As the owner of a small business, getting new business is one of your immediate objectives. However, holding on to customers you already have, and encouraging loyalty is also crucial.
By creating a strong community of customers who are loyal to your small business will strengthen your chances of success as a business overall. In addition, the stronger the relationships formed through customer engagement, the more likely they are to recommend your business to others.
Building customer engagement is about forming solid relationships. The emails, phone calls, and Instagram stories all revolve around this concept. To increase interactions across these channels, you must create a well-thought customer engagement strategy for your small business.
Ask yourself, do I know who your ideal customer is? What are my target audience’s interests? Do customers reach out to my business after buying an item? The more you streamline communications between your team and your customers, the better the engagement.
Increased customer engagement provides stability for your small business, and helps you to map your future growth. As customer engagement and retention is one of the key factors in the success of a business, finding ways to improve it is crucial.
Here are some time-tested tips and strategies to take your small business’s customer engagement to the next level.
1. Leverage the Power of Social Media
Businesses are aware of the enormous potential for exposure platforms like Facebook and Instagram have. This is why they’re more active on social media than on their websites.
One great way of increasing engagement on social media is to launch a tag a friend campaign. For instance, many small businesses celebrate the 10,000 follower’s milestone on Instagram with a tag-a-friend giveaway. This is how you can also incorporate it in your engagement strategy:
- Post an excellent-looking picture showcasing your achievement.
- Write a small caption thanking your followers for their loyalty and ask them to tag their friends for a surprise reward.
- Announce a random winner in a follow-up post.
- This way, you’ll make one customer very lucky and also get more publicity.
2.Use Resources to Set Up Multichannel Engagement
When you establish a reputation of being responsive and ever-present, your customers feel valued.
As a small business it can be hard to maintain your levels of responsiveness across all platforms. These days brands build their online presence across multiple social media sites. However, managing all of these and continuing to boost engagement is a difficult task.
Even though you might have limited resources as a small business, you have to build the capacity to interact across various platforms. This is possible with the right communication tools and resources.
Finding a platform that allows you to monitor customer communications and engagement will help you to keep track and reply quicker. There are many programs available that allow you to monitor your customer’s exchanges on social media, email, phone calls, and even text in some cases. Investing in a platform like these can make a world of difference in streamlining communications and increasing responsiveness.
To gauge your progress, keep an eye on crucial customer satisfaction indicators, such as CSATs. This can give you a clear idea of where you stand as a customer-oriented business.
3. Reward Engagement
There are many ways to do this, including in built reward systems in your business such as spend and save initiatives or discounts on birthdays. Many businesses send out emails after a customer has made a purchase with a once off discount code to increase cases of repeat customers.
A great way to include this concept into your social media campaigns is to encourage comments or shares of your posts with the incentive for a voucher at random.
Be creative and find ways you can implement rewards for your customers when they engage with your channels.
It’s a great idea to plan and have small engagement rewards prepared to implement. This way, you can move in quickly when an opportunity to engage shows up.
4. Capitalize on Feedback
Being receptive to customer feedback can make or break your small business.
Especially on public platforms, a negative review can be stressful. However, avoiding it or responding in private won’t help the situation. Your other followers will see the exchange, so ensure you remain professional and helpful to project a positive brand image.
The key takeaway from this is to think of feedback as opportunities, even if they’re negative.
A great way to do this is through survey results. Compose an email showing the results and mention three or four changes you’re going to make based on the feedback. Once you’ve implemented the changes, let customers who took time out to take the surveyknow that you’ve listened and taken action.
5. Keep your promises
As a small or big business, keeping your promises is integral to excellent customer service. Customers stay engaged with your brand when they trust your word. When you renege on promises, bad publicity follows.
Many high-level companies are guilty of making half-hearted promises. This can affect brand image as it disappoints customers by not fulfilling expectations.
It would help if you also tailored your promises to meet your customer’s needs and preferences. Here are some tips to help you build realistic and actionable promotional brand promises:
- Keep your brand promises short and sweet. It should inspire confidence and trust in your audience. If your promise is long and unclear, it might overwhelm and confuse your readers.
- Focus on your audience. What are their likes and dislikes? What features would they like improved in a service or product? Do they have any special requests? These questions will help you narrow down a brand promise that hits the promotional bull’s-eye.
As a small business, you might have a limited budget and staffing, but you can still make your customer’s appreciated and involved.
Customer engagement is about studying your audience and making sure their voices are heard. For this, the best way is a multi-pronged approach across various platforms. To accomplish this, you can turn to newer technologies on the market designed to enhance engagement.
Increasing customer engagement is a great way to strengthen your brand image and boost the success of your business.
As your small business continues to grow, you will enter periods where you need to readjust your plans for the future direction of and approach to your business. For example, you may take on a joint business owner, sell some portion of your business, pass on ownership to a family member, or plan for eventual succession.
In any of these situations you will be required to get an expert business valuation to fulfill legal or tax requirements, and ensure the correct process is undertaken during the period of change. The valuation will provide you with an accurate market value of your business, as well as information on its standing within the industry.
This will help you make informed decisions regarding the future of your business.
Article Submitted By Community Writer