The excessive noise of messages all around us - bombarding all of our senses - has forced a change in most effective marketing techniques. Has your strategy changed?
From the wisdom of Seth Godin:
Here’s an experience that we’ve all had. You call a big company. You hear a recording that says, “Your call is very important to us, but due to unusually heavy call volume, we don’t have anyone to answer your call,” and they put you on hold for ten minutes. Then the person who answers the phone is measured on how fast they get you to hang up.
That’s the opposite of customer engagement. This company spent a lot of time and money to set up a phone queuing system. Then when you talk to them, they don’t care enough to talk back, or if they do talk back, they put someone in your face who has been programmed to be a cog in a machine.
If you’re serious about engaging the customer, you realize that the most valuable moments you have are when the customer is using your product, on the phone with you, actually engaged with you. If we over invest in that, we are far more likely to lead to the other sorts of interactions that we can’t buy, that we can’t control, but that we need desperately to happen.
Let’s face it – Marketing has changed. Since the invention of the newspaper followed by other mass market media – marketing has been about interrupting, intruding and distracting customers with advertising. In some cases, large massive amounts of money have been spent. And as that method of marketing has grown from media to product placement and event adverting - the noise has become defining. But we have become more and more adapted to blocking the noise – both visual and audible.
Now with the availability of social media and big data, many marketers measure success in “Likes” and “Followers”. Meanwhile customers are tracked, categorized, stalked and manipulated in the attempt to sell them something they don’t want. At times it is even creepy.
It is time to start to engage customers, to listen, to understand, to delight. It is time to build meaningful relationships. Studies have shown that customers who have experienced a problem that was quickly resolved are more loyal than those who didn't experience a problem.
Communicate in ways that add value. Provide useful and timely information that helps inform or entertain your customers. Be authentic and sincere.
Resolve problems quickly and easily. The long term value of a customer is much more valuable than a single interaction. And with social media a brand can be built or destroyed in days.
Thank and reward loyal customers..they are your best sales people. Thank you notes, special offers and tasteful, useful promotional products are great ways to help bond your relationship.