Customers are the base of your business. Without them, your business would not exist. Customers truly are the lifeblood of any company, but it takes work to grow and maintain your customer base. Doing this means following a simple rule: don’t just reach out to your customers when you want their money. Only asking for money makes the customer feel like you don’t care about them personally. Connecting with your customers on a deeper level is good for your business and this guide will walk you through the steps it takes to do so. With this guide you will be able to connect to customers and grow your customer base.
Make it Personal
When reaching out to customers, don’t use a one-size-fits-all approach. Each customer wants to feel special and appreciated. Grouping all your customers together will only pass along the message that you don’t really care. Instead, break your customers down into smaller groups. New customers will be different from older customers. Firmographic data will greatly inform how your customers behave. Be sure to collect this data either through customer submitted surveys or Google Analytics.
While online sales are the way of the future, there are still many sales conducted face to face. Sure, email and chat are convenient, but there can be miscommunication issues. Talking to a customer face-to-face lets you better understand them. People are more likely to trust people in real life vs online. According to SAS, “face-to-face interactions will remain the most important customer engagement channel.” This is also the lasting appeal of brick and mortar stores as they only operate in the face-to-face sphere.
Another rule to adhere to is to keep it personal, not transactional. No one wants to be constantly pitched or sold something— people want true interactions. Instead of being aggressive in your sales pitch, be more consultative and conversational.
Customer reviews are generally good honest opinions that a business should listen to and are a form of customer engagement. If a customer is writing a review it is because they want people to see it, to inform not just other customers but the company as well. Value these reviews, as they act as a report card for your company.
If you are receiving rave reviews, you know what you are doing is working. Be sure to take the time to thank customers for their kind words as it shows you care about what customers have to say. However, if your reviews are less than stellar, find out why. Use bad reviews as a learning opportunity. Reach out to users who leave bad reviews and try to rectify the situation. Offer a gift or some other condolence to turn a hater into a happy customer. Going above and beyond for a customer will only yield positive results.
Encourage Customers to Create Content
Marketing content is getting longer and more expensive to make in-house. Fortunately, we have a solution for this problem. Many businesses are getting customers to make content for them. You can interview customers, use their pictures of your products, have them write blog posts, or feature them in a promotional video. Be sure to communicate with your customers to ensure they approve of you using their content. Once you have their consent, use this content to your advantage. Customers trust other customers, so using customer-created content is another way to gain trust. If a customer sees another engaging with a brand, the first customer is more likely to join in.
When you are trying to get customers to create content, go where the customers already are. If your audience is mainly focused on Reddit, host a content contest. Have fans submit their own designs or pictures for a contest. This way, you get customer engagement and free marketing.
Customer engagement is key to any business. Without customers interacting with a brand, the brand will slowly die off. Keep your customers engaged by making it personal and talking to them as humans and not solely customers. Look at customer reviews, take them seriously, and use them as a guideline for ways to improve. Utilize customer created content to bring in new customers and keep your current ones active. Hopefully, this guide has helped you find new creative ways to grow your customer base.