The Complete Guide to Mastering Customer Engagement in 2023

The Complete Guide to Mastering Customer Engagement in 2023

Customer experience ·

Making a sale is rarely, if ever, a one-off event or a single occurrence for brands. The same goes for the consumer; most are looking for a reliable brand to shop from that seems to care about their needs and value their business. Most sales manifest as a result of carefully curated marketing efforts and sales funnel. These efforts are time and resource intensive.

High-quality customer engagement is the marketing equitant of a silver bullet for brands looking to stay relevant in the current business climate. Especially when maximizing their return on investment in developing products and retaining more customers.

For most consumers today, the quality of your brand experience is just as important as the quality of your products and services. Improving your customer engagement strategy guarantees long-term customer retention and more loyalty and helps sustain your brand’s reputation to draw in new leads. 

That’s precisely why brands need to reimagine their approach toward customer engagement, and 54% of customers agree. Here are three reasons why understanding and mastering the basics of customer engagement is mission-critical for brands:

What is customer engagement?

Unlike traditional marketing’s one-way approach to targeting customers and selling products, customer engagement is the two-way communication between a brand and its consumer base. These interactions happen throughout the sales and after-sales processes. The consumer chooses where, when, and how to engage with the company.

Customer engagement is your customer’s connection with your brand and includes all interactions. Starting right from product introduction, throughout every touch point of the marketing funnel, and continuing to after-sales services.

These connections can be based on certain vibes your products give them or a series of positive experiences with your company. These attachments keep bringing back brand patrons and drive sustainable profitability for any brand. 

While customer engagement differs from customer service, their end goal is shared: catering to the consumer’s needs and improving the brand experience.

Measuring customer engagement can be complex, involving assessing multiple factors. Some critical gauges of measuring engagement include email click-through rates, net-promoter score, the time consumers spend in physical and online stores, and rates of returning customers.

These KPIs help give marketers an idea of their brand’s engagement with consumers, and they differ for different companies and industries. The common factor here is the pivotal role of customer engagement in the long-term relationship building of any brand with its patrons.

Mastering the art of customer engagement is a long game. You might not immediately see the results, but having consumer-centric engagement policies in place is an investment that continues to strengthen brands. Excellent customer engagement based on data-driven statistics is how you can ensure brand loyalty from your consumers during good economic times and bad.

Creating better engagement strategies: 7 customer engagement ideas to drive growth

Are you looking to boost customer engagement frequency and quality at your company? Here are seven ideas to help you design a winning data-centric customer engagement plan for your business. Incorporate these steps into your current marketing plan to maximize positive interactions with your buyers while improving brand image and making the most of consumer data.

1. Identify key customer engagement metrics

Customer engagement isn’t entirely based on the customer experiences with your company. According to this report, pricing structures, affordability, and actual product quality impact about 80% of engagement, while convenience is responsible for around 55%. But these numbers aren’t set in stone.

Identifying key engagement metrics and the most effective communication avenues like these is the main denominator in the success or failure of any consumer engagement strategy. But customer engagement metrics can differ drastically from brand to brand. 

By analyzing market trends, shifting consumer preferences, and your consumer’s touch points throughout your sales funnel, you’ll be well-informed to proactively design positive interactions for your client base.

That’s where Layerise comes in. The platform offers multiple tools to help marketers develop increasingly accurate customer personas, understand the customer’s journey better and fine-tune their targeting efforts.  It also facilitates customer service representatives to cut down on customer complaint time, automate responses to repetitive questions and reduce the cost of customer support.

But the most significant advantage Layerise offers is its secure and automated data collection tools. Analyzing consumer data generates data-driven statistics essential to excellent customer engagement for your company.

2. Make your brand’s vibe identifiable and consistent 

More than 80% of consumers say they prefer to buy from brands that they trust. Investing in consistent brand messaging is crucial for harvesting the trust of your existing consumer base and engaging new prospective customers.

Customers are twice as likely to give their repeat business to a brand they trust and recognize. But only 31% of customers say they trust brands they currently use or have used. These numbers identify an alarming shift in current customer preferences and the leverage excellent customer engagement can give your brand if done right.

Ensuring the recognizability of your brand and maintaining a consistent brand tone throughout various customer touchpoints has vast potential that remains under-explored in most companies.  Not only can this help boost customer engagement, but it can also help make your brand more reliable for consumers and increase sales through word-of-mouth.

3. Harvest customer data through multiple touchpoints

Customers interact with companies through multiple channels; each is a data collection point for your marketing team. According to more than 75% of marketing experts, customer engagement peaks during the mid and final stages of the marketing and sales funnel. Those are crucial customer touch points opportunities your business can’t afford to miss. 

Small steps such as using a strong CTA, improving packaging, and making the ordering process straightforward can encourage greater customer engagement during these sales funnel stages.

Another way to maximize customer engagement's impact is by ensuring your product development, sales, marketing, and customer service departments are on the same page. More than 75% of consumers expect consistency across a brand’s voice and messaging.

Keeping everyone in the loop also increases the efficiency of consumer data collection processes. An integrated platform like Layerise keeps all data collected through multiple channels organized in individual silos. 

It’s also the best way to boost team collaboration and ensure each team member can access the consumer information they need. That ultimately benefits your company by helping to create a highly personalized brand experience for all consumers.

4. Ensure a solid online presence for your brand

A robust online presence creates multiple ways for your consumers to interact with your band and boost engagement. One of the by-products of amplified customer engagement is lots of consumer touch points that generate consumer data.

Another way bringing your business online helps increase engagement is by cutting customer response time. Potential customers are nine times more likely to convert if the follow-up time is less than five minutes. By using technological solutions such as automated chatbots to strengthen your brand’s online presence, you increase engagement and generate more revenue.

The quality of these technological tools is equally important to keep in mind. Customer engagement can just as easily be discouraged by app glitches and slow-loading web pages. 52% of consumers report that negative mobile-app experiences make them less likely to purchase or interact with that company ever again. Considering almost 90% of millennial shoppers prefer cellular devices for most brand interactions, you can’t risk missing out.

5. Humanize your brand through storytelling

Brands are more than just producers of merchandise or service providers. Customers engage with and buy from brands that seem approachable and relatable. That’s because the human brain naturally responds well to information portrayed in story form

The best way of resonating more deeply with your customer base is through good storytelling that makes your offerings seem more than just the sum of their parts, about 2706% more!

Storytelling is a powerful medium most brands underutilize. Using the element of storytelling in your marketing and brand messaging fosters emotional connections with customers, makes them feel valued, and is a great engagement tool.

Here’s another great idea you can start implementing today: show customers how your brand values their engagement and feedback. That can be encouraged by showcasing their comments, offering discounts to engage customers, or featuring them on social media or your website. By making your patrons part of your company’s brand story, you can reward engagement and inspire new customers to follow suit.

6. Don’t underestimate the power of personalization

Whenever you look at a group picture, whose face do you search for first? For most people, it’s their own. We love seeing personal touches and monograms on the things around us. That's why most of us love shopping even more when experiences are tailored to our specific preferences.

That’s the power of personalization and customization that brands must explore to increase customer engagement rates. Almost 50% of consumers say they’re more likely to make unplanned purchases from a brand if they receive a customized brand experience. Also, about 64% of customers expect a more personalized brand experience when re-buying from a particular brand.

It may look like showcasing products most relevant to a specific consumer, offering specific bundle offers, or improving follow-up after the sale. It’s not just consumers; more than 75% of business leaders also believe tailoring experiences and products are crucial for brands to engage with customers and remain profitable.

Cookies and third-party data are less relevant than a few years ago when delivering that tailored brand experience. As a result, you’re missing out on customer engagement opportunities and business if you still rely on these outdated methods.

Layerise uses data from your customer base to generate relevant statistics for your brand. Using consumer data such as past purchases, queries, and feedback, our platform lets you customize your buyer's experience with your company.

7. Perfect your social media strategy through regular customer engagement

Customer engagement has to happen where the consumer is. For most brands, that now includes multiple social media apps and forums.

Social media started as a way to keep in touch with old college friends and keep an eye on trending topics. Today, it’s a significant source of information for customers and another engagement avenue with massive potential for brands.

77% of consumers choose brands they follow on social media platforms when making buying decisions. When it comes to efficient advertising, investing in your social media ads strategy can increase ROI, customer engagement, and sales even more than search engine advertisements.

Instead of just putting information out there, ensure your brand messaging on social media engages customers. Post regularly on social media forums and encourage consumers to do the same. Introducing reward programs or exclusive discounts for the most active posters can help cultivate that community feel and increase customer engagement on social media platforms.

More and more brands are going online and exploring global markets. These channels present new e-commerce opportunities that can only generate sales through brilliant customer engagement. Most customers use a minimum of 7 different social media platforms each month. More than 78% of these online consumers prefer brands that use Omni channel engagement avenues.

10 steps to boost customer engagement

As a marketing head within a consumer goods brand, engaging with your customers is crucial for your brand's success. By establishing a strong customer engagement strategy, you can increase brand loyalty, drive sales, and improve customer satisfaction. Here you will find 10 necessary steps to implement the best strategy to boost customer engagement.

1. Establish a customer profile sink

The first step in customer engagement is understanding who your customers are. Establishing a customer profile sink can help you collect data on your customers' demographics, buying habits, and preferences. This data can then be used to tailor your marketing campaigns and product offerings to your customers' needs.

2. Create customer-friendly and beneficial digital experience

With the rise of e-commerce, it's more important than ever to create a customer-friendly digital experience. This means creating a user-friendly website, providing helpful product information, and making the checkout process as smooth as possible.

3. Push for product and customer registration

Encouraging customers to register on your website can provide valuable data and insights into their preferences and buying habits. By offering incentives like discounts or exclusive content, you can encourage customers to register and engage with your brand.

4. Analyze customer behavior

Use analytics tools to track your customers' behavior on your website and social media channels. This data can help you identify areas for improvement and create more targeted marketing campaigns.

5. Establish happy funnels

A happy funnel is a series of steps that guide the customer from initial engagement to a purchase. By creating a seamless and enjoyable customer journey, you can increase the likelihood of conversion and improve customer satisfaction.

6. Match campaigns that match your customers’ interests

Use the customer data you've collected to create targeted marketing campaigns that match your customers' interests. This can help you increase engagement and build brand loyalty.

7. Treat your most engaged customers like MVPs

Customers who engage with your brand frequently and spend more money deserve special treatment. Offer personalized discounts, early access to new products, or other perks to keep these customers engaged and loyal.

8. Leverage your up-to-date customer data

Keeping your customer data up-to-date is crucial for effective customer engagement. Regularly refresh your customer profile sink with new data to ensure your marketing campaigns are targeted and effective.

9. Think SMS before email

SMS messages have much higher open rates than emails, so consider using SMS messages to communicate with your customers. Just be sure to get their permission first.

10. Put your customers in the experience driver’s seat

Allow your customers to customize their experiences with your brand by offering options like personalized product recommendations or the ability to create wishlists.

3 customer engagement examples to get you started

Enough statistics and strategies; let’s talk about genuine ideas that might save you the hassle of reinventing the wheel. When increasing customer engagement, the more creative your ideas, the better. Customers love fresh, imaginative ideas off the beaten track that grabs their attention.

Let’s look at the examples of companies that took the creative approach toward maximizing customer engagement and how it turned out for them.

  1. Gymshark

Using a unique blend of customization, inclusivity, and body-positive marketing worked very well for the fitness brand Gymshark. Based on previous data, the brand uses AI to show each customer personalized product recommendations. That drove up customer engagement and product sales.

Another strategy that works well for the brand is teaming up with customers to create content for engagement and marketing. Through the launch of their initiative, “Gymshark Insiders,” the company took a proactive approach towards fostering a sense of community among patrons online and in social media forums.

Gymshrak encouraged its customers to share feedback on their merchandise and how well each marketing campaign performed. The brand then used all its accumulated consumer data to increase interactions and become more customer-centric.

Here are the results of this heightened customer engagement:

  • Gymshark got more than 6000 active customers across Europe and America to share their reviews through these customer engagement schemes. This feedback ultimately inspired the research, development, and launch of new product lines for the brand.

  • Keeping customer preferences at the forefront helped engage more customers and made them feel heard and valued by the brand. As a result, their best-selling sports bra sold out completely two months before their target data.

  • Improving customer engagement also helped the brand secure new orders from prospective customers. The company saw a 150% increase in first-time customer orders during its Black Friday sale.

  1. Whole Foods

The health and natural food retailer has the likes of retail heavy-weights Walmart and Costco to compete against. How did the company manage to not only stay profitable but grow at exceptional rates?

  • By defining their niche and brand identity and working to become the industry leader of their niche.

  • Cultivating the loyalty of a well-engaged customer base by offering a consistent quality of products and experiences.

The brand took advantage of the latest sustainability trend and combined it with raising awareness around wholesome, organic diets. Then they drove up customer engagement by highlighting their responsibly and locally produced products.

The brand updates consumers about its sourcing, growing, and processing practices through social media. That helps them engage and connect with customers while increasing operational transparency.

Whole Foods' social media has another by-product that has helped the brand’s cause: consumer data. The brand uses feedback to constantly tweak its engagement strategy and focus on what works best.

Whole Foods uses different social media handles to focus on various aspects of its business. That helps the brand engage diverse customer bases and segment and target new prospective customers.

Their Twitter account, for example, encourages exchanging healthy cooking and wholesome recipes. Customers often post new ways to use natural ingredients and share reviews there. Despite managing multiple forums, Whole Foods’ brand messaging and “vibe” is consistent throughout all their marketing efforts.

  1. Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream

As counterproductive as it might seem to mention an ice cream brand after analyzing fitness gear and health food, we’re mentioning Jeni’s to showcase the power of excellent customer engagement across different industries.

Jeni’s Splendid Ice-Cream combined old-school values, such as promoting a positive work culture, with newer strategies, such as story-telling through social media, to push customer engagement. The brand’s social media presence is the secret ingredient in its customer engagement recipe.

The former art-student founder of the brand used her creative flair to further distinguish her brand identity from other ice cream companies, which can be seen around their stores. The brand uses visuals such as funky fonts, quotes on walls, and graphics to create an atmosphere that aligns with its brand’s vibe and engages customers walking into their shops. 

Their social media accounts regularly display compelling photographs and videos of the latest offerings, behind-the-scenes, and gifts that further engage customers. The names of the flavors, add-ons, and toppings offered by the brand further pike the consumer’s interest in their products and are also conversation starters that make the brand unique

It’s also another way the brand leverages the power of customization and enhances the brand experience for buyers.  Customers get to make each serving their own by mixing and matching different elements to create a sweet treat.

Jeni’s takes the experience further by encouraging customers to snap pictures of their desserts and post them on social media. Each of their fifteen storefronts offers multiple excellent backgrounds for an impromptu photo session with your creation. Since every order is unique, each social media post is perfect for further customer engagement and free marketing for the brand.

The best software to engage with your customers

Customer engagement is no longer just a buzzword thrown around during marketing conversations. The future of smart technology-driven consumer interactions is now.

Companies that don’t invest in improving customer experiences by ingeniously engaging them might be unable to retain their customers, let alone attract new prospects. Regardless of how exceptional their product or how compatible their prices might be. By next year, almost 40% of all customer interactions are estimated to be taken over by Artificial Intelligence, chatbots, and machine learning.

Layerise’s user-friendly platform has all the tools you need to stay ahead of the competition and truly leverage the power of data for your brand. It helps you streamline your team's efforts to make you a data-centric brand focused on reaching your business goals.

Layerise can increase customer engagement by providing a range of tools and features that make it easier for businesses to interact with their customers in a more personalized and meaningful way. Here are a few ways in which Layerise can help:

Layerise enables businesses to create personalized experiences for each customer based on their preferences, past behavior, and other relevant data. This can include customized content, product recommendations, and tailored promotions, among other things.

Layerise is the perfect tool to personalize your customer experience and increase engagement

Personalization is a crucial aspect of customer engagement, and Layerise offers a range of features and tools to help businesses create personalized experiences for each customer. By leveraging data on customer behavior, preferences, and past interactions, businesses can tailor their messaging and offerings to better meet the needs and desires of their customers.

One way that Layerise enables personalization is through customized content. By using data on a customer's past behavior and preferences, businesses can create content that is specifically tailored to that customer's interests and needs. This can include personalized product recommendations, customized promotions and offers, and targeted messaging that speaks directly to the customer's individual needs.

Another way that Layerise enables personalization is through targeted promotions. By analyzing data on customer behavior and preferences, businesses can create promotions that are specifically designed to appeal to each customer's unique interests and needs. This can help increase the likelihood that customers will take advantage of these promotions and make a purchase, leading to increased engagement and loyalty.

Finally, Layerise also enables personalization through its use of data analytics. By providing businesses with insights into customer behavior and engagement, Layerise can help businesses identify areas where they can improve their customer experience and create more effective marketing campaigns. This data-driven approach to personalization can help businesses stay ahead of the curve and ensure that they are providing the best possible experience for their customers.

Sign up for a free demo today to see how Layerise can help increase customer engagement for your brand during your marketing, sales, and after-sales services.