Engaging Your Customers

Customer Engagement When it comes to selling merchandise to customers, we tend to focus on only one thing: selling our wares. This is obviously important, since it is only through selling inventory to customers that we are able to make a profit and stay in business. However, there is one very important aspect of salesmanship that can be overlooked, and that is the role of the customer in the sale.

Copywriting to Improve your Conversion Rate

copywriting for conversion While a picture may be worth a thousand words, a website without any words is likely to be ineffective. Even with an appealing graphic design and strategic layout, you’re unlikely to have a high conversion rate without text. In fact, text is actually the most important feature of your website; after all, it’s the text that is the key to attracting browsers in the first place.

Be Accessible to your Customers with Social Media

Customer Engagement Social media efforts have mushroomed over the last couple of years among both small and large businesses.

Successful campaigns all have one primary goal in common: accessibility.

Marketing with social media is about relationships, so in order to create a social media campaign that will create and maintain customer loyalty, you must be accessible. Here are some key focal points to include in your social media strategy.

Keep the Conversation Going with Social Media

Marketing with social media isn’t like marketing with print or radio or television.

It isn’t like advertising on a billboard or in a community events calendar. It’s not even like holding a press conference.

Why? All of these advertising efforts involve one-way communication, with you broadcasting to the consumer. Social media marketing changes the game by creating a two-way marketing conversation.

To be successful with social media marketing, you must recognize the shift in marketing strategy necessitated by a two-way conversation.

Marketing with social media is no longer about shouting out messages and crafting invincible brand images. Instead, it’s about interaction. Here’s how to get started.

Are You Engaging Your Customers with Social Media?

Using Social Media to Engage with your CustomersEach year the percentage of companies using social media as a means of engaging with customers increases.

If you don’t have a Facebook and Twitter account for your business, it’s time to jump on the bandwagon or be left in the dust.

More important than simply opening social media accounts, however, is understanding how customer engagement with social media has permanently altered the way businesses interact with customers.

How Social Media Changed Customer’s Attitudes Towards Business

Unlike phone and email services which were used widely by businesses before finding their way into individual homes, social media got its start at the grass roots level and embedded itself firmly in the habits and expectations of consumers long before big business realized how it could benefit from social media marketing.

For this reason, customers, not businesses, were the ones to define the rules and shape the understanding of how social media could and should be used. Customer engagement with social media is on the terms of the individual, not on the terms of large companies, meaning that you have to play by the rules if you want to succeed.

The rules include listening to customer opinions, taking them seriously, and responding quickly and meaningfully to feedback. As more and more of your customers expect to be treated this way, they’ll be less and less tolerant of failures on the part of businesses to live up to customer service expectations.

How Business Operations Must Change

Because customers can freely and immediately share information about products and services, businesses can no longer hide problem areas. Instead, they must be ready to immediately address customer concerns.

Failure to do so will result in overnight disaster. (Just ask Domino’s.) As you increase customer engagement with social media, recognize that you must commit to long-term involvement with customers as well as to company transparency in order to win loyalty and build consumer trust.

How Businesses Can Benefit from Social Media

It might be a little frightening to think about all your customers knowing instantly about company warts and defects. But instead of panicking and trying to mask problems, try involving your customers in seeking a solution.

If customers know that you’re aware of the problem, that you’re seeking to fix it, and that you’re willing to listen to their concerns and suggestions, they’ll be much more forgiving of mishaps than they would be if you tried to hide errors.

Customer engagement with social media can be a daunting prospect to companies that are used to addressing problems internally before customers see them. But by using the benefits of social media to your best advantage, you’ll end up not only with a stronger business model, but also with more loyal customers.

How are you using social media to engage with your customers?

Are You Inviting People to Contact You?

Make Your Contact Us Page More Engaging for Visitors One of the things we always ask every small business owner we deal with is, do you want your potential customers to contact you, and we’ve never yet had anyone say no.  Many respond with “why do you ask?”  And our response is always the same – from the customer’s perspective it doesn’t look like you want them to contact you.

Social Media for Small Business Owners

Social Media Marketing StrategyBuilding a social media marketing strategy may sound intimidating if you’re a small business with limited personnel and time.

But the benefits far outweigh the challenges and social media can be a great way to get ahead of your competitors.

Social media for small businesses doesn’t have to consume all your time if you’re careful in your approach and you don’t jump in too quickly.

Traditional Marketing is from Mars, Social Media is from Venus

Social Media vs. Traditional Marketing Men and women communicate differently. It’s an age-old problem, one that has provided the inspiration for thousands of jokes, books, magazine articles, and “I can’t believe he said that!” stories.

An entire marketing niche has built up around the attempt to help men and women understand one another, but when it comes down to it, the only way to solve the problem is to set aside pre-conceived ideas and spend time learning about one another’s differences.

In a sense, traditional marketing and social media run into some of the same roadblocks. Traditional marketing tends toward male characteristics such as concrete thinking, direct communication and problem solving.

Social media, on the other hand, lends itself to female traits like listening, sharing viewpoints, and interaction. Surviving in this new marketing climate will require understanding social media and learning to redefine traditional marketing concepts.

Customer Retention: Once You've Got Them Don't Screw it Up

I recently made a reservation at one of the largest hotel chains in the world.  Since I contemplated staying there again, I joined their Rewards Program . . . so far, so good.

Along with their Welcome message, they sent me an offer, as a Rewards Program member, to save my room preferences for future check-ins.  All I had to do was select my preferences from 6 small pull-down menus.