How to keep customers engaged with your business
By: Ilan MannAugust 9, 2021
We live in an increasingly “instant” society. From drive-thru restaurants to Amazon Prime, people rely on prompt service – often at the expense of the deep relationships businesses once had with their customers. It makes it difficult to engage the way businesses once did. Fortunately, there are things you can do to keep your customers engaged with your business, using approaches that weren’t always available to the businesses of yesteryear.
The great news is that these are key components of outstanding customer service that will work for e-commerce and in-store sales – giving you greater opportunities for customer engagement than ever before. Here are a few key things you can do to improve customer engagement with your business and ensure greater customer loyalty – long after a purchase or transaction.
The value you create for your customers doesn’t just stop at the service or product you provide. By serving as a resource for them, you establish a relationship of mutual value with them. They will see you as an important asset to have in their lives, and they’ll want to remain connected with your business.
You can do this by sharing whitepapers, guides, infographics, and even ebooks detailing information that your customers will find of value, even if it isn’t directly related to your product. You can also provide tips that will help customers use your products or services more effectively. Lastly, you share success stories of how other people use your products or services to achieve great results and inspire your target audience.
Get Social to Build Relationships
Social media is a boon for businesses of all sizes. Of course, it is only what you make of it. If you don’t invest your time and attention toward creating a strong social media presence, it can’t really pay off for your business.
However, social media offers small businesses a free platform to reach out to their customers for various reasons. You can use social media to ask for customer feedback, announce new products and services, showcase your team members, and engage in conversations that are relevant in the communities where your business operates.
The more social media platforms you use to engage your customers, the greater your engagement is likely to be. Some of the top platforms you might want to consider for your business include Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and TikTok.
Another popular option that requires a little more planning and work on your part is YouTube. Here you can make videos about practically anything related to your business and post them for current and future engagement with your customers.
The idea is to post frequently and respond to customer questions and complaints as they arise. Believe it or not, how you respond to complaints made on social media can have a massive impact on how customers view your business and your brand.
Contests and competitions, especially those where prizes are involved, build engagement and deepen customer loyalty. They are incredible tools for keeping your customers on the edge of their collective seats to see who wins.
The type of competition or prizes awarded isn’t nearly as important as casting a wide net among your audience for interest. In other words, the prizes do need to be meaningful enough that a large section of your audience is on board to participate. When this happens, they’ll spread the word for you.
You don’t have to offer daily prizes or even monthly contests to win customer loyalty. But hosting different contests throughout the year can make a significant difference to your customer engagement, participation, and, ultimately, sales.
Create a Loyalty Club with Special Offers
Customer loyalty programs are another great way to increase engagement. They are great tools for creating repeat business by offering freebies and discounts. For instance, old-fashioned punch cards can be great for food services. Every ten punches on the card result in a free sandwich, coffee, dessert, etc. People will come in day after day, as long as you provide good service and products so that they can get the free product down the road. It’s a small price to pay to encourage customer loyalty. One that is often well rewarded with loyal paying customers who frequent your business regularly.
Ask for Their Opinions
Surveys are incredible tools you can use to get feedback and opinions from your customers. Surveys are cost-effective tools you can use to ask a wide range of questions and solicit commentary from your customers.
Participation can also be fun for customers. It gives them a voice in future products your company creates, the level of customer service you offer, and how you interact with them regularly.
Thank Them for Their Patronage
Finally, don’t forget to thank your customers. While telling them “thank you!” is terrific, there are more meaningful ways to thank them that will stay with them much longer while increasing engagement at the same time. One way is with handwritten thank-you cards and notes.
This is an underrated method of building customer engagement that often flies under the radar in our highly technological society. However, it is a method that can generate fantastic results when it comes to loyalty and engagement from your customers. Handwritten letters and handwritten notes make your customers feel appreciated and wanted.
We live in a world where so much communication is handled by email that it stands out and makes an impression when you send an actual handwritten letter by mail.
The Key Is To Get Started
The more your business uses these methods to improve customer engagement, the better the results are likely to be for your business. However, it’s up to you to implement them. If you run a business, ensure that your customer engagement efforts are a daily and ongoing part of your operations.
Don’t wait until you have a significant problem to start talking to your customers. Don’t forget that it is vital for any business owner or entrepreneur to know how valuable their customers are.
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