We have heard it all before, but we’ll say it again: your customers are your business’s lifeblood. Without them, your business wouldn’t thrive, and there’s a big chance that it won’t even survive. It’s as simple as that. The truth of the matter is that if you don’t make your customers happy, it won’t take long for your business to flounder. But the opposite is true as well – if you make them happy, then you can very well be reaping the rewards of success before you know it. The key to making your customers happy is to engage with them, and it’s not just about coming up with the perfect sales pitch. If you understand what it takes to engage your customers, you can have happy customers who will come back again and again. But what makes a good strategy for engagement? Here are the top three engagement strategies you can employ for better customer loyalty.
1. Invest in a deeper, more emotional bond and connection
Building a stronger emotional bond and connection with your customers takes a bit of effort, but you can start by letting them know that you are real. You are not just a company per se – show your customers that they are dealing with a real person instead of just a faceless organisation. You can show your business’s human side, first and foremost, by introducing yourself. Send out a direct message or an email if you have a new follower on Twitter, or welcome a new customer to your online forum with a personalised message.
Another distinct way to show your human side is to use authentic images of your team members on social media and include authors’ bios in your company blog, as recommended by the experts in customer experience and engagement from TheLoyaltyWorks.co.uk. If you want, you can go further and choose a brand ambassador, and it need not be a celebrity, either. It can be someone from your team that can serve as your organisation’s face – much like how Steve Jobs served as the face of Apple.
2. Establish an online community
There is no denying that people are spending more time online these days, and you can take advantage of this shift by establishing an online community. Forums and communities online have been around for years, and they’re not about to go away anytime soon. One singular benefit to such is that you can engage with your customers directly as you answer their questions, have discussions, and keep them updated with the goings-on in your business. You can encourage them to share info with your brand and with each other as well. More social media channels are also giving businesses the chance to create a community, be it Facebook, Linkedin, and Google, so you can take advantage of this, too.
3. Get them going with a competition or contest
Good old fashioned contests and competitions still create a lot of buzz, and they are a brilliant way to engage with your customers. Everyone likes getting something for free, after all, and you should take advantage of this and have a contest or competition. Contests and competitions not only allow you to get attention – but they also help you engage your customers because you are giving them rewards. You can, for instance, host a photo-tagging competition where your customers can tag as many contacts as they want so they can win a prize, a year’s free membership, and so on.