09
Mar

The Advancements of Customer Engagement

The information age has changed a lot about the way we do things. Companies are marketing products differently, consumers are shopping for those solutions differently, and customer engagement has become more important than ever.

Not only does increased engagement help build stronger relationships with your customer, it can also help lower your support costs, provide a steady stream of data about your market for product strategy decisions, and give you consistent access to a wide range of customer advocates. And that’s just the beginning of what customer engagement can deliver for your company.

According to a recent report, most executives look at metrics like clicks, conversions, shares and traffic as prime indicators – but these metrics can’t really measure engagement per se and nor can they measure a customer’s satisfaction with the service they have received.

Customers’ expectations for their online experiences with a company are constantly evolving – shaped by the rise of social networks and other consumer digital experiences.

Key findings about social media

  • 82 percent use Facebook to speak with a customer service representative.
  • Two thirds of consumers use Facebook to find good deals and promotions, including 80 percent of Baby Boomers.
  • More men (34 percent) than women (25 percent) use Twitter to speak to a brand they have purchased a product from.
  • 75 percent of Millennials find it helpful when other customers/followers respond to a question or comment posted on a brand’s social media channel.

 

When you have the social proof that comes with an army of educated and engaged customers across your industry, investors, prospects, media, and legislators will find you much more credible and take your message (impact on the market) seriously.

When customers are kept engaged, you can increase the lifetime value of each customer by extending the duration of the relationship as well as capitalizing on new sales opportunities with existing customers. If they have a problem that they are trying to solve, you will likely be the uncontested first company they reach out to in order to see if you have a solution.

Retaining customers is one of the biggest windfalls of engagement. By some accounts, it costs companies 5X more to acquire new customers as it does keep existing ones. By engaging your customers, you are building a first line of defense when competitors unleash a new product or make their way past the gatekeeper into a meeting with your customers.

Engaged customers share eye-opening information about how your products, complimentary products, and alternatives are being used. They’ll also tell you about how they want to use your product or service in the future.

When your customers are engaged, they feel heard. This gives your organization an opportunity to treat them as partners rather than transactions. They will be more patient when it comes to product updates, issue resolution, and the occasional missed deadline.

It’s evident from the graphic that customers are now available and open to receiving information than ever before. But for the uninitiated company, this doesn’t mean simply throw out all the advertising you can at them. People are tired of being marketed to and instead, want to share their experiences with friends on social media and rave about the latest deals or what fantastic service they got. Today, consumers want less noise and more tailored offers, personalized to their tastes.

In customer service, a lot of effort goes into explaining (and looking for ways to create) “memorable moments”. These are moments where the customer shopping experience was so good/timely/affordable that they can’t help but remember it.

Imagine for a moment if expectations were low, but experience was high. A customer might remember that moment, and conversely, if expectations were high and experience low – a customer will definitely remember it – and likely tell others.

Being able to accurately pinpoint where (on the map) the customer interacts with the company and how to make these points as even as possible is what every company should be aiming for.

Making them feel things in connection to shopping online (the excitement of receiving a package containing their desired product) greatly heightens their satisfaction and in effect, doing business with you.

It’s vital when considering customer experiences as a whole that you look at the areas where improvements can always be made – such as:

  • Appealing, interesting content
  • How easy it is to find information
  • How to get help when they need it
  • How their personal data is being collected and used

 

Do you feel like your company could improve on customer engagement? Or have you already made great strides and are looking to do more? If so, contact our team of specialists today, for a free consultation.