Taking your relationship with your customers to the next level.
If you are a small business or entrepreneur who is utilizing the power of social media, then you know what an amazing tool it is to attract and retain customers and clients. You might be pretty satisfied with the fans you’ve acquired using these platforms, but take a second look and ask yourself, are these relationships everything they can be? Maybe it’s time to take these relationships to the next level.
I know, a lot of you are thinking, “what next level?” My customers have stated they ‘like’ me. I do some nice posts that get commented on every once in a while. “ What more am I looking for in this relationship?”
Well, I agree that your social media outlets are very important, but the problem is that most of your status updates are easily missed, suppressed or ignored. Facebook is only showing your status updates to a fraction of your audience, because it doesn’t want to bother your fans with what you are posting. How much of your audience isn’t even seeing the marketing messages you’re spending so much time creating?! The interaction that you and your customers are having on Facebook is equivalent to sitting in at a crowded table with a bunch of your friends. Only some of what you’re saying is being heard by a fraction of the people at the table.
What I’m talking about is so much more powerful. It’s enjoying a quiet, intimate candle-light dinner with your customer. How do you do this? Email marketing.
An email in a subscriber’s inbox has a greater chance of being read, and more importantly, acted upon. 91% of consumers check their email daily <ExactTarget>, 82% of customers open emails from companies <Litmus>, and 74% of consumers prefer to receive commercial communications via email <Hubspot>. Email marketing has a Return on Investment of 4,300% <SearchEngineJournal>. These statistics tell a fascinating story, but why does email marketing produce such outstanding results?
Table for two – At the busy table, who knows if your intended audience is going to hear what you have to say. Not only do you have to compete with the other distractions at the table, you have no way of knowing if your intended audience is even aware you are saying something! Let’s compare this to an e-mail showing up in your customer’s inbox. You take your customer by the hand, look deep into their eyes, smile and say “hey, there is something I want to tell you…” you lean closer, never breaking your gaze and whisper, “I want to give you 20% off your next shoe purchase at my store.” If this scenario seems a bit silly, let me ask you something, how many times have you been persuaded by marketing sent to your email versus something you read on your Facebook wall? Now ask yourself if it was because you were focused on the message, and not distracted by the pictures of your cousins wedding and the video of your boss doing the ALS Ice Bucket challenge on either side of the offer.
There is more commitment – There are right ways and wrong ways to compile a list of people to email your marketing messages to. One of the best ways to build your list is using the double opt-in process. This is asking subscribers to fill out the signup form first, and then confirming the subscription to your list. Why the extra work? When your customer follows these steps, they’ve established a level of commitment towards this relationship. The people who have done this are obviously interested in hearing from you, and they will be much more receptive and responsive to what you have to say. Not only that, but people will only be able to sign themselves up for the e-mail. You can’t sign your family or friends up for a newsletter that might interest them. Let’s face it, there is nothing worse then being set up with somebody behind your back!
You have a bit of privacy – What if one of your customers has a question or is curious about the details of the offer you’ve provided. This person might not be comfortable with bringing up their question at the crowded table. Not getting their question answer could cause them to just ignore the offer. Email provides a safe place to interact with your business in a more intimate setting. Your customer can respond to you privately, without having to share their thoughts or questions with everybody, and more importantly, you are presented with the perfect opportunity for some one-on-one correspondence.
As you can see, becoming more then just friends with your customers will produce better results, but there are still many things to consider about how to make the relationship work. What is it you have to offer in this relationship? Do you have something interesting to say? Are you finding the right balance between too much and too little correspondence? Don’t get overwhelmed by those details today, relationships take time to build and mistakes will be made, the important thing is to start those relationships.
Later in the week, we will do a 1 minute video on how to get an email list subscription form on your Facebook page via a free email list management tool called MailChimp. This is a super easy technique that requires no technical knowledge and best of all, no web developer! It’s time to put yourself out there, and start asking your customers, “are you ready to be more than just friends?”
And while I have your attention, are you ready to be more then just friends? Sign up below to subscribe to our insider’s email. I’ve got some great content planned, and I don’t want you to miss it.