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Everyone knows that in order for a business to succeed, it has to make its customers happy. But some companies take this to another level. Their customers seem like members of an exclusive club, bragging about their products and refusing to abandon the brand. Take Apple customers for example. Many have a fierce sense of brand loyalty, and the mere idea of giving up their iPhone for any other kind of smartphone is repulsive to them.
How do companies create this kind of brand loyalty? Obviously, the quality of their products and their marketing strategy play a role. But another big part of building brand loyalty is customer engagement. Customer engagement covers a range of customer interactions with a company. It can be both positive and negative, online and offline, and help or hurt your business’s growth. But if you can promote the right kind of customer engagement with your business, you can earn loyal customers that will repeat purchases and recommend your brand to everyone they know.
What Is Customer Engagement?
Customer engagement is basically any interaction between a customer and your business. In some cases, customers might be the ones initiating the interaction. They might call customer service for help with a product, or make a complaint on a third-party review website. Depending on your business model, it might be necessary for customers to engage with your business somewhat in order to make a purchase. Even doctors and hospitals can use apps and messages to improve patient engagement.
Here are a few examples of ways customers can interact with your business, both in positive and negative ways:
- Loyalty programs. These add incentives for a customer to return to your establishment instead of choosing a competitor. If your loyalty program sends them emails and notifications, they might engage with your business even when they’re not buying something because they want to stay on top of the latest rewards.
- Reviews. When customers leave reviews, they can express their opinion about their business with others and talk about their experience, whether it was positive or negative. Some businesses allow customers to leave reviews on their own websites, while others only get reviews from third-party sites.
- Social media. Online platforms allow your business to interact with its customers. They can see new products and sales, while also adding to the conversation by suggesting the products they’d like to see.
- Direct contact. Customers might directly contact your business to make a complaint, solve a problem, or ask a question. They might call customer service, send an email, or talk to a sales rep in a store.
There’s a broad spectrum of customer engagement. However, just because your customers are engaging with your company doesn’t mean that these interactions inherently have value. Instead of leaving customer engagement up to chance, you should promote meaningful customer engagement. That means that you have to take the initiative to engage with customers, not the other way around.
How To Improve Customer Engagement
If you want to boost your customer engagement and build brand loyalty with your customers, you have to initiate the interaction and create a brand that people want to engage with. Here are a few things you can do to improve your customer engagement:
1. Hone In On Your Brand Identity.
People like brands that have a strong voice and clear identity. Even before the logo appears, they know what company is behind the ad, video, or post. If you want to attract engagement, figure out what makes your company unique and what kind of personality and identity you want to convey with your marketing campaigns and social media presence. To do this, take a look at what people like about your company, Then use that to create a strong identity that resonates with your target customers.
2. Make Your Engagement Human.
To improve customer engagement, you have to focus on building a genuine connection with your customers. Robotic-sounding ad campaigns and bland social media posts just don’t cut it. Your company needs to have a human element and promote an emotional connection if you want people to feel loyalty towards it. To accomplish this, you need to understand your customers and what they care about. You also need to make sure that your customer service is stellar. When people feel like a company cares about them individually, they’re more likely to be loyal customers.
3. Ask For Your Customer’s Opinion.
If you want customers to engage with your business, ask them to! Let them leave reviews on your website, use polls on your social media to find out what they want to see more of, and send out surveys to ask them about their experience. Unhappy customers will often find a way to express their opinion, whether you ask for it or not. But give all of your customers a chance to engage with your brand and share what they like and don’t like. This information can help you immensely to make decisions for your business.
It’s clear that customer engagement is important if you want to build brand loyalty. Use the suggestions above to improve your company’s customer engagement and get more repeat customers.
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