6 Simple Steps For Engaging Your Customers Online


To make sales online you have to engage your customers by speaking to their pain points and giving them accessible and relevant solutions to make their life easier. In traditional real worldsales, you do this in conversation face-to-face or over the phone.

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In digital inbound marketing, you do the same via your blog posts, marketing emails, social media engagements, and real-time conversations. In both cases the principles of sales engagement are similar, even though the medium through which the sales are made is different.

In this article, we explain six simple steps for better engaging your customers online.

1) Listen to customers on social media

Social media is a useful feedback system that lets you listen to and engage with your customers in real-time. Everything you share on social media is open to feedback and comments. Listen to what people have to say. Some comments will be positive. Some will be negative. Everything gives you a chance to demonstrate your professionalism and commitment to customer service. For a potential customer, it can be important to see how you deal with complaints and frustration from your existing customers. And dont just monitor your own content, listen to your competitors as well. What are their customers and prospects saying about the company? What do they like and not like? Monitoring social media feedback provides important learning points and ideas for new content.

2) Start a group on LinkedIn

One of the things we like most about LinkedIn is all the active groups for different industry sectors and sub-sectors. These are fun to get involved with and provide an excellent networking opportunity for building relationships with future customers, as well as potential employees, suppliers, and outsourced partners. If you are new to LinkedIn, start by getting involved with an established group, but you may find it worthwhile to set up a new group for your own niche, too. This gives you a chance to promote your brand both directly, through sharing content, and indirectly, by cultivating group collaboration and being seen to give backto your industry.

3) Be interested in your customers

Prospects are quickly turned off by businesses that try to make the conversation all about themselves. While its important to put across the benefits of your products and services, it is equally essential to make your proposition relevant to the individual needs and motivations of your target audience. Demonstrate that you are interested in your buyers as people by asking questions, and then listening to the answers.

There are numerous ways to do this with online marketing. In blog content, for instance, you can set people at ease by adopting an informal and conversational tone in your articles, so that your writing mimics a conversation or face-to-face presentation. With emails and social media chat threads, it never hurts to ask how the person is, or how his or her day is going. If you know the persons birthday, you can also send them a short Happy Birthdayemail with some gated content as a present.

These incidental details, not directly related to the sales enquiry, nevertheless build a personal rapport that helps deepen a relationship of trust and relevance between yourself and your customers.

4) Dont forget your existing customers!

A classic marketing mistake businesses make time and again is to save all their cookies for new customers, taking the loyalty of their existing customers for granted. A customer loyalty programme will redress this balance, encouraging loyalty and promoting referrals. The programme can include personalised discounts, one to ones, free webinars, exclusive deals, content etc. If you advertise these benefits on social media, then prospects will see publicly how you look after your current customers, helping improve engagement with new customers, too.

5) Use video content!

Video content restores the human face that is so often missing from online marketing. Its hard to overemphasise the importance that video plays in digital marketing, post-pandemic. With a range of excellent cheap or free content creation tools now available, video marketing is within the reach of all small businesses, working with any budget. To boost engagement, try hosting a live Q&A session or webinar on Facebook Live, or stream live from your next tradeshow, or entice your email prospects with a free four-part video course. Video content is extremely mobile friendly and lets you reach people who dont have the inclination or time to spend on written material.

6) Actively request feedback

You dont simply have to wait for social media comments to respond to feedback, you can actively request it, too. Use your email subscriber database to solicit opinions from your prospects and customers. This shows that you care about them and gives you a vital repository of information to support and enrich your buyer persona profiles. Dont bombard your subscribers with requests and questions, but its fine to send them the occasional survey and opinion in exchange for Xmessage to boost engagement.

Better online relationships and more online sales

There are many ways in which you can personalise your communications and target your online content for better results and more meaningful engagement with your prospects. To find out more, please call one of our inbound marketing specialists today on 01332 343281.

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