Customer engagement is crucial for business success in today‘s highly competitive market. Research shows companies with high customer engagement enjoy up to 60% higher average order value and have customers that spend twice as much with them.
With consumers now expecting personalized, seamless experiences when interacting with brands, customer engagement strategies require constant evolution to drive growth.
This comprehensive guide explores 20 of the top customer engagement strategies for 2023 every business should consider implementing.
What is Customer Engagement and Why Does it Matter?
Customer engagement refers to a customer‘s emotional connection and active relationship with a brand. Highly engaged customers are loyal advocates who drive growth through repeated purchases, word-of-mouth referrals, reviews, social shares, feedback and more.
Some key metrics that reveal effective customer engagement include:
- Repeat Purchase Rate: Percentage of customers that purchase from your brand more than once. High repeat rates signify loyalty.
- Net Promoter Score (NPS): Measures likelihood of a customer to recommend your brand to others. Positive scores indicate strong engagement.
- Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) Scores: Evaluate overall happiness of customers with your brand. Higher scores mean higher perceived value and engagement.
In today‘s crowded marketplace, customer engagement is a competitive differentiator – brands that successfully engage their audience will see greater success through retention, referrals, increased spend and more.
With the basics covered, here are 20 winning customer engagement strategies for 2023:
1. Build a Strong Brand Voice
Your brand voice encompasses the emotional tone, style and messaging used throughout all brand communications across channels and touchpoints.
A thoughtful, consistent brand voice fosters familiarity and connection with your audience – from your website copy to social media captions to sales team interactions.
Ensuring cohesion of your brand voice involves defining:
- Personality Traits
- Visual Style
When aligned across teams and embodied throughout the customer journey, a steady brand voice is a powerful emotional touchpoint.
2. Share Your Brand Story
Stories stir emotion and facilitate connection better than any metric or feature list can. A compelling brand story humanizes your company, tugs at heart strings and spotlights shared values with your customers.
Elements to effective brand storytelling include highlighting:
- The founder’s journey
- Passions, motivations and ‘why’ behind the brand
- Impactful interactions with happy customers
- Company values and beliefs
- Interesting brand origins and history
When shared across channels through video interviews, podcast appearances, About Us pages and more, your story forms an emotional touchpoint.
Data shows buyers that feel an emotional connection with a brand demonstrate 230% greater customer lifetime value. Share your story and reap the rewards of heightened engagement.
3. Facilitate Seamless Omnichannel Experiences
Meet consumers on their channel of choice by facilitating coordinated, unified messaging and experiences across all touchpoints – this is omni-channel engagement.
Channels to connect across include:
- eCommerce shop
- Mobile apps
- Social media
- Physical stores
- Call centers
Omnichannel coordination requires back-end changes to break down internal silos between departments managing different channels. By facilitating data sharing and aligned KPIs company-wide, seamless omni-channel experiences become possible.
Omnichannel consumers demonstrate a 30% higher lifetime value – by engaging them consistently across channels, increased conversions and satisfaction follows.
4. Partner With Relevant Influencers
Influencer marketing is partnering with social media content creators that engage with your target audience. Their authentic advocacy provides trust and access to new networks.
Relevancy is key in influencer partnerships – ensure chosen creators strongly align with your brand identity and target demographic.
Micro-influencers with smaller, highly targeted audiences drive the highest engagement and conversions. Maintain authenticity by granting creative freedom rather than dictating strict promotional guidelines.
If uncertain how to connect with relevant influencers, tools like Ainfluencer simplify outreach and campaign management from start to finish.
5. Map The Entire Customer Journey
The customer journey encompasses every touchpoint and interaction – from initial brand awareness through to loyalty and retention.
Mapping this process for your brand enables identifying friction points and opportunities to better engage consumers.
Moments to enhance connection include:
Initial Awareness Stage: Target quality traffic sources to introduce ideal consumers to your brand through channels matching their preferences. Facilitate understanding of your value proposition through clear messaging.
Consideration Phase: Provide value-driven content about your offering while segmenting consumers by need and priority to nurture correctly.
Conversion & Purchase: Streamline this experience through clear calls-to-action, frictionless payment options, discounts and cash reward incentives.
Post-Purchase: Prioritize exceptional service and consider replenishment reminder emails or surprise discount codes to encourage return purchases from happy customers.
Get granular with your map to unlock targeted engagement opportunities at each transition between stages.
6. Develop Quality Educational Content
Content that meaningfully educates customers about your industry, products, or aligned topics provides value. This value positions your brand as a helpful thought leader while meeting audience information needs.
Top-performing content formats include:
- Blog Articles/eBooks
- Video Tutorials
- Industry Research & Reports
- Email/Newsletter Series
To attract and retain audience attention, emphasize helpfulness rather than overt branding or promotions. Useful content demonstrates your commitment to customers while nurturing relationships.
7. Produce Shareable Visual Content
Incorporating eye-catching visual components into your content strategy fuels organic reach as it gets shared across social channels.
Shareable visual formats include:
- Photos: High-quality images featuring people using your products resonate best. Ensure authenticity.
- Illustration: Commission or create custom branded graphics and comics to embed in written content.
- Video: Demo products, highlight company culture, share brand narratives cinematically. Shorter formats under 60 seconds trend best across TikTok and Instagram.
- Carousels: Post series of images or tiles that followers can horizontally swipe through on Instagram and Facebook.
- Instagram Reels: Produce fun 15 to 30 second in-app videos using viral trends, memes, transitions and music. Highly sharable.
- YouTube Shorts: Capture brief 60 second or less entertaining and informative bite-sized video clips natively in the YouTube app.
8. Personalize as thoroughly as possible
Personalized messaging demonstrates an emotional investment in truly understanding and catering to customers.
Leverage data and analytics to uncover individual behaviors and preferences. Use these insights to tailor content and experiences.
- Website Personalization: Display different site content to specific segments based on interests, location and browsing history.
- Email Segmentation: Separate consumers by behavior to send targeted promotions, education or service-oriented messaging per subgroup needs.
- Social Media: Comment with tailored value on relevant follower posts instead of blasting promotional copy.
- Marketing: Create customized audience microsegments that allow fine-tuned targeting of tailored campaigns.
Personal experience improvements impact bottom lines: 48% of consumers made additional purchases due to personalization tactics. Start segmenting!
9. Commit To Relationship Marketing
Traditional marketing tactics emphasize individual conversions and transactions rather than long-term nurturing. Relationship marketing instead focuses on customer loyalty cultivated through trust and satisfaction.
This approach prizes aspects like:
– Customer service excellence: Invest in call center training and streamline returns/refund policies.
– Loyalty incentives: Provide exclusive perks through members-only sales or VIP early product access based on past purchase frequency or dollar amount thresholds achieved.
– Post-purchase care: Send thank you emails, discounts off next orders and friendly check-ins demonstrating your ongoing helpful commitment.
By providing supportive, personalized experiences matching audience expectations, relationship marketing improves longevity through improved connection. Brands embracing this report 30 to 85% increases in customer lifetime value.
10. Incorporate Live Chat Support
Immediately connecting website visitors to customer support reps via live chat windows boosts opportunity for helpful brand interactions.
Over half of consumers state 24/7 live chat availability increases their trust in a company. Further perks include:
- Increased on-site engagement and lower bounce rates
- Higher conversion rates from built-in sales rep accessibility
- Quick resolution capability for consumer questions/issues
Prioritize fast response times and staff availability late nights and weekends to maximize convenience. Monitor frequently asked questions to identify self-service article opportunities.
11. Actively Listen and Collect Customer Feedback
Soliciting open-ended customer insights through surveys, interviews and reviews unveils pain points plus opportunities to improve engagement.
Make gathering multi-channel feedback simple through:
- Website exit surveys
- Post-purchase email questionnaires
- Proactive social media requests for testimonials
- Net Promoter Score (NPS) polls
Collecting data is step one – taking action based on revelations is crucial for relationship-building. Close feedback loops by directly showing customers how their input helps evolve better experiences.
12. Respond Thoughtfully to Reviews & Mentions
Monitoring brand mentions across the web enables acknowledging happy customers while politely addressing constructive criticisms.
To maximize review response impact:
- Thank every positive reviewer by name publically
- Address negative claims calmly with action plan for improvement
- Maintain consistent brand voice across channels
Responsiveness to feedback demonstrates commitment to your customers first above profits. Further, 92% of buyers now read online reviews before purchases – owning your reputation is a must.
13. Host Live or Virtual Events
In-person and digital events centered around entertainment, education or community provide memorable touchpoints between audiences, brand experts and peers sharing common interests.
Popular examples include:
- Industry conferences
- Exclusive meetups or receptions
- Lunch & learn webinars
- Volunteer opportunities
- Sweepstakes with prizes
- Product launch parties
Unique to events is an environment fostering authentic interactions and relationship building. While performance metrics help inform strategy, the ultimate focus should be facilitating lasting positive memories.
14. Meet Customers Where They Are
This next strategy connects back to omnichannel coordination – market to consumers on the platforms and channels they actively use rather than trying to dictate engagement terms.
For example, TikTok boasts over 1 billion active users. Ignoring this high-scale platform means missing crucial opportunities to capture younger generations.
Begin channel exploration by:
- Researching rising platform popularity statistics globally and amongst your target market
- Surveying existing audience followership reach per channel through polls and conversations
- Investing early in owned profiles and ad campaigns per platform showing promise
Get found where they already are, communicating on their terms and in their environments. By giving audiences sought-after value rather than assuming desired channels, modern marketers find success.
15. Invest In Customer Service Teams
Customer facing teams represent your brand directly through support conversations each day. Becoming reliable helpers able to save the day drives positive associations.
A 5% increase in retention from excellent service translates to 25 to 85% increased customer LTV – service pays dividends.
Provide internal teams the tools they need through:
- Advanced Help Desk Software: Connect consumer data and enable efficient issue tracking.
- Thorough Training Programs: Cover product details, best practices communications, objections and scenario resolutions.
- Team incentives: Praise responsiveness, offer flexible schedules and performance-based rewards reinforcing service key performance indicators (KPIs).
Happy internal teams facilitate happy customers – put people first on both sides.
16. Offer a Loyalty Rewards Program
Everyone enjoys feeling valued through special perks, discounts and gift incentives. This fuels an ongoing positive relationship.
Loyalty program best practices include:
- Require enrollment for access, capturing member contact data for personalized nudges
- Track member purchase frequency, dollar amount, products bought and more to inform targeted incentive levels based on activity
- Offer exclusive member flash sales, early access to new arrivals and seasonal gift product bundles
- Send surprise and delight discounts or free promotional products to recognize ongoing support
Members demonstrate a 137% higher lifetime value over casual buyers – incentive programs pay dividends.
17. Engage Followers on Social Media
Simply maintaining an owned media presence falls short – interaction and relationship building is required.
Ways to engage followers include:
- Like and thoughtfully comment on audience content frequently rather than just blasting promotions
- Reply to every query and comment with helpfulness
- Ask questions and run polls to encourage responses while learning preferences
- Monitor discussions and hashtags relevant to your industry, contributing genuinely valuable insights
Media is relational, not a one-way broadcast channel. Foster connections through regular non-promotional dialog.
18. Run Customer Contests & Sweepstakes
Introducing a spirit of playfulness and friendly competition energizes your audience while incentivizing further reach as participants invite friends and share contest pages.
Popular examples feature:
- User-generated photo or story competitions
- Quiz contests testing product knowledge where correct entrants gain entries
- Loyalty member appreciation contests rewarding ongoing support and referrals
- Hashflag contests sponsored by brands wanting user posts to spread awareness of a launch
Tie contests to important business objectives around launches, growth or retention goals rather than running initiatives aimlessly. Align objectives to strategy and structure plays purposefully.
19. Send Targeted Push Notifications
Push notifications allow sending important updates directly to customers that opt-in through web or mobile app messaging prompts. High open rates near 90% reveal their effectiveness recapturing wandering attention.
To ensure relevancy and performance:
- Limit volume to 2-3 higher value updates monthly to avoid overwhelming customers
- Personalize notifications dynamically introducing first names and reflecting past behaviors
- Promote flash sales, product launches and events
- Deliver automated post-purchase thank you notes and shipping confirmations
When sent thoughtfully, timed well and featuring valuable information, push messages feel helpful rather than intrusive, strengthening engagement.
20. Always Be Analyzing Performance Data
Digital analytics provide incredible visibility into customer actions – capitalize by relentlessly analyzing? engagement metrics.
Key behavioral data points to consistently monitor include:
- Traffic source effectiveness to inform optimized channel budget allocations
- Landing page bounce rates showing where consumers lose interest
- Shopping cart abandonment friction points impacting purchase completion
- Email open, clickthrough and unsubscribe rates quantifying campaign resonance
- Web or app page dwell time reflecting content quality
- Survey feedback and NPS performance evaluating sentiment
Quantifying digital body language informs targeted engagement optimizations – leaving such insights invisible on the table leaves money behind. Embed analysis and learn.
Customer engagement remains a moving, evolving target requiring constant innovation and commitment. By truly listening to your audience and fine-tuning communications to resonate across societies ever-updating preferences, connection and conversions follow.
Leave a lasting impact by embodying purpose. Build an influential brand by focusing on the hearts and minds you serve. Pursue excellence – the greatest differentiator setting beloved brands apart is still a quality, emotional experience speaking to the soul.
Choose to lead with care.