Does it sound extreme and harsh? Well, the reality is harsh! Did the prediction seem unreal to you? Let’s look at the current business landscape. Everything your customer needs is just a click away.
The e-commerce marketplaces are so crowded that your customer has many options. One can say that it is an overload of options. So why should your potential buyer invest in you emotionally? Also, are you paying them back for their loyalty? Your customers are always ‘on.’ They can interact with you on social media, marketplace, and apps. But it means that they can be easily distracted. Just as they are about to buy your brand, they may get a fun social media notification.
Would they remember to come back to you? Consumer goods brands understand the importance of brand consciousness and customer engagement. But in the digital era, no sector can ignore customer engagement.
Some sectors think customer engagement is a waste of time. Here is why they are wrong:
What do we say is the essence of any relationship? Communication! Customer engagement is, in a way, an ongoing interaction. You can’t retain customers if you do not even interact with them! Also, brands that do not have a customer engagement program will not relate to their buyers. Aligning the buyer’s needs and the business imperative is essential. When the goals are aligned, customer engagement adds to sales and revenue.
Vikas Jain, the founder of ACVISS Technologies, believes that every sector needs a dedicated customer engagement program. ACVISS technologies offer customized solutions for brand protection and customer engagement. Vikas says, “Customer engagement has been around for a while. But the strategy has changed. Catchy slogans and taglines are no longer enough. Brands that feel customer engagement is not for them do not understand what it means today.”
Is customer engagement more important for some brands and optional for others?
Vikas disagrees. While the strategy for a customer engagement program changes, the importance does not. He says, “It is a common misconception amongst industrial manufacturing or electrical segments. Most believe that customer engagement is for fashion or FMCG sectors. In the past, electrical or electronic sectors dealt only with vendors. But today, the end-users research all aspects of a product before purchasing. Besides, customer engagement for such brands is also about creating a great user experience.”
Today business has shifted from product orientation to customer orientation. Mapping the customer journey and customer persona has become a popular marketing strategy. As the company expands, brands need to connect with their customers. Your customers need to know that despite your growing market share, they are not just a number. Customer engagement is a tool to keep your loyal buyers close.
What do you get in return? Benefits of customer engagement:
- Key insights: Customer engagement helps brands in understanding the requirements and challenges faced by multiple key stakeholders.
- Targeted marketing through customer research: Target marketing is important for sectors with a niche audience.
- Online engagement: As you enter the online market, customer engagement is important for digital marketing. If your item is a one-time purchase, your customer will research it before buying. The decision-making is complex. As the products get more expensive, customer engagement gives brands a competitive edge.
- Feedback and improvisation: Customer engagement opens channels for feedback. Brands can use the input to increase operational efficiency.
- Small customer base: In the case of B2B marketing, your customers are more valuable because they are a smaller group.
Are you engaging with your customer at all? Here are some tips for a top-notch engagement program:
Don’t just offer support. Personalize the support
Apathy, delays in redressals can be off-putting. Customers spend a lot of time finalizing the purchase. If they have chosen your brand, then they trust you to help them. Addressing queries on a real-time basis can improve your engagement scores. Does your website allow a live chat? Can your customers report counterfeits with ease? Using technology to make returns and replacements easy is essential for all brands.
When did you last publish a use case? Do you have a social media presence?
Sharing information is important to customer engagement. Sharing user manuals and best practices establishes your brand’s reputation. Customers feel like you are creating value. The more your customers learn something engaging, the happier they will be with you.
Network and community give customers a sense of exclusivity
Today you can leverage technology to bring your customers on a single platform. While blockchain, IoT, and Machine Learning help beyond supply chain management. Technology enables information sharing. It gives your product a story. Customers can relate to your brand values when you share those values with them. Brands can use technology and social media to build customers’ trust. Winning your customer’s trust is necessary across sectors.
Customers should be treated as individuals with a persona. When it comes to treating your customers right, the sector does not matter.