There is lots of competition for your business out there, looking to tempt your loyal customers or clients away, but if you make some changes when it comes to connecting with this important audience, you can hold onto them.
So what can you do to ensure you connect more effectively with your customers? Check out these top ten tried and tested ways of tapping in and building up those important relationships:
1. Go mobile
It’s not breaking news that nearly everyone owns a smartphone these days but you would be surprised at how few businesses take advantage of this fact and still don’t even offer a responsive website. Forget email, personalised SMS marketing messages are the way forward. Check out a site such as globalmessaging.co.uk and choose a package which allows you to send out mass messages to people signed up to your marketing, from as little as 2.4p per message.
Facebook is a great way to build up brand awareness and connect with customers personally. You can use a Facebook page to explain your product using videos or images, make people aware if the site is down for work, deal with any customer complaints in a personal way and see or hear about people using your product or service and their response. You can also use Facebook to create competitions, which brings us on to our next point…
People love free stuff, so if you use your Facebook page to set up a competition or giveaway with a product or service as the prize, then people will quickly get on board. The best competitions are ones that help build your brand awareness too, whereby people enter by sharing an image or your page on their profile and write a response to a question in the comment box.
4. Interesting content
Your company must appear to know what it’s talking about for whatever industry it specialises in – but you should know anyway really – so create blog posts that get people talking (and sharing) and try to get these spotted and shared by leading newspaper sites or websites such as Buzzfeed or the Huffington Post.
5. Live events
If you offer marketing services or have your own factory producing your products then invite existing customers (and potential ones) in for a tour or a free seminar about what you specialise in. You could gain some more leads from such an event, as well as learn first hand about the people who essentially pay your wages. Take a look at these tips on how to organise a successful business event.
6. Monitor review sites
Review sites are more commonly used when a customer is considering buying a product or visiting somewhere. If you own a restaurant or bar check Tripadvisor regularly to see what people are saying and encourage visiting customers to share their thoughts. If you are offering high quality products and good service you should have nothing to fear and will in turn see more people visiting as they read those good write-ups about you.
Twitter is a great way to engage with customers, hear what they think personally about your business and answer any queries directly. It’s also a good way to keep your followers updated and share news immediately and directly. You can also use it to keep an eye on what competitors are up to.
Much like review sites, surveys work well when it comes to engaging customers and seeking out their opinion of your business.
Quickly climbing the social media ladder of best sites to use to engage with customers, is Instagram. It’s a great place to market your brand and products because it offers only the simple visual element.
Used mostly by bloggers, experts in 2013 predicted that this past year would see the rise of the predominantly mobile-based app and these predictions were correct. Now with 300 million active monthly users, Instagram is the perfect marketing tool for your business and yet another way to connect with your buying audience.
So in the New Year, why not give at least one of these tactics you might not have considered before a go and watch as your customer base continues to grow?