Are Your Customers Forgetting About You?
Ways to Increase Engagement
When a lot of business owners think about customer engagement, they dwell on strategies that encourage people to buy what they’re selling. That’s far from the whole story when it comes to creating a loyal fan base that raves about your company. Customer engagement should be a constant initiative, not something that only happens when customers are thinking about buying. Engaged customers won’t forget about you. When the time to buy comes around, yours will be the first name on their lips. Engagement also drives word-of-mouth marketing. According to a recent Nielsen study, consumers rely on referrals from trusted sources more than any other form of marketing. If you give your current customers a reason to rave, they’ll spread the word. Here are a couple of ways to ensure that your customers become fans. BE PERSONAL Treat your customers like a number, and they’ll think of you the same way. Treat them like real people, and they’ll love you forever. Remember details about your customers, address them by name, and go the extra mile to develop a real bond. Mindy Grossman, CEO of Weight Watchers, says, “Our ability to create that one-on- one engagement with a customer is a point of differentiation and strategic advantage for us.” No matter your industry, you can create that advantage for your business.
MAKE PROACTIVE CONTACT If you only engage with customers when they are looking to buy, you’re a pricing company. Once a customer is shopping around, they already know what they want. They’re just looking for the best deal. Conversely, if you reach out to your customers to follow up, provide them with information, or even just share something fun, you’ll build brand loyalty. CREATE A COMMUNITY Speaking to your customers is great, but giving them a way to speak to each other can be just as valuable. Savvy use of social media is a great way to achieve this goal. Give people a reason to share their experience with your business and a forum in which to share it. Even better, incentivize. Offer customers discounts on future purchases for posting about their experience on Facebook. The more creative you are, the more engagement you’ll see. Engaged customers are loyal customers. But it’s up to you to engage them. Don’t fall into the trap of focusing only on customers who will buy in the next 30 days.
“That’s one of the Seven Deadly Sins: pride. And it took my good friend and co-host, Dave Tester, to really break that down for me. Dave is one of the first outside influencers that I have ever allowed inside my inner circle, and let me tell you, I am so much better.
“Having someone who is not in my industry with an outsider’s perspective and who holds me accountable for what I’m trying to accomplish is second to none.” —Chris Spates
“You can’t go it alone. Up until about three or four years ago, I said, ‘I can do it myself. I don’t need anyone. I’m not going to open up to anyone, and I’m not going to share with anyone. I can do it myself.’
Stop the Madness in March Smart Recruiting and Customer Follow-Up This spring, our focus is on recruitment and follow-up. We offer a wide variety of services, from customer intelligence reporting to public relations training, but the zone of genius this month centers on two crucial concepts: the importance of successful recruiting and how to follow up with current customers and leads. When recruiting superstars, always ask yourself, “What does my bench look like?” In other words, who do you currently have on your team, and which weak areas do you need to recruit strong candidates for? You should always be recruiting. We will soon begin providing DISC testing, an assessment that helps you discover what drives and motivates your candidate. The average cost of a failed hire is 1 1/2 times his or her salary.
As for follow-up, our research shows that 96 percent of customers who have a bad experience will not tell you, and 9 out of 10 of those will not come back. We have also discovered that most companies fail to follow up on 8 out of 10 leads — sales teams stop after the first rejection or voicemail. Let us help you beat the odds. Those figures make us want to stop the madness in March. Reach out to us this month for your free assessment: askdavetester.com.
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