By now, most businesses understand the importance of having a social media presence. Less clear, however, is exactly how to engage customers through social media. After all, having several social media accounts is largely ineffective if they’re not used to generate and nurture leads. To learn how to reach potential customers online, consider the following tips for engaging on social media.
1. Transparency matters. Customer loyalty is born when customers feel emotionally connected to your brand. Without transparency, it’s difficult for customers to form that attachment. Social media allows your business to avoid being a faceless, emotionless entity. Introduce your employees through social media. Give customers a behind-the-scenes glimpse of your business. Ask for customers to give feedback– and then respond to their input.
2. Be easy to find. In order to engage with customers on social media, you must first ensure that they can find your accounts. Keep your account names simple so that they’re easily searchable. Place social media icons in highly visible spots on your company website. Simply put: make it as easy as possible for customers to like or follow your social media accounts.
3. Ask questions. What better way to engage your customers than by asking for their opinions? Pose thoughtful, open-ended questions to followers of your social media accounts. Try to keep the questions positive and relevant to your company. For example, the owner of a cupcake shop might pose the following question on her Facebook page: If you could custom create a cupcake flavor, what would it be?
4. Be open to criticism. Let’s face it: when you open yourself up to direct communication with customers, not every interaction is positive. Customers will voice their opinions– including the negative ones. Instead of shying away from public displays of criticism, use them as an opportunity to relate to your customers. Respond to every critical post without being defensive. If possible, fix the problem. Make sure your interactions with the critical customer are solution-driven and empathetic.
Are you ready to truly engage your customers on social media? Contact us today for more tips.
Rhiannon Hendrickson is the founder and CEO of Orapin Marketing + Public Relations, which helps purpose-driven businesses increase awareness and attract clients and partners. She has worked with organizations of all sizes across myriad sectors to develop memorable and effective communications programs that generate awareness, engagement, and, ultimately, support for those that are making a meaningful impact.