Engaging your customers across all channels is a requirement these days to keeping your customers happy, and customer digital engagement starts within your organization. Let your customers tell you what they need, and do what you can to meet them in the middle while still reaching your business requirements. Giving your customers multiple ways to be engaged with your digital footprint is the best way to reach all your customers, no matter what persona they fill.
Social Customer Service
We all know that customers like to feel heard. If you have an unhappy customer, you have a perfect opportunity to help address their concern directly by responding to their concern on social media. A lot of this started with Twitter complaints (Comcast was one of the first large companies to dedicate a team to Twitter Customer Service), Yelp, and Google Reviews.
These are some of the first places you can look for unhappy customers, and some of the first places you can directly and publicly address it. Responding to complaints on social media helps demonstrate that your company cares about the customer’s experience, and taking the time to show the initiative to right wrongs only adds value to your digital engagement.
Short Satisfaction Surveys
There’s no better way to engage customers than by asking them what they want. Ask for direct feedback by sending out a small survey. This doesn’t have to be invasive – you can add a completely passive one-question survey to your website that no one has to answer except willing volunteers. Passively collecting information like this lets your customers feel heard, which can help to strengthen their bond with your brand by building trust.
Online tools like Qualaroo and Hotjar let you add a customized survey that pops up on your website when you want and shown to only the customers who you want to see it. This survey can be as simple as “How are we doing?” with a 1-5 scale rating. You can even add a comment box to get a quick expression of feedback. Based on that feedback, you can tailor your next question later on to get additional insights on changes you made based on customer feedback.
Just remember that long surveys or invasive popups are a disaster when it comes to making your customers happy. Asking one question at a time, and being able to tailor that question as you go, is going to give you a direction to follow when it comes to improvements. You don’t need to ask 20 questions to figure out what your customers need!
Tangible & Meaningful Appreciation
Though this isn’t always the cheapest way, a fun way to really put a smile on your customer’s faces is to send them actual items in the mail, or donate something on their behalf. In exchange for product reviews, testimonials, social media posts about your company, or participating in a longer survey, you can reward your customers with free things like gift cards, raffle entries, branded items, donations to a charity of their choosing, or anything else you can imagine. Giving out meaningful gifts helps your company stand out with a unique gesture. In today’s customizable world, do your best to personalize these gifts to suit your customer’s lifestyle. No matter what way you share your appreciation, know that interacting with them outside the typical digital channels provides a much more memorable experience that your customers will talk about.
Webinars aren’t just for stakeholder meetings anymore. If you have a new product coming to the market, share an exclusive pre-release webinar party. Though not all types of companies release new products or services, those that do can take advantage of releasing information
For those that don’t release products and services, you can still host a webinar. Your topic can be around your company’s values, culture, ideals, or just something you think you do really well, in an informational style webinar. You can even have an open Q&A session afterwards to really engage customers and answer their questions completely.
Blogging is a well-established way to interact with your customers. Customers engage with certain companies based on having similar values, and having their needs filled. If you have the means to maintain a steady stream of blog posts or articles, you give your customers more reason to come back to your website to see where your thought leadership stands. This can build trust and respect with your customers, as well as prove your thought leadership on relevant matters to your business.
Blogging isn’t a new thing, and it has been “rebranded” in a few different ways, so you have the option of naming this feature whatever you want. Whether you call these blog posts, articles, or news may help you get around the stigma of blogs seeming informal. As long as you are consistent and thoughtful with your posts, you will attract your customers.
The key to keeping your customers engaged is to do little things to enhance their day, show that their opinions are valued, and give them a variety of opportunities to interact with your company. And most importantly, if they reach out to you, give them what they need.