Do you know of any brand that doesn’t have at least one social media account on the various online platforms? I imagine you mentally running through every brand you know right now. Brands, whether B2B or B2C, have moved to online platforms to engage with a larger target audience all in a bid to creating awareness about their business and converting them to clients. While some seem to be getting it right, some are going round and round in circles without making any headway.The winners are smart businesses who understand the importance of being in close contact with their target market. By making communication and messaging less of their business and more of relevant content that connects with their target market, they have created online communities that houses loyal brand customers.Customer Engagement strategies are unique to every business as they are tailored to connect with their target market. To achieve the successes these “winning” or “hottest” brands record, a lot of background work went into crafting their strategy to fit like a glove.
Want to craft the right strategies too? Here are four important things to consider before starting off:
- What are the objectives/goals for customer engagement?
This is by far the most important thing to consider. Imagine trying to drive a car without an engine or driving it without a destination, nothing meaningful will come out of it. That is what trying to create a strategy without set objectives looks like. The answer to this question is a major decision that cannot be put off till another time.
Increase to the bottom line is more often than not the goal for businesses that crave customer engagement. To get the expected Return on Investment (ROI), the objective needs to be clearly defined as it forms a roadmap that guides the content direction of this engagement. This has to create a spark that resonates with the visitor so they turn to clients. It will also inform the choice of channel to focus on.
The success of a customer engagement strategy is a result-driven one. Either it is to increase brand loyalty or sales, clearly defined objectives ensures that the effort put into it yield the expected result.
- It is a mutually beneficial relationship:
Customers want to know that companies are listening to them. They will be loyal to brands that talks with them not at them. An effective customer engagement strategy ensures that everybody wins from this situation.
Globally, the best practice customer engagement approach is 80:20, 80 for customer centric content and 20 for brand/sales/commercialized content. This ensures that the online channels sounds less like a marketing zone. Brands that have recorded success in their customer engagement using this ratio will be quick to tell you that listening to their users is important for them. It’s free feedback that opens them up to a wealth of opportunities that they can leverage on for growth and an increased customer base. Customers see you listening to them and addressing their need, you on the other hand, improve your business. It’s the perfect win – win situation.
- The focus is on the Customer:
A customer engagement strategy ensures you never forget that ‘Customer is king’. While this is been said, do you know who your customer is? There is a need to identify your customers so you don’t send out mixed signals. If they have been clearly identified, it is essential to provide them with different avenues for them to communicate with you. Create accounts on platforms that house a large number of your target audience, respond to their enquiries when they ask, create easy customer service points – offline and online, your response time must be On Fleek.
Let’s not forget to add – your customer service game has to be the best in the game. Let them talk about it, let them brag to people they know that they are loyal to a brand that values them. There is no better marketing than word of mouth. Treating them as kings and giving them control ensures that you win their trust, grow a loyal community of customers and the best part is that you go to the bank smiling.
- The defining factor of your brand.
What is your vision? What message are you passing across that your competitor hasn’t been vocal about? What is your unique selling point? What fresh offering are you bringing to the table? These answers have to be answered so that your brand message is passed out strongly. If your message isn’t passed correctly, they may connect with your content but they may not convert. A result focused engagement strategy is driven by consistency of relevant/useful customer focused information
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