One of the biggest challenges that businesses face today is declining customer engagement.
Competition is continuously increasing in nearly every industry, giving customers more and more options to choose from.
You need to engage customers if you want to stand a chance.
In this article, we take a look at what you can do to increase your engagement and establish customer loyalty.
We’ll answer the following questions and explain how you can boost your customer engagement:
Engaging with customers is a crucial part of building a loyal customer base and establishing brand awareness. The more you positively engage with customers, the more they’re going to support your business.
Think about your favorite brand or company.
What makes them stand out?
Most likely it’s how they engage and treat you as a customer.
Sure, it could be that you like them because they have the best quality product or service. But how else would you have found out about their product or service? What if they never engaged in a meaningful way with you?
Engaging customers is a balancing act. You want to expand your customer outreach without losing authenticity.
So what are some ways that you can improve your customer engagement?
You can start by evaluating what channels you’re using to reach your customers.
Email, voice calls, and social media are just a few ways to engage with customers. New customer engagement platforms are always emerging, so it’s important to choose where you engage wisely.
To have the furthest reach with your customer base you want to be on as many platforms as possible. Right?
Overextending yourself and phoning in social media posts is never a good idea. Content that doesn’t make sense or resonate with your audience isn’t just boring. It makes you and your brand look inauthentic.
The key is to focus on the customer engagement platforms that make the most sense to your customers and business. You only want to create engagement channels that you have sufficient time and resources to maintain. This gives your company the best chance at authenticity and true engagement.
Are you texting your customers?
If not, here are two reasons you should be:
On average 98% of texts get opened within 1 minute of being received. Emails, on the other hand, get around 30% open rates.
And businesses in many segments and categories realize this.
That’s why 39% of businesses and organizations have already begun implementing text messaging into their communication strategy.
The majority of customers also don’t like getting calls from businesses. Our research shows that 76% of consumers don’t like talking to businesses on the phone.
On the other hand, more than 8 out of 10 consumers want to be able to send texts to and receive texts from businesses.
Nothing is more annoying than getting dragged through a series of impersonal and unhelpful voice prompts.
While nothing is quite as personal as a one-on-one voice conversation, that’s not always scalable.
Luckily, you don’t have to make autoresponders and automated response workflows dull and lifeless just to increase customer engagement.
Take time to humanize your automation and give customers a clear path to success.
Things like autoresponders should ultimately create an improved experience for your customers and contacts.
Customers get exposed to an overabundance of information each day from businesses.
If the communication you present to your customers isn’t relevant to their needs, they'll have no problem disregarding it. In order to make your message resonate, you need to present applicable information to the right groups of customers.
Filtering customers into groups is a great way to ensure that you achieve relevance. The goal is to reach members of specific groups with information that appeals to them.
Also, it goes without saying, but your communication should always be honest and professional.
Lying to customers or exaggerating the truth can lead to distrust in your business. You don’t want to promise customers that you’ll respond within a day, and then take five. Unsubstantiated claims make your communication irrelevant.
Help, help, ask is a strategy that prioritizes helping the customer. It requires that you help a customer at least twice before you ask them to do something.
Who would you be more inclined to help? A friend who just gave you a ride when your car broke down? Or a friend who hasn’t responded to your calls in weeks?
This same sentiment is true in business contexts.
Providing value to customers before asking them to buy your product or service strengthens their emotional connection to your company. Customers feel indebted and want to give back.
Whether your company is involved in B2B or B2C sales, it all boils down to H2H.
Human to Human
This means treating people as people, rather than profit opportunities.
It’s critical to show empathy and care while communicating. Remember that the customer on the other end of the line feels emotionally in the same way that you do.
When it comes to communication channels, use what you’re good at.
Forcing new channels can end up being detrimental to your company. This is especially true if the platform you’re using doesn’t align with your actual customer journey or marketing strategy.
One way to know when to adopt a new channel is when your customers start to ask for it. Having an audience waiting will give you a headstart in establishing your channel.
Some currently trending channels that are worth exploring include podcasts, webinars, live chat apps, and short-form videos.
Organizing customer data and lead contact details begins with maintaining a good spreadsheet.
You want to collect enough data points on customers that you can easily categorize them. Having categories allows you to send more relevant information to different groups of your contacts. More relevant content leads to higher engagement.
But as helpful as data is, it's important not to go overboard with it. Only collect the data that actually matters to you. Having too much data will only cause confusion.
Developing a style guide or blueprint document that explains how your employees should interact with customers is essential.
Consistency is key when it comes to large-scale communication. You want to develop a template for how your brand communicates. This should be flexible enough that you can tweak it slightly to meet the tone you need across different platforms.
An effective communication strategy should be diversified across multiple forms of media.
Customers have unique preferences in how they want to consume media. They may prefer to watch videos, read text, or listen to podcasts.
Why not please everyone?
We’ve already established that replying to consumers in a timely and sincere manner is critical. But how do you accomplish this?
A critical step to set yourself up for success is to have a single point of contact that funnels inward communication. This allows you to keep messages organized and central.
Check out MessageDesk to start organizing your text messages.
Tools can make your life easier, but in some cases, they can be a bit costly.
So how do you know when a tool is worth the money?
If you answered yes to these questions, then you’ll most likely find value in the tool.
Getting serious about improving your customer engagement? You’re going to want to explore a business text messaging platform like MessageDesk.
MessageDesk offers all of the functionalities you need to manage customer relationships including gathering customer feedback and ensuring customer retention.
MessageDesk includes texting tools that allow your business to start engaging with customers in more meaningful ways.
These tools include:
Autoresponders automatically text your contacts back when they text your MessageDesk number with a keyword. This saves time and allows you to efficiently reach a large number of people.
Customizable templates give you an easy way to personalize your automated messages. Making templates allows you to effortlessly scale messages you want to send to numerous contacts.
Broadcasts allow you to manage, create, and send texts to groups of your contacts. Broadcasts are a great way to send mass texts without reply-all.
Groups allow you to add existing contacts manually or automatically to specific groups. Groups make it easy to filter contacts based on specific criteria, that will make your messaging outreach painless.
The contacts module gives you a central location to store all of your contacts. You can upload your spreadsheet of contacts and add contacts manually.
Overall, texting can be a great addition to your current engagement strategy. It can benefit your business even if you want to keep an email and calling marketing campaign.
Utilizing text messaging gives customers a quick, convenient way to reach your business. It allows you to improve your overall engagement strategy.
Ready to start texting? MessageDesk is here to help with smarter, simpler ways to send text messages.
Visit our learning center for information on how to get started with MessageDesk. You’ll find a quick start guide to texting, a features overview, and an explanation of what MessageDesk is.
You’ll also want to check out our list of free SMS text message templates. Just copy and paste to start texting.