It is no exaggeration to say that online marketing is a large part of the revenue generation capability of any company. While this may be a bold claim, there is no doubt that a brand is nothing without it’s customers. Therefore, the goal of every company should be to create a continuous and on going relationship with their clients.
The objective of every marketing team is to bring in new customers. Grow their lifetime value and then convert them into brand ambassadors, who can then influence others in their network to convert.
The Old Way
In today’s digital world, the way we approach marketing has changed. Consumers are constantly connected through digital media and social networks. The old approach to marketing was to reach as many people as possible with a single message within a single moment in time.
Today’s marketers view engagement as simply customer renewals or retention rates. That it is merely a brand awareness tool. They believe that the act of engagement occurs in the middle or even at the end of the marketing funnel.
This can no longer be case. In order to engage with the consumer of today, we have to take the time to learn more about our customers. We have to connect with them on an individual level. And not only that, this connection should endure for over a lifetime.
This may seem impossible, but it is something that is well within the realm of your capabilities.
How to Engage
Engagement marketing is defined by more than just click through rates and purchases and revenue generation. In order to truly connect with a customer, we have to create an emotional connection with them. It involves building a personal relationship with each client. It implies involving yourself with your customers, knowing what they like, what they dislike and even more importantly, the why of those reasons.
In short, this approach should mimic the actions and feelings you develop with friends in your personal life. Think about this for a second: would you care to interact with a friend who is hard to get a hold of and never listens to you? Of course not! So what type of friend do you want your company to be?
The Building Blocks
In order to transition to an engagement marketing approach, a shift in focus needs to take place. The people responsible for sales and services need to concentrate on creating a meaningful experience for the customer.
A New Era
In the beginning, competition was driven by price. Whoever had the lowest prices had the edge on the competition. The next big thing was brand awareness – who are we and what do we represent. The game evolved to include experience – consider Apple and Starbucks; they sell not just a product but a lifestyle.
I believe that engagement marketing is the new basis for competition amongst companies. Customers will appreciate companies that take the time to get to know them and their likes. The perfect example is Amazon. Every purchase is accompanied by suggestions based on previous ones.
It is an exciting time to be involved in marketing. The paradigms of the past are fading fast. It is a new frontier and the companies that take advantage of these new developments will rise to the top.
Engagement marketing represents an opportunity to connect with customers. We are no longer talking about just sales. We can move beyond talking at people to conversing with them. It cans top being just about purchases, renewals and revenue.
It is about creating lifelong relationships. How great is that?
I look forward to your comments and recommendations.