You might think you know what your customers want, but the reality is that they’re telling you what they want by the decisions they make and actions they take. Instead of forcing them to swim upstream, float down the river to where they are.
Meeting And Exceeding Customer Expectations
Competition is good for consumers. Whereas an individual customer used to have just one or two choices for where they could buy a specific product, the internet now gives them dozens of options. This forces your hand and requires you to meet (and even exceed) customer expectations in order to close the sale. Otherwise, they’ll go somewhere else.
Every customer segment is unique, but here are four powerful ways to meet your customers right where they are:
1. Satisfy The Desire For Research
According to this infographic from Perfect Search Media, 81 percent of shoppers conduct online research before buying, while half of all shoppers spend at least 75 percent of their total time conducting online research. In other words, today’s buyers do their due diligence before pulling the trigger. From a marketing perspective, you need to be looking for ways to satisfy this desire for research through fresh content creation and strategic publishing/sharing.
For many businesses, video content is the missing piece to the content marketing puzzle. When customers are looking for advice, or want information on a specific product feature, one of the first things they’re going to do is visit YouTube and look for a video review or tutorial. By providing video content that meets their needs, you can earn your brand more exposure and infiltrate their purchase process in an organic way.
2. Engage On Social Media
Despite the clear value in social media as a marketing and branding tool, many businesses – particularly those that would consider themselves to be “small” businesses – lack any significant presence on networks like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.
You don’t need to hire a full-time social media manager, but you do need a strategy that allows you to engage your audience and tap into the influence that these networks provide. If you find yourself low on resources, social media automation tools like these may help.
3. Gather And Implement Feedback
A lot of businesses gather feedback from customers, but only a fraction use this information to initiate valuable change or execute new ideas. Unfortunately, this often leads to customers feeling disrespected. As one study notes, 68 percent of customers who don’t return to a business blame poor customer service and the perceived indifference of staff and management.
Gathering feedback is fairly easy to do. You can use any number of avenues – including social media, email, phone, and website surveys – but don’t stop there. Make sure you’re coming up with methods for reviewing feedback and then finding ways to implement the information you receive (or at least communicating to your customers that you’re taking their opinions seriously).
Working With Your Customers
From a business strategy perspective, control is something that feels good. It’s nice knowing that when you do “X” and “Y”, “Z” will happen. There’s a rhythm to control that makes it predictable and powerful.
However, it also robs customers of their input – which is increasingly valuable in a modern marketplace that gives consumers avenues to express themselves and make personalized decisions.
If you really want to engage your customers, you have to listen to their needs and meet them where they are. That doesn’t mean you have to totally remove your hands from the strategy of engagement, outreach, marketing, and advertising, but you should work with the grain – as opposed to against it.
The net result will be higher engagement and greater conversions.
If you are interested in even more business-related articles and information from us here at Bit Rebels then we have a lot to choose from.