May 11, 2012

It is becoming increasingly important for businesses to engage their customers online. Blatant online advertizing is not likely to work as well as interacting with the online community of your customers. Enlisted below are some of the most effective ways to take your marketing strategies to the next level by using your prospective and existing customers as a marketing tool.

  • Social networking-It goes without saying that social networking is the single most effective way of engaging your customers. The three top social networking sites with the most active user bases are Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Make sure that you have an active profile on each of these sites, and keep posting pictures and updates that would appeal to your target audience. Creating a profile on these sites and making no effort to keep it going does not make a lot of sense, and will do nothing for your business.
  • Encourage user-generated content on your website- Create a blog that is relevant to what you sell, and allow users to submit their own articles to be posted on it. This will create a feeling of belongingness, and is a great way to keep them coming back to your website.
  • Create a forum for your users- Having a forum on your website, where users can discuss your products and services is a great way to create an online community, and encourage inter-customer relationships, which will translate into increased customer loyalty.
  • Send personalized mails- Shooting across a duplicate promotional mail to all your customers is not going to work, considering that just a fraction of these mails get opened, thanks to increased consumer awareness. A better idea would be to send a personalized mail that starts with Dear (Customer’s name), and actually conveys something that the customer would be interested in. It definitely is worth the effort.
  • Reward your customers- Sending out special offers and discounts that are only applicable for existing customers is a fantastic way of telling them how much you value them. Go that extra mile by devising thoughtful rewards that the customers will truly value.
  • Lastly, remember that the first person who needs to believe in your strategies is you! These words by New York sales trainer Wendy Weiss, author of Cold Calling for Women say it best- “Fear of rejection is the biggest thing that holds people back but you have to take it out of the realm of the personal.”

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