Social media is a vast place. Facebook alone has nearly 2.5 billion monthly users. Every marketer worth their salt knows that it’s a resource that absolutely must be taken advantage of.
The question is, how should you utilize the incredible potential that social media presents to your business? How can you choose social platforms and produce content that will genuinely encourage readers to engage with your brand?
How to improve customer engagement
It doesn’t matter if you’re a local small business owner or the chief marketing officer (CMO) of Amazon, here are five of the most important tenets you should keep in mind when deciding how to use social media to improve your customer engagement.
1. Foster brand awareness and trust
In a study regarding brand communities on Facebook, it was discovered that there was a direct correlation between higher levels of involvement in a brand community on the social platform and increased customer engagement. The research suggested that a positive relationship may exist between customer involvement and both trust and word-of-mouth activities.
In other words, by fostering an engaged and active community of followers on social media, you open yourself up to reap the benefits of greater trust in your brand. On top of that, you increase the possibility of organic word-of-mouth marketing spurred by the positive experiences that social media followers have had while interacting with your brand on social media.
This positive correlation reinforces the fact that social media, when used correctly, can have a tremendously powerful impact on how your brand is perceived. It can encourage users to interact with your social profiles with confidence.
2. Set goals and track them
Regardless of the platform, the audience, the content, or the strategy, you should always set goals when using social media. The sheer diversity of options can make it easy to lose track of your investments if you’re not careful. A few goals to consider include:
- Increase brand awareness.
- Build a community for your audience.
- Drive traffic to your website.
- Generate leads.
- Provide customer service.
There are multiple ways to track each of these goals. You can certainly set up your own unique objectives that pertain to your particular interests. The important thing is that you set goals. Then track them to ensure your social media efforts are genuinely generating engagement over time.
3. Provide real customer service
Customer service shouldn’t just consist of offering an email address and a promise that “you’ll respond as soon as you can.” It should be an intimate, attentive action that genuinely demonstrates your concern for the welfare of your customers. When approached in this manner, customer service can literally transform into a branch of your marketing efforts. It serves as a testimony to how you conduct your business.
With so much on the line, you may want to use your social media as a form of personalized, quality customer service. To clarify, this doesn’t necessarily mean you should hash out customer complaints directly on your Facebook wall where everyone can see the nitty-gritty details. It’s still important to provide a sense of confidentiality as you break down issues with individual customers. Fortunately, you can always integrate a live chat feature into your social media efforts. This will provide quick, direct, and private communication for your customers.
4. Seek out influencers
Influencers are individuals with a loyal audience on social media. There are influencers in every industry and niche with various followings that can number anywhere from a few thousand up into the millions. Some influencers are international and others are regional or even local. As a business, you can seek out influencers within your niche. You can offer to work with them or pay for their services.
When you’re endorsed by an influencer, it helps to establish your enterprise as an authority that provides knowledge and solutions within your industry. Having the mark of approval from an influencer (or many influencers) also helps to spread brand awareness. It instantly boosts your credibility, all of which will organically increase your customers’ engagement.
5. Research and adapt
Finally, always strive to have a growth mindset throughout all of your social media dealings. In other words, you should perpetually look for ways to continually be learning. Then, adapt your social media strategy to whatever works best at the moment.
One of the primary ways that you can do this is through social listening. The activity involves monitoring your brand’s social media channels in order to gather feedback. Discover times you are mentioned or tagged. Study industry-specific topics, keywords, and competitors.
Social listening enables you to collect information that can help to inform your strategy. It keeps it fresh and effective over time. It helps you to remain aware of what social media content and behaviors actually encourage engagement. You can discover what efforts fail to provide results. It also opens the doors to data-driven creativity. This means you can use your collected and analyzed data to inspire new, innovative ways to market using your social media channels.
Use social media to improve customer engagement
As a company, it’s difficult to ignore the potential of social media. However, if you want to truly profit from it, you must take the time to harness that potential and direct it towards profitable results. A truly effective social media strategy consists of setting goals, building your brand, providing customer service, teaming up with influencers, and maintaining a growth mindset. If you can master these principles, you can tap into the benefits that social media offers. Ultimately, it will help you boost your bottom line.
This guest blog article was written by Noah Rue, a freelance writer who is fascinated with the world of search engine optimization, marketing, and social media.