How to communicate directly to your customers online
With all the time and effort that goes into building your business and gaining customers, you need to ensure you are consistently communicating with your customers directly and letting them know you appreciate them. It’s not enough to get customers, you have to keep them.
This busy and distracting world means that good customer service stands out and can give your business an edge, while poor customer service can lead to a lack of sales and loss of credibility.
Communication should be a top priority in your business, as it can be the difference between a good and bad customer experience. Customers always appreciate transparency and honesty.
These days, there are endless ways to communicate directly with your customers, especially online. Some of the most effective ways are:
To communicate directly with customers, it makes sense to spend your time where your customers are.
Social media is where a lot of people hang out, or go to find out more information about businesses, events or products. Therefore your business should have a presence there.
You don’t need to be across every social media platform, in fact that may be a waste as you may not be able to give each one your all. The best way to go about it is to find the one or two social platforms that best suit your business and attract your audience, and focus your energies there. If you’re not too sure what platforms to choose, check out our blog post ‘which social media platforms suit your business’ to help you.
Once you’ve narrowed down the social media platforms for your business, make sure you are active and engaging with your audience. Have a look at what others in your field are doing successfully, and try to emulate this, with your own style.
Your website and blog
If you’re building up your business online, you must have a website. It doesn’t have to be complex, but at a minimum you need a landing place for people if they want to seek more information about you. Your website needs to be on brand and consistent with your social media and other online avenues. If you’d like more information on what your website should include, check out this post ‘5 must haves for your website.’
A blog on your website can be a great way to improve SEO so that your business ranks higher in search engines, and also helps you provide value and thought leadership to your customers. You can write about parts of your business that are of interest to others, and offer information to help others learn. A blog is also a great vehicle to subtly promote your products and services. Just know that you need to write what they want to read, not always what you think they should read.
Newsletters and eDMs
Newsletters and email direct marketing (eDM) are hugely popular and have proven to be beneficial to many businesses. Many customers are more than happy to give you their email address for you to keep in contact with them.
This is a great opportunity for your business to provide content to them, without being too over the top with sales, and if done right you will have customers for life. You can send them business updates, offers, your recent blog posts, behind the scenes photos and stories, and anything else that might interest them. Remember, you’re building a following, not just fishing for sales.
Webinars or live videos
Videos and webinars are a great value add for your customers through providing engaging and targeted content.
Live videos can be broadcast in numerous ways, from Facebook Live videos and Periscope, to YouTube or Snapchat. You can also post videos on your blog or other parts of your website.
A great way to offer workshops and training is in the form of a webinar. A webinar is usually set up for a specific time and date, and is like a conference call online, where many people opt in to watch it, and you can either teach them through speaking to the camera directly or by sharing your computer screen with them.
No matter the platform, when speaking with your customers online, it’s best practice to keep a consistent tone and style, one that is in line with your brand. That way, your customers will always know what to expect from you, and you’ll start to build up a following. Make sure that if people are responding to you in any format, that you take the time to comment back or reply to their email. Without them, you would not have a business, so it pays to engage!
Overall, the best communication method for your business and your customers will depend on your business type and target audience. It’s a good idea to try a few different options until you find the few that suit your business best. Contact us today to find out how you can connect directly with your customers.