Your relationships with your customers are important tools for building your business and making growth happen.
The more involved your customers are with your brand, the more likely it is that they will remain loyal and bring other customers into the fold.
Social media offers an excellent sphere to reach out and connect with your customers for brand development, but only if you know how to use it effectively.
Having a social media presence isn’t enough. You have to be active and take steps to make sure that your image is positive and your customer base is increasing. You need to get people talking about your brand. Not just celebrity representatives, but real people, too. Building relationships with your customers isn’t complicated, it just takes a little bit of time and effort.
Here are six great ways that you can engage with your customers in the social media sphere to build better relationships, maintain loyalty, and manage your brand development.
Reach out and start a conversation
Many businesses spend all of their time reacting to what customers on social media say to them. A real, meaningful relationship is a two-way street. If you want to build and strengthen customer relationships, you need to reach out to them, too. Don’t wait for a complaint or other feedback to say something.
Instead, make the first move and send messages out. Don’t just rely on impersonal blast messages — send personalized messages to individuals. Whether you reach out to random followers, biggest fans, or even prospective customers, a little effort will go a long way.
Let Them See The Man Behind The Curtain
Customers don’t usually want to engage with a big, faceless corporate entity. They want humanity, so give them what they want! Make jokes, share amusing posts or memes, and put forth content that brings personality to your brand. You don’t have to nix the professional image, or even get too lighthearted if it doesn’t mesh well with your image.
You just have to show the people that there is someone real behind the brand. Hire actual people to handle your social media accounts, rather than bots, and allow them to build a tone and voice for your brand in the social media sphere.
Faster Responses Yield Stronger Relationships
People don’t like feeling ignored, and they also don’t like to wait. It’s important to actively monitor social media and respond quickly when someone reaches out or otherwise acknowledges your brand and posts. The longer people have to wait before hearing back from a brand, the more harm is done to your reputation.
A response within a few hours is good, but a response within a few minutes is even better. This is where it helps to have real people monitoring your accounts for extended periods of time. People want to know that a real person is reading their feedback, so don’t let bots do the talking. Quickness is important to brand development, but so is a personal touch.
Use Social Media To Admit Mistakes
Your first instinct might be to hide any negative feedback from the public view on your social media accounts, but that would be a mistake. People make mistakes, and one of the things you are doing on social media is showing your customers that you are human. Not only can showing honesty through your mistakes display your good character, but they can also be a great opportunity to build a positive reputation.
Respond to complaints about mistakes immediately, and make it right in a big way. If you can turn your customer’s experience from negative to positive, they are likely to share it. You can also share it to show everyone your character; when you make a mistake, you fix it.
Show Appreciation Using Social Media
Customer appreciation is very important, and social media offers another great way to reach out and say thank you. If a customer is a big fan and shares your posts or product experiences frequently, give them a shout out and acknowledge their loyalty. If your company reaches a milestone, send out a big thank-you to your customers so everyone can see that you are appreciative of their business.
A mass thank-you is great; targeted, personalized appreciation messages are even better. Give yourself a reputation for appreciation, and your customers will appreciate you right back.
Reward Social Media Engagement
Your image and brand development on social media is only partly determined by what you post yourself. A larger part is built by the things that your customers and followers are sharing and writing about you. In order to encourage sharing and customer engagement, you can reward the people who are constantly sharing and raising positive awareness for your brand.
This can mean sending out gifts to your top customers to say thank you, or it can mean holding a contest to see who can get the most likes or shares on a post about you. The more creative you get, the more attention it will draw, and the more people will be encouraged to share and engage with your brand.
Find More Ways to Build Customer Relationships With Thrive Marketing
These are just a few of the many ways that you can reach out to your customers and use them to improve your image and grow your business. The more unique and creative you can get with your social media engagement, the more likely you are to get attention from more than just your loyal fan base.
For more great ideas on how to build your brand and manage your customer relationships, see our other helpful information or reach out for expert advice from our team at Thrive!