Fine Tuning Customer Conversations on Social Media

We’ve been in the go to market space for over 15 years and have seen countless enterprise projects who fail to adequately engage and interact with their customers online, especially in the last 5 years over social media.

Guide to Fine Tuning Customer Conversation on Social Media

Here are some tips that will help you master the customer conversation and build a loyal following to your business or brand:

1. Learn about your Audience

The key to success for any business in the industry is understanding their target audience using social media. With the help of tools like Facebook Insights in Hootsuite, it is possible to determine the age and gender of the social media audience, in addition to a number of other insights. Business can cater campaigns and product offers to their target audience using this knowledge, ultimately leading to a higher return on investment.

US Adult Facebook User Graph

Most businesses focus too much on trying to get social media followers to buy from them, use insights to learn what they will like and apply the data to improve conversations with them online, in email and for social conversations.

Related: 
Reaching Consumers Through Social Media Conversations

2. Listen to Feedback

Social media allows the customers to provide feedback – positive or negative – giving the business valuable insight on how customers perceive the business and its offerings. Customers on social media will be more than happy to provide their opinion through posts and direct messages about what they like or dislike. For instance, many companies launch new products on social media to gauge how well it is received by their audience. One can also glean insights from conversation on how customers’ needs are evolving with regards to their offerings, allowing them to cater to their products and services better to customers’ tastes, preferences, and needs. New product ideas can also stem from this insight and optimised campaigns can be sent out to followers to improve reactions and comments.

3. Increase in Web Traffic and Search Ranking

One of the most important benefits of using social media for a business is the increase in web traffic. It helps direct people to the business’s website. Moreover, the higher the number of shares of a business’ posts on social media, the greater its search ranking and online exposure. Use keywords in your post title and subheadings for good results in search media optimisation. Use the data from Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools to understand what specific search terms were used to discover your product and service, and then educate sales people on these hidden opportunities to increase customer conversion rate to buy from your business.

4. Increasing Brand Awareness

Companies have managed to increase brand awareness with the help of social media with minimal or no budget. Traditional methods of advertising were associated with higher cost of brand awareness strategies. Marketing departments across countries are hiring community managers now in an attempt to increase brand awareness and reach through social media. These community managers foster relationships with the online audience scattered in different locations by developing conversations and engagement with your followers. Brand managers develop one to one interactions via chat, direct messages, email or social with the potential customer. The intimate relationship can be fine tuned by growing the follower base and looking at which demographic segment is growing the fastest, and then fine tuning a message that appeals to this audience.

5. Viral Content

Social media has made sharing content easier and faster. Companies now use social media for content curation or sharing content about their business in particular. All they do is share their brand on their social network accounts. However, companies should keep in mind that if they want customers to share your content with their followers, they need to ensure that their social media content is aligned to the brand and captures the attention of the audience.

6. Get Ahead of Your Competitor

Social media help businesses gain valuable information about their competitors, improving your market intelligence. This information will allow companies to stay ahead of their competitors by making strategic business decisions. For instance, through HubSpot and Hootsuite, businesses can create search streams to monitor their competitors. Based on the results your business can craft a more focused conversation for potential customers or offer a new product which the competitors are missing, thus improving business sales opportunities.

What are the Importance of Customer Trust and Ways to Maintain It?

Whether your business has just been launched or has been successfully working for a while, long term success is highly dependable on customer’s trust. The increase or decrease of customer’s trust on your business can have a major impact on the profit and loss of your company. This is the reason why it is important to build the trust of your customers and maintain it.  

Here are some effective ways of building and maintaining the Customer Trust

1. Enhancing the Purchasing Process

The best way to make your customers happy is to make the purchasing process as easy and smooth as possible. When the customer buys a product from you and faces no issues throughout the process, from placing the order to having it delivered at their home, then he/she is bound to return. The happier the customer is with the entire purchasing process, the higher the chances of them trusting you with their future orders as well because they have started trusting you based on their initial smooth purchasing experience.  

enhancing purchasing process infographic

Image Source: customersthatstick

According to our experience, 85% customers say if they receive an outstanding customer service then they are willing to pay more for the products.

2. Communicating with Customers

The best way to maintain the trust of your customers is to communicate with them on regular basis. To do so, interaction through social media is your best bet. Whether the customer wants to know about your products or services or leave a feedback on your social media page, always reply promptly. Aside from this, post regular updates about your company and your products so that customers stay updated. All the posts, comments, and messages must be done in a friendly, welcoming, and professional manner. If your response is impolite, rude, or in any way unwelcoming, you are bound to lose the trust and even the respect of potential customers. Ensure that the tone is warm, friendly, and helpful so that the potential customers start trusting you and the trust of your existing customer base is maintained.

Related: 
What are the Best Strategies to Ace Customer Engagement?

3. Improving Customer Services

Customer services offered by your business must be strong. When a customer calls with a problem or an issue, the top priority must be to enhance the customer’s satisfaction and experience. It is essential to make the customer feel important. Ensure that all your customer care employees are trained to warmly welcome the customers, help them out in any way possible; making sure that the customer is satisfied in the end. Another important thing is to get their feedback and also check back to ensure that the problem has really been resolved. Ask them to rate the service they had just received as this will make them feel their opinion and feedback is valuable to your company.

improving customer service infographic

Image Source: zendesk

First impressions really do last forever. According to a survey, 24% of customers continue to seek services from the same vendor for two or more years if they had a great first experience with them while 39% customers avoid seeking services from vendors after a bad first experience.

4. Never Promise What Can’t Be Delivered

This is one of the most common mistakes many businesses make. Many sales professionals feel it is wrong to say no to a customer for anything, which is why they assure them that they will receive their product/solve their problem in a specific timeframe, when in reality, it isn’t possible to meet that deadline. It is of utmost importance that you don’t lie, exaggerate, or make false promises to your customers – it is a sure-fire way of losing trust and ruining your company’s credibility.  

There are numerous ways of enhancing your sales but it is important to make sure that adapting those ways doesn’t lose the trust of your customers in your business. Coming up with more ways to building more trust in your customers and working hard to maintain it is the most effective way you can lead your company towards success.

Why is Mobile Marketing Essential for Business?

Successful businesses around the world have started relying on mobile marketing for extending their reach to the increasingly growing market segment of mobile phone users. In today’s world, the importance of technology can’t be denied and business owners can’t afford to miss out on these advancements.

Mobile marketing can assist you in fulfilling most of your business goals which include customer services, customer data collection, product enhancement, increasing sales and more. Majority of businesses have developed their own mobile apps for enhanced mobile marketing experiences.

Here are some reasons why it is essential for your business to venture into mobile marketing:

1. Enhanced Brand Image

A strong brand image is significant for the success of your business. By opting for mobile marketing or developing a mobile app, you will be able to show your customers what your brand is about and how it is in line with the latest trends. This will in turn brighten up the future prospects of your business.

2. To Attain Immediate Response

Through mobile marketing, you get an immediate response. Smart phone users are constantly using their phones, so when they receive a message on their device, they are going to check it immediately. In comparison, an email can sit in a customer’s inbox for weeks before it is read.

3. Message Delivery and Product Purchase Anytime and Anywhere

With mobile marketing you can deliver a message to your customers, wherever they are and whenever you want. You can inform them about the latest products or services, new deals, discounts and more. This will be instantly viewed by your target audience. Not only this, but your customers will also be able to buy your products or services whenever they want. This is way faster than advertising or marketing through print media, TV or radio. As a matter of fact, there are more purchases through mobile marketing as compared to any other form of marketing.

mobile marketing woman shopping outdoor on mobile phone

According to a survey, $8.4 million worth of purchases were made on mobile devices in 2012. Since then there has been a drastic increase in purchases made in response to mobile marketing, especially through mobile apps. In total about $37 billion worth of purchases are expected from mobile marketing by 2016 and about $1 trillion by the end of 2017.

4. Personalised Customer Management

Mobile marketing allows personalised customer management. You can receive immediate feedback from your customers and interact with them to ensure that they are happy with the products and services. You can do regular surveys and offer discounts and promotional deals to your customers through mobile marketing which can further enhance customer engagement.

Related: 
6 of the Best Strategies to Ace Customer Engagement

5. Countless Earning Potential at Low Costs

An effective mobile marketing strategy will enable you to target a larger audience, build highly marketable products or services and attract and maintain a loyal customer following. The best thing about mobile marketing is that it is cost effective so you have the opportunity to earn more profit.

It is a fact that the percentage of smart phone users will continue to increase in the coming years. Mobile marketing is the future of marketing, so it is wise to opt for it now and build a strong following for your business as it will position you for greater revenues and increased opportunities in the future.  

Strategies to Build Stronger and Lasting B2B Relationships

Many B2B organisations operate with the perception that selling their services or products at the lowest possible rates will make them successful. This approach may very well bring them success for a while, but once a competitor comes up with a better price or a better product, then the company becomes vulnerable and its products replaceable. Focusing on the price along will always be an unsuccessful and unnecessary strategy in the long run. A better and more successful approach is improving and nurturing their B2B relationships. B2B organisations have more chances of becoming successful if they are able to maintain strong business relationships.

Successful Strategies to Enhance Business to Business Relations

There are numerous strategies that your company can employ to improve and enhance their relationships. Some of them are discussed below:

1. Understand Clients’ Personalities

The most essential strategy for stronger relationships is to actually assess and understand the personality of your clients. This will assist you and your employees to communicate with them in a better way, whether it is face-to-face communication, email, phone, or any other form of communication. It will help you in developing a message that your client can relate to and understand in a better way. The most effective ways of understanding your clients and customers is through the social media.

b2b client personalities understanding infographic

As per our experience, 83% of B2B marketers believe that social media is essential for business and 58% have reported that social media has improved their sales. This means that through better communications with the clients and customers, processes and strategies can be improved and hence sales can increase.

Related:
6 Questions You Should Ask Before Executing Your B2B Campaign

2. Analysis of Sales Cycle

It is always a good strategy to understand the sales cycle of your clients so that you are aware of what is going on in their business. Do they need a simple solution to enhance their success or do they need to work on an entirely different approach? Are there any additional ways you can assist them?

3. Provide Effective Solutions

The right message at the right time can do wonders for your business relations. If you understand your business relations and the needs of their business, then you can effectively offer solutions for their existing problems as well as come up with effective strategies for problems they might face in the future.

4. Knowledge About Business Issues

When you are aware about the market trends and the potential problems your clients and customers can face, your company will be able to assist them properly. It is extremely easy to stay updated in today’s technological era. You can simply research latest company reports, look up the trends and latest happenings in an industry, search about the latest products, what they offer and how they can challenge your own or your client’s services and products. With the most recent information at hand, you will be better equipped to help your clients, leading to increased trust and confidence, enhancing business relationships as a result.

No matter which sector your business belongs to or which products or services it sells, if the relationship with the customers, clients, and other business associates are strong, then your company will attain success. When partnerships and business is done on genuine advice instead of price, it gives a mutual benefit to all the parties which improves B2B relationships and helps in maintaining them. Low prices can be offered by any company but it’s merely a short term quick fix, while strengthening business relationships is a sustainable and long term strategy.

What is CRM and How it Benefits your Business?

What is CRM or Customer Relationship Management?

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) allows your business to enhance your service and sales operations by sharing vital information throughout your company.

CRM is a beneficial system that focuses on enhancing relationships with current customers, attracting potential customers, and retaining existing customers. This software also enables you to collect, organise, and manage the information of the customers.

As per our experience, CRM can assist in retaining customers by 27% and helps in decreasing the marketing and sales cost by 23%. This indicates how much your business can benefit from CRM.

CRM data analysis

Image source: Trackvia

Below are the benefits of Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

1. Better Customer Relations

One of the major advantages of utilising CRM in your business is that you obtain better customer relations. Through CRM, all the dealings including selling, marketing, and servicing your products to your customers can be done in a systematic and organised manner. You will be able to understand their problems and issues in a better way and provide appropriate solutions. This will help in enhancing the loyalty of your customers and decreasing the agitation of customers. You will also be able to attain regular feedback from your customers on your services and products.  

2. Enhancing Customer Revenues

Through utilising an effective CRM strategy, your business will experience a boost in its revenue. By collecting data with the help of CRM, you will be able to create marketing campaigns effectively. The CRM software will help you in reaching out to new and different set of customers. This will help in attracting customers and enhancing your customer revenue. According to a survey, CRM can increase revenue by 41% per sales person.

3. Maximising Cross Selling and Up Selling

Another benefit of a CRM system is that it enables up-selling, allowing you to provide customers premium products which come under similar categories as that of their purchase. It also allows cross selling through which you can offer complementary products or services to your customers as per their previous purchases. This can be achieved by engaging customers and determining their purchase patterns, their needs and wants. All the details are then stored in the central database which can be accessed by all authorised employees. When the right opportunity arises, your sales employees or executives can promote the service or product, thus maximising cross selling and up selling.

Related: 
6 of the Best Strategies to Ace Customer Engagement

4. Improved Internal Communication

CRM also results in enhanced communication within the organisation. Sharing of customers’ details between different departments will enable the employees and departments to work together as a team and move towards a single goal. As a result, this will increase the profitability of your company and improved service to your customers.

5. Optimised Marketing

Another benefit of CRM is that it will help you in determining the behaviour and needs of your customers, hence enabling you to come up with the right time to market your services and products. It will also provide you with details and ideas regarding most profitable customer base, and through that information, you will be able to target such groups. This will help you in optimising your marketing resources most effectively.

These are the top reasons why CRM is rapidly becoming essential to businesses of all sizes. As there is a continuous increase in the expectations of customers, businesses must start adopting new strategies and services like CRM to enhance customer support, increase sales and success of the business.

The Art and Science of Customer Engagement

It’s a no-brainer that we no longer interact with customers the same way we did face-to-face in brick and mortar. With customers increasingly using social media, apps and websites to shop and browse, they are being empowered with more information and more choice. With so much choice available to the customer, it really boils down to the quality of their customer experience with the company that ultimately wins a customer and gains their loyalty. For any company that wants to increase their conversion rates and retain their customers (which company doesn’t, really), you need to excel at customer engagement.

Learn how to manage your Customer Engagement. Sign Up for  FREE Conversation Technology demo today!

What is Customer Engagement?

Customer engagement is, in its simplest form, the interaction between a company and their customers. But it should not be mixed up with Customer Service. Customer Service is an interaction with a customer as a result of the customer reaching out to the company.  Customer engagement on the other hand, is an interaction between the company and customer where both parties are actively reaching out to each other. On social media, this takes form of companies posting engaging content such as quotes and discounts to delight their followers, as well as responding and reacting to customers who reach out to them.

I’ll break this down with an example:

A customer has a problem with a company’s product. He takes a picture and posts this on the company’s Facebook.

Scenario 1: The company sees this issue and replies with a solution to the customer. End of interaction. This is customer service.

Related:
What are the Best Strategies to Ace Customer Engagement

Scenario 2: The company replies to this customer publicly with a solution; and privately messages him asking for his email address in order to send him a small token of appreciation for letting them know. This time, the customer posts up his satisfaction with how the company has handled the issue. In response, the company reply favourably to his post and reshares it to encourage other customers to also contact them about issues, because they are actively listening to their customers. This, is customer engagement.

How to do Customer Engagement right?

So, customer engagement is a little more work than your traditional customer service. It might be a real pain, but with such widespread use of the internet, that is the level of customer experience you need to provide to attract, retain and engage customers to develop them into promoters. Whilst there are countless ways to engage with your customers, there are three crucial points you need to address in every customer engagement strategy.

1. Be Omnipresent

customer engagement-customer service - omnipresent

Being omnipresent means that you’re everywhere at the same time. Meaning, you should be on social media, email, phone, chatbot and whatever other communication channel your company uses, all at the same time, around the clock. Customers expect a company to have presence on at least 3 to 4 social channels, as well as fast response times across all these channels. 32% of people who contact a company for customer support on social media expects a reply within 30 minutes. 42% expect a response within 60 minutes. Crazy right! If you’re anything like me, you’re a bit of a sloth replying to your friends on social media. Just imagine if you had hundreds messaging you every day expecting instant replies.

zootopia slow sloth-customer engagement - timeliness - customer service

Some ways companies are overcoming this hurdle is by outsourcing customer service, using social media management platforms, or just start slow by using social listening tools. Customers want to have their voice heard on a channel they use, and very importantly, want to know that you value their time.

2. Provide seamless omnichannel experiences

customer engagement - omnichannel - customer service - cmo - customer support

Omnichannel experiences mean blending the touchpoints a company has with its customers to provide a wholesome, integrated experience. Not only will this improve customer satisfaction, but the reduction of customer effort has been proven to be a huge contributor to customer loyalty.

Disney and Tomorrowland are amongst the top in providing an omnichannel experience to their customers. Customers start from mobile optimised websites, to online itinerary planning, to a mobile app that can be used to find locations at the venue. They have made it easier for customers to transition from platform to platform and from online to offline, making these entertainment giants some of the most successful in the world.

3. Be Personal

Nothing better than having human touch, really. In a Genesys Global Survey, 40% of 9000 consumers say better human service mattered to them the most in customer support, much more than other options such as integration of more channels and enriched content.

customer engagement - human touch - customer service - cmo - customer support - personalization

Being personal goes beyond using their name when interacting with them or showing a picture of your face on the chatbot screen; it also encompasses being responsive to their emotions and knowing their history with the company. The end goal is for the customer to develop feelings of personal connection to a company or brand. Once they are in this comfortable stage, it’s much more likely they will end up becoming evangelists of the company.

A fantastic example of online personalization is Hubspot’s smart content. Smart content intelligently personalizes content to the user’s need. Using information such as their job title, average page views or stage in the buying process, smart content changes the content the user sees on the website. A regular visitor would for example, see different call-to-actions or forms compared to a new user. The result? Personalized content did 42% better.

Hubspot smart content - customer engagement - customer service - personalization

Whilst there is no one right way to do customer engagement, being omnipresent, omnichannel and personalized (even to some degree) has reaped many benefits for all companies that have implemented it. What are you doing in your business to engage with your customers? Share with us in the comments below!