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Why social media is the key to customer engagement

Why social media is the key to customer engagement

Customer engagement for modern consumers starts with social media. This should come as no shock as most of us – 5.2 billion users – are on social platforms today.

All those people could become followers, customers, or supporters of your brand. Social media is important for connecting with them and enhancing their experience with your brand. The key to authentic interactions that drive business growth and nurture customer loyalty.

Let's explore why social media is important for connecting with your audience. It plays a crucial role in engaging customers. Your business must adapt its interactions with today's consumers.

What does customer engagement mean?

Customer engagement refers to the experiences a customer has with a brand throughout their entire customer journey. Engaging customers means creating good relationships, keeping them loyal, and giving them value. This creates good experiences that make customers want to continue buying from a brand and tell others about it.

This includes things that assist customers, like educational info, customer support, loyalty programs, and interactive platforms like social media. The goal is to create a real bond with the customer, promoting ongoing engagement and involvement with the brand.

Engaged customers are happier and more loyal, leading to increased satisfaction and advocacy. They are likely to have positive experiences with the brand and share them with others, particularly for brands who prioritize authenticity.

What is the role of social media in customer engagement?

Brands use social media to quickly connect with customers, engaging with their audience in real-time for effective communication. It enables companies to share content, engage in conversations, respond to customer queries, and gather feedback directly from customers.

Brands can use social media to connect with customers in a personal and interactive way, building a community. This immediate and dynamic form of communication enhances customer satisfaction and loyalty, driving engagement beyond traditional advertising means.

Social media is crucial for customer experience as it is always available to customers in their everyday lives. Customers expect businesses to be available on social media whenever they need assistance.

Here are specific ways social media now impacts your customer engagement:

Increase brand awareness

Social media significantly amplifies brand awareness by enabling users to share and view content with a vast, global audience. Brands can attract new customers by posting often, making engaging content, and running interactive campaigns instead of traditional marketing. Social media management platforms make it easier to share a brand's message with specific groups. This helps target the right audience and reach more people.

Improve customer experience and satisfaction

Social media enhances customer experience and satisfaction by providing a direct channel for communication and support. Brands can assist customers, address issues, and provide personalized support on social media.

This helps people view your brand positively. By watching social media and feedback, you can learn what customers like and want. This helps you improve your brand's products and services to better meet customer needs.

Foster customer feedback and loyalty

Your activity on social media fosters customer feedback and loyalty by creating an open forum for customers to share their experiences and thoughts about your brand. This feedback is invaluable for brands looking to improve their products and services.

Interacting with customers on social media can build a loyal group of supporters. These supporters may then recommend your brand to others, which can boost trust and loyalty in your brand.

Increased website traffic and eCommerce conversions

Remember how modern consumers crave social proof? Typically, that proof comes in the form of social media spread across your customer journey. That means that social media – like UGC, ratings and reviews, or influencer content – can help boost your website traffic and improve eCommerce conversion rates.

It does this when brands deploy social proof in key places that validate purchase decisions – like this example from Wool and the Gang that increased the repeat-visit rate by 362% and doubled the likelihood of purchase. Brands who use engaging content can spark interest and lead potential customers to explore more about your products or services, through shoppable links in posts, bios, and ads.

How to improve customer engagement with social media

Social media is a powerful tool for improving customer engagement, fostering brand loyalty, and driving business growth. Here are some strategies to leverage social media for enhanced customer engagement:

Build relationships with customers

Engage in meaningful conversations with customers on social media. Respond to comments, mentions, and direct messages in a timely and personalized manner. Show appreciation for customer loyalty and support, fostering a sense of community and connection. Social listening is crucial to staying updated on trends impacting customers and understanding their behaviors.

Share authentic content

People sharing their opinions on social media is a valuable form of word-of-mouth advertising. This is done through user-generated content (UGC) and reviews, which can be effective in reaching a wide audience. A study by Emplifi and Harris Interactive found that 71% believe positive user reviews labeled as "authentic" influence consumer buying choices. This means using reviews and real customer content in your marketing is an important way to connect with customers.

Connect your community and customer care teams

Utilize social media as a customer service channel, promptly responding to queries, complaints, and feedback. Address concerns efficiently and effectively, demonstrating a commitment to customer satisfaction. For that to work, you must ensure the customer doesn’t have to jump through the hoops of messaging a social media profile for one inquiry and digging to find customer service for another. To provide good social customer care, connect with your customers and understand their needs and experiences.

Run social events, contests, and giveaways

Organize social media contests and giveaways to generate excitement, attract new followers, and reward existing customers. Design contests that align with your brand and target audience, encouraging participation and UGC. These moments can drive social media engagement around holidays, priority eCommerce events, or any important dates to your customers.

Collect customer feedback

Leverage social media as a platform to gather customer feedback, insights, and suggestions. Encourage customers to share their experiences, opinions, and ideas through polls, surveys, and direct messages. Use this feedback to improve products, services, and overall customer experiences. To maintain an effective relationship with your customers, you must regularly seek feedback.

These steps can help improve how you engage with customers on social media and across their entire journey. But to do that effectively and efficiently, you likely need a customer engagement solution.

What is a customer engagement solution?

Customer engagement includes interactions like customer service, social media, website visits, feedback collection, UGC, and ratings/reviews. It involves connecting with customers through different channels and gathering their opinions. That will create a considerable amount of data, which is pivotal for understanding your audience and personalized experiences.

A customer engagement solution is software that helps businesses interact better with customers through different channels. It helps manage and improve customer interactions. These solutions help create a good customer experience by building strong connections between customers and the brand.

Key features include social media management, community management, customer care, and reporting capabilities to track engagement levels, sentiment, and customer behavior. A customer engagement solution helps companies improve interactions with customers. This leads to increased customer satisfaction, loyalty, and willingness to recommend the company to others.

Why you need a customer engagement solution

By analyzing customer engagement metrics such as website traffic, social media engagement, customer satisfaction surveys, and repeat purchase rates, brands can gain valuable insights into customer behavior, preferences, and pain points. These metrics serve as indicators of the effectiveness of customer engagement strategies and help businesses identify areas for improvement.

That’s why you need a customer engagement solution. A customer engagement solution gives brands a centralized view of customer interactions, making tracking customer behavior, identifying trends, and improving customer service easier. There are many benefits to using a customer engagement solution, including:

  • Improved customer service: A customer engagement solution can help businesses provide better customer service by allowing them to track customer interactions and respond to customer inquiries quickly and efficiently.

  • Unified analytics: The ability to view all customer interactions and data in one place from across social media, social commerce, and customer care. This is the only way to quickly identify actionable insights and react to your customers’ behaviors.

  • Increased conversions: A customer engagement solution can help brands increase sales. This is done by identifying and targeting their most valuable customers and providing personalized offers and interaction.

  • Stronger customer relationships: A customer engagement solution can help brands build stronger relationships with their customers. It can do so by providing them with a personalized experience and making it easy for them to interact with the brand.

  • Reduced costs: A customer engagement solution can help businesses reduce costs by automating customer service tasks and providing them with insights into customer behavior to help them make better decisions.

These sorts of platforms can also improve the efficiency of your customer engagement efforts, thanks to AI and automation. More efficiency typically means more time for your teams to focus on overall customer experience.

The takeaway: Build relationships with your customers through social media

Customer engagement is crucial to business growth, and social media is a powerful tool to enhance it. By optimizing your social media presence and using a customer engagement solution, you can streamline and amplify your social media efforts, driving business success.

Customer engagement isn’t just about generating sales. It's about building meaningful relationships with your customers, understanding their needs and preferences, and providing them with value beyond the initial purchase. Social media platforms offer a unique opportunity to engage with your customers in real-time, providing personalized experiences and fostering a sense of community around your brand.

If you’re interested in learning how Emplifi’s end-to-end customer engagement platform can help you engage your customers, support them along their journey, and share social proof across each step, let us know.

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