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Engagement Marketing: 4 Ways to Make Stronger Connections with Your Customers
What’s the one thing you missed most during the social distancing phase of the COVID-19 pandemic? If your answer is engagement with others, you’re not alone. Many of us missed that sense of connectedness that comes with being able to gather with friends and loved ones, and we made do by finding some semblance of engagement online through social media platforms and live digital events.
This struggle highlighted an important truth that applies to both life in general and business marketing specifically—engagement matters. Connectedness counts for something, and businesses that are able to use this truth to build better relationships with their audiences and customers are more successful in the long run.
This is the heart of engagement marketing—using well-crafted content to build relationships with followers and customers and invite them to interact with your brand in a personal and meaningful way.
Sounds heady, doesn’t it? And perhaps a bit overwhelming as you try to envision exactly how to go about creating something so powerful. Not to worry because we’ve created a list with our top 4 tips on how to cultivate this somewhat mercurial but utterly connective relationship with your customers that will drive brand loyalty through the roof.
1. Know your audience…like, really know them
There’s a reason this is our number one tip—the time and money you’re funneling into your marketing will be for naught if you don’t first take the time to identify exactly who it is that makes up your audience.
Your target audience is a true treasure. They are that unique group to which your brand appeals or for whom your products meet a need. When you take the time to analyse this group, you’ll likely see several common denominators like location, age, gender, interests, or economic status.
One of the easiest and most effective ways to identify your audience is by analysing current customers and followers through the use of a survey. The good people over at Survey Monkey have a wonderful tutorial on how to go about setting up a survey to identify target markets. It’s definitely worth the read.
2. Think about your goals
What good do you want to come from engaging with your audience? Do you want to drive more traffic to your website or online store? Are you interested in having more people opt-in to your monthly newsletter? Are increased sales your goal?
Understanding your goals will help you create content that drives your audience to perform in a way that best serves your business.
3. Create good…like, really good…content
Posting a blog every week for the sake of getting content out there and with no regard for those who are reading it will do you no good…and is likely a waste of your efforts and marketing dollars.
Take the time to create really good content that is going to pique the interest of your audience. But don’t let the task overwhelm you. Quality content doesn’t mean you must generate an entirely new topic no one in your industry has ever written about…but it does mean addressing industry topics in an original way.
So, get creative. Let your unique voice shine through in the content you create. This is a great time to add a bit of personality through personal stories about your experience in your industry. These tales are unique to you and ensure the content you create will be more appealing to readers.
4. Build connection through conversation
It’s not enough to send out quality content into the ether and hope for the best. Nearly as important as the quality of what you’re creating is the connection you create with those who read your content and respond.
We’ve said it before, but it certainly bears repeating—if you are one of the last few holdouts on joining social media, you are missing out and your business is suffering because of it. Each time you post a blog on your website you should be sharing your content on the platform of your choice, then engaging with those who respond. Once again, creativity is your friend so try to mix things up. Instead of simply throwing up a link to your latest blog, try asking a leading question to increase engagement. For example, if yours is a wood-fired pizza restaurant and you’ve written a blog about a new pie variety you’ll be offering, you might share the link to your latest blog like this:
Pineapple on pizza…yea or nay?
Leave a comment with your vote and be sure to click the link to read our latest blog with the announcement of the surprising flavor combo found on our newest pizza!
You won’t believe how quickly simple questions like this can rack up likes and comments while driving your audience straight to your website.
When executed correctly, engagement marketing does more than increase awareness of your business. It builds brand trust and loyalty and turns casual customers into lifelong supporters of your company, and you cannot underestimate the value of such a powerful connection.
Thanks for reading,
Digital Canteen Team