For businesses, customer engagement should be the focus of every marketing initiative. Whether it’s a simple billboard or a highly-targeted Facebook advertisement, the goal is to engage with customers and build a relationship that results in a sale or conversion. Regardless of your product/service quality, brand name, or brand logo, you will still need specialized tools to help facilitate customer engagement. And while there are hundreds – even thousands – of different options available, two currently stand above the rest.
Blog Your Way to Customers’ Hearts
Are you on the outside looking in when it comes to blogging? It’s not too late to invest in this valuable form of customer engagement. In fact, there has never been a better time than now. Here are two reasons why:
- Perfect launching point. Ask a business what their “home base” is on the internet and most will tell you their blog. It’s one of the only things you can control on the constantly changing internet. While search engine algorithms and social media layouts may change from month to month, how your blog evolves is up to you.
- Shows credibility. Think about any credible business or corporation and then search the internet for their blog. You’ll find one – guaranteed. If you don’t have a blog, what does that say about your business? By launching a blog and using it as valuable platform for disseminating content, you can prove to customers that you’re credible.
Communication in 160 Characters or Less
While the value of blogging is pretty well publicized, most people don’t realize that text messaging – or SMS – is an option. Not only is it an option, but it may be your best opportunity for engagement this year.
As customers are trending way from PCs and desktop computers and towards mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, it’s becoming clear that the future of internet marketing will take place on these devices. While most businesses are flocking towards mobile apps and responsive web design, there may be something much simpler, yet equally effective: SMS or text messaging.
When you first about SMS marketing, it may seem like a step back. Don’t confuse simplicity with a lack of effectiveness, however. Companies like Starbucks, Redbox, Walmart, and many airlines actively use SMS as a form of customer engagement, but why? There are three primary reasons:
- Easy opt-in. Think about how easy it is to sign up for a text alert or SMS service. Usually the company tells you to text a string of characters to a four or five digit number. You get a message back asking you to confirm your signup and you’re all set. When you want to stop receiving messages, you send a text such as “Stop” or “No.”
- Low commitment. In addition to being easy to opt in and out of, SMS has virtually no commitment. You don’t have to download an application, create a username, or learn how to navigate a website; it’s simple and painless.
- Convenience factor. The third major benefit of SMS is the easy opportunity to upsell. After a customer makes a purchase, the company can offer a coupon code for another item or provide a link to a website with similar products. The customer doesn’t have to carry around a physical coupon or remember a code; everything is seamlessly integrated on the mobile device.
Get Engaged This Year
If you aren’t currently using blogging or SMS to engage with customers, now is the time to start. Both of these channels present wonderful opportunities and can help you take your business to the next level.