Staying connected with customers in an increasingly digital and physically distant world is critical, but not without significant challenges.
You may be an online-only business, which shapes how you interact with customers in general. You might also be experiencing difficulties connecting with customers or barriers to doing so because of the ongoing ramifications of the pandemic.
The following are some modernized ways you can stay connected with customers, regardless of the situation.
Get to Know Your Customers’ Needs and Preferences
There are more ways than ever before to stay connected with customers, but with all the available options, you may not know the preferred method of connecting with your customers. The best thing you can do is ask them.
Send out surveys or ask for feedback as far as how your customers would like to receive communications from you and what they’d like that communication to center around.
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Be Accessible and Respond ASAP
Customers expect the brands they spend their money with are going to be highly accessible to them. They also expect responsiveness.
If nothing else, when customers reach out to you by email or on social media, have an automated reply set up, so they know that their question or comment has been received. From there, you should aim to have every inquiry responded to within 24 hours, at a maximum.
The faster you can respond to everything, the better. According to the Harvard Business Review, the chance to qualify a need lead goes down by nearly 400% if you wait longer than five minutes to contact them after they reach out.
New technologies like live chat and messaging offer opportunities for even small businesses to be accessible and highly responsive.
Additionally, you can’t just be available when your customers are happy, and things are going smoothly. You need to be available in the tough times too, and when your customers have an issue.
Use Email Marketing Strategically
Email marketing is a great way to build and nurture relationships with customers, but only when you’re doing it well.
You want to send emails that your subscribers actually want to read. That means that you’re not making any hard sales in your emails.
You’re providing value through information. That’s what drives a sense of connection that your customers feel with your brand.
Understand the reasons why people are most likely to unsubscribe. The top reasons often cited include that they get too many emails from the business, the content isn’t relevant, or the content isn’t what they expected. “Another important thing is to pay attention to the security of your email domain and when you receive a dmarc policy is not enabled note, quickly fix it by modifying your policy mechanism
Be Personal Instead of Transactional
You need to be personal with your customers to grow your relationships. Don’t be an aggressive salesperson. No one likes this.
Be conversational and provide answers and information when a customer asks for them.
Have An Active Social Media Presence
Think about times when maybe you’ve been looking for a particular product, service, or business. You very likely went to social media to check out or vet your options.
Your customers are doing the same, so to connect with them, you need to be active on the platforms where they’re most likely to be spending time.
If you’ve got a business social media page and there’s no activity or there doesn’t seem to be responsiveness from the brand, it’s not going to leave you with a good overall image.
You need to be engaged as far as creating content and generally having a social presence, but you also need to be highly responsive on these platforms.
Throughout the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, brands that were transparent with their customers tended to do best.
You don’t want to try and gloss over an issue or crisis you might be facing. To connect with customers, keep them in the loop as much as you can, and remember that while your customer experience doesn’t stop during difficult times, it should evolve.
You always want to be real along with conveying transparency, but at the same time, be positive. You don’t want to be overly pessimistic.
Finally, don’t overlook the value of regular blogs to keep up your connection with your customers. Blogs are great for a lot of reasons. You can create a conversation through your content, but it can also help increase your brand visibility if you optimize for Google.
Blogs are a good way to answer questions that you might frequently hear from customers, and they create the perception that you’re an authority in your industry. Plus, the content can continue to serve audiences rather than being a one-off.