Customer engagement is a buzzword that any CMO or marketing pro can throw around strategy meetings as a top objective, but the pathway to achieving it in any measurable fashion may be more elusive than it seems. Customer engagement can be defined as the connection between a customer and a brand, and this successful connection is more important than ever before.
Highly-engaged customers should be a top goal for your business because:
Nike has been masterful at creating a two-way conversation with its customers and creating a reason to engage for decades, but the just-do-it brand seemingly never rests on its laurels. One visit to the Nike+ website shows how the company has created an online community that adds true value for Nike+ members in terms of rewards but also content tailored toward the Nike customer. From the option to create your own shoe to keeping up with the latest trends to exclusive offers, Nike+ members have a real reason to keep coming back.
JetBlue has built its brand reputation as an airline that goes above and beyond in the area of customer service, so it comes as no surprise that they are a prime example of customer engagement wins via social media. JetBlue recently went viral for their “Chief People Officer Campaign” where mysterious JetBlue employees boarded flights and handed out free airline tickets to random passengers (who flooded their social media accounts with praise and cool stories). In addition to the feel-good promotions, JetBlue has also instituted an expansive social listening initiative which includes responding in real-time to customer needs, giving stressed-out flyers quick responses to their concerns and complaints as well as taking the data to make improvements to the services they provide their customers.
The loyalty club everyone knows by name even if they don’t subscribe, Amazon Prime, is possibly the best example of a successful loyalty program. Amazon Prime users get free, two-day shipping on millions of products offered on the behemoth e-commerce shopping site with no minimum purchase, among other benefits. Prime is a top case study in winning at the loyalty program game because it provides values and incentivizes more sales. According to a report from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners, Prime members spend an average of $1,500 per year on Amazon.com, compared with $625 per year spent by Amazon customers who aren't Prime members.
It’s no real revelation that it is less expensive to keep an existing customer than to acquire a new one, and most data supports the idea that selling new products and services to loyal customers is easier than selling them to prospects. These facts coupled with the social media-driven environment of the moment make customer engagement a focus for nearly all companies across all industries.
Jennifer Seitz, MBA is a writer for TechnologyAdvice.com. She is a marketing & content strategist with over 10 years of helping businesses develop their voice, brand and improve their marketing strategy. She specializes in content development to achieve SEO KPIs, improve the user experience as well as reinforce the overall brand. Jen has a background in large corporations and scrappy startups and currently hangs her hat at the agency she founded, the Content Workshop.
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