Segment your list.
    Rather than sending everyone the same messages, create multiple lists based on your customers’ preferences and buying history. This ensures that people are getting the most targeted emails.
  • Use retargeting.
    Email works well with retargeting campaigns. When people visit your website or look at a certain product, you can remind them with an email. Email is also useful for reducing shopping cart abandonment.
  • Track analytics.
    One of the benefits of email is that it’s easy to track data and learn more about your audience. Measure open rates and conversions based on elements such as subject lines, calls-to-action, and the best time of day to send messages.

Find More Ways to Engage

There are many ways to engage more effectively with your customers. In addition to the above tips, try to think of others that are tailored to your particular business and industry.

In all of your marketing efforts, think beyond merely selling products and services.

Think of how you can make a stronger personal connection with each customer, follower, or subscriber.

By: Frank DePino

Frank DePino is Principal and Founder of Mediaboom. Since 2002, Frank has led Mediaboom’s award-winning staff of creative and technical professionals building the most effective marketing and advertising solutions for its clients.

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