What are businesses really about? Some will say products, while others say profits. But you can’t have either without customers.
Customer engagement has never been more critical than now. 80% of customers say the experiences provided by the company are as important to them as its products and services, and half of them claim that most companies fall short of their expectations for great experiences.
Today, customers expect brands to anticipate their needs and interests and serve them with tailor-made products and services. And it’s not like customers are wanting to board first class with economy budgets; 76% of people are willing to spend more for higher quality experiences.
Mastering customer engagement is tricky, though. You have to figure out your target audience’s pain points, expectations, and preferences. Then use the information to create robust customer engagement strategies.
This guide will cover customer engagement in detail—what it is, why it's important, real-life examples, and key metrics to measure success—and lay out some of the best customer engagement strategies to help you establish a base of loyal customers.
What is Customer Engagement?
According to Gartner, “customer engagement is the process of interacting with customers through varied channels to develop and strengthen our relationship with them.“
The internet is filled with even more definitions of customer engagement, but the gist remains the same: customer engagement is about the interaction between you and your customers. The more engaged your customers are, the longer they’ll be loyal customers. This also means lower churn, more sales, and more signups.
Customer engagement isn’t only about driving profitability (although it is a massive benefit). It’s also about empowering the customer to interact with you across various channels and delighting them with unique, personalized experiences.
It's why businesses are increasingly adopting the customer-centric approach when developing marketing campaigns. They're making customer engagement center stage to build top-of-mind awareness and a stronger emotional bond with customers.
Customer vs. Client vs. Consumer Engagement
The terms customer, client, and consumer are often used interchangeably, but they have some core differences. Let’s review the four key areas of differences to help you understand customer engagement, client engagement, and consumer engagement better.
- Company Type: Companies use different models to pursue short-term customers or long-term clients. For example, B2B companies and marketing agencies rely on a smaller base of long-term clients for revenue, while restaurants and retail stores generate a larger base of transactional customers. Moreover, these clients and customers may not directly consume the products they purchase.
- Relationship Style: Client-centric companies offer personalized services to their individual clients to build long-term relationships. On the other hand, customer-focused companies aim for customer satisfaction, but they don’t necessarily tailor it to individuals’ tastes and preferences. The goal, in either case, is to turn the client or customer into a consumer, who is a direct end-user of the offered goods or service.
- Timeframe: The consumer or customer journey is generally shorter than the client journey. Customer relationships are typically short-term, often involving one-time sale with a retailer or restaurant. Contrarily, client relationships retain professional services for much longer time periods. A consumer can either be a short-term customer or a long-term client. That’s because the term “consumer“ has more to do with whether a person meets their own needs through a transaction than the transaction’s time duration.
- Marketing Strategy: Companies have different marketing strategies depending on whether they want to attract customers or clients. For example, an amusement park would use customer-based metrics to generate multiple new clients daily, while client-based customers have a smaller target market with higher attention. In either case, the primary objective is to make their clients and customers happy consumers.
Understanding the 4 Types of Customer Engagement
Brands today aren’t solely seeking transactions—they also want to build strong, long-term relationships. To do this successfully, leaders and marketers have to understand the various types of customer engagement and how they affect their brands.
Read on to learn what the four key types of customer engagement are and how you can use them.
1. Contextual Engagement
Without context, everything is just noise—even engagement.
Contextual engagement helps marketers understand an individual customer’s behavior towards them, both in real-time and historically, through technology. They then use this information to achieve their goals in context to the brand’s profile and deliver a more successful individual experience.
A classic example of contextual engagement is brands and retailers sending coupons to customers based on previous purchases or an in-store notification, including a special offer based on their purchase history.
2. Emotional Engagement
Despite being the key driver behind engagement and loyalty, marketers often overlook emotions. It’s ironic because humans are emotional creatures, so ensuring contextual engagement can go a long way in reinforcing the emotional value they invest in a brand.
What’s more, except for aspirational brands, the majority of customers’ brand buying decisions stem from other unconscious emotional spaces.
Emotional bonds are typically tied to marketing (messaging, colors, images) or personal experiences and memories. Marketers couldn’t access the more personal aspects of this type of engagement before because there was no way of collecting or understanding data insights.
Luckily, things have changed now. Thanks to consumer management technology, marketers can track millions of data points that paint a crystal-clear picture of an individual’s decision-making process to get a 1:1 understanding at scale.
3. Engagement of Convenience
As the name suggests, engagement of convenience is all about making things more convenient for your customers. Just because it's easy, customers will engage.
You may remember Amazon’s infamous Dash button service that allowed customers to stock specific household products by simply pressing a button. Although the Dash button was discontinued, it did eliminate the need for customers to leave their homes, thereby making their lives more convenient.
Amazon also learned useful information about its customers, such as which discounts triggered them to place an order or how long is the average buying cycle.
To put things into perspective, any type of interaction that increases convenience gives brands a better understanding of each customer’s individual needs, triggers and price points, buying cycles, and more. All this knowledge can be used later to maximize a transaction’s value—contextually, emotionally, and financially—to reinforce a customer's desire to buy.
4. Social Engagement
While all the above types of customer engagement are aligned with a specific individual, social engagement highlights real-time output for brands. It’s this ideology that comes to play when we talk about influencer marketing.
Social media influencers, for example, have more influence over the buying decisions of their followers than any marketer. If an influencer have a good experience with a brand, they can share it on the social media platform(s) they are on, and that, in turn, will influence followers to seek out the experience.
Customer engagement thus goes beyond the actual transaction. It’s heavily dependent on interactions taking place before and after an actual purchase.
When brands understand the different customer engagement types and have the technology to make sense of the available data points, they can create personalized engagement experiences and nurture customer relationships.
Why Ignoring Customer Engagement Is a Huge Business Mistake
Low customer engagement reflects poorly on your business. This could indicate larger issues, including:
- Your brand isn’t reaching its target audience, and if it is, it’s targeting the wrong users
- Your content quality is lacking
- Your product or services aren’t viable
- Your customer service isn’t up to the mark, and you don’t care about your customers
These factors can damage your reputation and stunt your company's growth, resulting in a significant drop in customer lifetime value, employee retention, and conversion rates.
On the other hand, customer engagement initiatives signal that the brand cares, and hence, warrants benefits that will set your brand for long-term success and improve return on investment.
Higher revenue, for example, is every company’s big picture goal. Temkin Group found that companies earning $1 billion annually can earn a staggering $775 million more within three years of “modestly” investing in customer experience improvement measures.
By applying the right customer engagement strategies and tools, you too can::
Improve Customer Relationships
Customer relationships have become harder to maintain in the digital age. Customers have too many options today, which has made their attention span smaller. It also means brands have to take more initiative to build a rapport with their ideal audience.
Regular communication with customers can make a significant difference here.
Customers have questions throughout the customer journey and applying effective customer engagement strategies will allow you to connect with and consider their needs at a deeper level, from initial awareness to the purchase and beyond.
Besides questions, you should also respond to your customers' complaints and compliments with equal enthusiasm. Southwest Airlines is an excellent example here.
The budget airline ranks #7 in Forbes' list of Most Engaged Companies and its dedication to delivering the highest quality of customer service and customer experience has resulted in 51% of Southwest’s customers being highly engaged with company activities.
The fact that the airline serves over 11 million passengers a month proves that engaged customers can positively impact your bottom line.
Attract Potential Leads
Consistent engagement helps you win over customers or, at the very least, create brand awareness and pique interest in your brand and offerings.
Many companies offer incentives and freebies to promote customer retention. While discounts and promotions are effective to attract potential leads, you still need to ensure you’re providing value. For instance, brands that publish relevant content answering their target customer's questions will see a significant rise in their number of users.
Use a data-driven approach to determine the best channel mix and frequency that appeals to your target audience’s needs and interests. As people become more familiar with your brand, they'll eventually start buying your products over your competitors.
Streamline Purchase Cycles
Engagement platforms use AI-driven technology and data to automate repetitive tasks and interactions, allowing you to deliver personalized experiences and convert and retain more leads.
You can anticipate customer needs, create timely custom responses addressing common concerns, and assign roles to streamline workflows. Here’s an example from Spotify, a music streaming platform that curates song recommendations based on users’ listening history:
Also, you get detailed insights into your account and sales activity, making it easier to retarget potential customers and shorten the buying process. With a streamlined purchasing system in place, you have more time to focus on innovation, growth, and other critical tasks to achieve your organizational goals.
Discover Up-Sell Opportunities
Upselling is both time- and cost-saving and helps you earn a profit faster. It becomes even more effortless when you have a loyal and engaged customer base.
In general, it’s easier to sell to a current customer versus a new lead. According to the book Marketing Metrics, the likelihood of selling to an existing customer is 60%-70% as opposed to 5%-20% of a new prospect.
You can use customer data and trends to assess product performance and identify opportunities, such as recommending products purchased by similar buyers or frequently bought together at a later date.
Boost Customer Loyalty and Retention
With an effective engagement strategy in place, you‘ll always know how your customers feel about your product or service, the qualities they value, and areas of improvement to provide a better customer experience.
What upgrades can make the product more user-friendly? Is your customer support team doing a good job? Does your product need a refresh as per the latest industry data and trends?
When you show genuine interest in your customers, they’ll be more likely to buy from you again. So if you want to protect yourself against customer churn and boost brand loyalty, make your customers feel heard and appreciated. Instead of being a company that just offers a product, aim to become the holistic solution to their problem like Nike.
Gartner released a report discussing how Nike is redefining customer loyalty. The brand is going beyond traditional reward programs by using interactive web content, offering perks like customizable shoes and pop-up shops to drive customer engagement.
The end result of Nike‘s customer engagement initiatives? Skyrocketing profits and repeat customers.
What is Customer Engagement Marketing?
Customer engagement marketing (CEM) is a marketing strategy companies use to personalize messaging to move their audience forward in the sales cycle, changing a lead into a customer and nurturing current customers to become more loyal to their brand.
Simply communicating your brand promise isn’t enough anymore. You need to fulfill that promise across all marketing, shopping, and purchasing touchpoints. It’s delivering that personalization element that will make customers engage with your brand.
Why does customer engagement marketing work today? In today’s business environment, customers expect quick and efficient service. You want your brand to be present whenever your customer needs help, but being omnipresent is exhausting, regardless of whether you own a large or small organization.
It's in this situation that CEM works. It takes the pressure off of just one team to deliver exceptional customer service and encompasses the entire customer journey, supported by team members of every involved department.
Examples of Customer Engagement Marketing
You receive a personalized email from your local grocery store owner you purchased from in the past. It invites you to the launch of a new product line next week at the store as you’d expressed interest in a similar product in your feedback form. That’s CEM.
Below, we’ve listed a few more real-life customer engagement marketing examples from companies of different sizes and revenue.
Slack is probably already an integrated part of your everyday work life(SSR has one, too).
The company recognizes the importance of software in its customers' life, and how it’s contributing to the “always-on“ culture. In response, Slack shared this sweet reminder with customers who use the app:
The message immediately brings a smile to your face and shows Slack is attuned to its customers. Not only is it a mindful gesture on the company's part, but it also spurs engagement and interaction.
Similarly, you can also share a customer-centric message in forums or platforms your customers visit to create new engagement opportunities.
Casper is a renowned mattress company that came up with a unique way to gather customer information while engaging with its ideal clients. The company designed a free chatbot, Insomnobot3000, specifically for—you guessed it—insomniacs.
Insomnobot3000 is there for anyone who has trouble falling asleep, especially between 11 PM and 5 AM. It may seem silly, but it’s effective. After the launch of Insomnobot3000, Casper earned over $100 million in sales in 2015.
Casper used the bot to collect its customers' names, emails, and phone numbers and later send promotional offers and deals for its mattresses and other products. The company positioned its products as the perfect solution for the customer’s pain point: insomnia. Genius!
Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams
79% of people say UGC highly impacts their purchasing decisions. But simply posting your social channels isn’t enough—you also need to respond to messages and engage.
America-based Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams has mastered the art of customer engagement on social media platforms. Not only does the company regularly interact with its followers, but also expresses gratitude.
Communicating regularly with their community has helped Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams build a more engaged customer base through social media. Look at how the company uses screenshots of positive tweets from customers on its Instagram profile to boost engagement.
You can also adopt a similar approach. Take user-generated content and amplify its message by sharing it across your own social media channels.
Customer Engagement vs. Customer Service, Customer Success, Customer Satisfaction, and Customer Experience
Equally important to understand customer engagement is to separate it from a few related concepts, namely customer service, customer success, customer satisfaction, and customer experience.
Customer Service vs. Customer Engagement
Customer service is all the help and advice a company provides to customers buying or using its products or services.
Although customer service is classified under customer experience, a single customer service interaction can influence an entire customer experience. Forbes found that 96% of customers will leave you for bad customer service. That’s nearly everyone!
Customer service certainly has a critical role in the customer journey, but it can be pinpointed to a specific department or individual. On the other hand, customer engagement involves actively building, nurturing, and managing customer relationships. It helps retain a customer and makes them return to your brand.
Customer Success vs. Customer Engagement
Customer success describes how the customer engages with your product or service post-sales and identifies ways to optimize that engagement. It tries to attain customer value over time through recurring revenue, subscription renewal and upsells rather than capturing it at a single sale point.
Customer success focuses on the post-sale time frame and strives to help the customers get the most out of a specific product or service. Contrarily, customer engagement starts before the customer purchases the product and attempts to build an overall positive relationship with the customer, leading to improved retention and brand loyalty.
Customer Satisfaction vs. Customer Engagement
Customer satisfaction and customer engagement have overlapping aspects, but they aren’t the same.
A satisfied customer isn’t the same as an engaged customer. They can be a lifelong customer, but they’ll never follow your brand on social media or sign up for your loyalty program. Contrarily, an engaged customer may buy a few products from elsewhere, but they’ll spend hours on your company’s forum or interacting with your posts on Facebook.
Interestingly, customer satisfaction can be a precursor for customer engagement as well as an outcome for it.
Customer Experience vs. Customer Engagement
Customer experience describes everything that happens to a customer when they work with a brand, from seeing ads on social media to visiting the actual flagship store. The key to providing a good customer experience is to think from the customer’s perspective and determine ways to provide the best possible experience across all touchpoints.
On the other hand, customer engagement focuses on the customer’s agency and choice in addition to what each brand brings to them. The customer is the active participant instead of being someone who receives the experience and explores how they react and respond, reaches out to brands, and their relationship with the brand’s marketing efforts.
How to Increase Customer Engagement (11 Best Strategies)
For any successful business, holding on to current customers is as important as bringing in new ones. Luckily, customer engagement can help you achieve both.
Below are some of the best customer engagement strategies to build emotionally engaging relationships with your customers.
1. Deliver Enormous Value to Customers
A Harvard Business Review article covered the importance of obsessing over your customers and not your rivals. When you constantly think about your customer’s welfare, you can build and nurture an army of brand loyalists and advocates, regardless of your industry and niche.
Enterprise has the highest level of customer engagement and satisfaction in the car rental market.
It goes the extra mile to address customer questions and complaints and offers to pick up customers and bring them to the rental office. A loyalty program gives drivers bonus points on qualifying rental dollars and free car upgrades.
These incentives and perks work well to appeal to Enterprise’s target market, helping it engage with customers and establish loyalty.
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is also passionate about his customers’ welfare. He pays attention to customer questions, listens to their problems, and tries to deliver service that makes the lives of Amazon users easier.
"If there's one reason we have done better than our peers in the internet space over the last six years, it is because we have focused like a laser on customer experience."
Easy to see why Amazon is the #1 online shopping platform in the U.S. and even the world.
Similarly, if you focus on your customer's problems and the obstacles they face, you'll understand how your products and services can be useful to them.
- Create your ideal customer profile to know customer pain points and preferences
- Know your product’s USP and how it can solve those pain points and obstacles
- Pay attention to what your customers say and promptly address issues
2. Deliver Personalized Customer Experiences
The modern customer wants personalized experiences as they progress from brand awareness to closing and expect brands to understand their unique needs and expectations. They want you to be that thoughtful coworker who brings you your favorite chocolate croissant when you’re having a tough day.
Unfortunately, a majority of companies are falling short of these expectations. But this also means there’s a solid opportunity for you to strike.
Aim to deliver the best possible customer onboarding experience you can. You can also offer live demos and in-depth training, and continuously check in with your customers post-sale to ensure they’re enjoying the experience.
Another winning tactic is to provide personalized product recommendations to elevate their experience like Amazon.
Ask your customers what they want, and use the collected information to deliver 1:1 experiences. You can use behavioral data to interact uniquely with your customers and delight them. Analyzing purchase or browsing history also works.
Next, implement customer feedback to improve your product’s usability. Customer reviews, both good and bad, can give you useful insights into your products that can help you reengage your customers.
- Give your customers tailored recommendations
- Provide in-depth training and live demos to ensure a smooth onboarding
- Reach out to dissatisfied customers and address their concerns
3. Implement an Omnichannel Customer Engagement Strategy
When you implement an omnichannel customer engagement strategy, you give your customers the choice to decide where or which channel they want to engage with you. This allows you to show a unified personalized message representing your brand while ensuring a seamless customer experience across multiple channels.
Here’s a quick step-by-step rundown to implement an omnichannel customer experience strategy:
- Find out which channels your customers are using
- Map out your customer journey from one channel to another; eliminate any gaps in your strategy
- Match your content with the appropriate channel. For instance, short texts do better on Twitter and LinkedIn, while Facebook and Instagram are more image-friendly. If you want to publish longer text-based content, send out email newsletters
- Provide cross-channel customer engagement and support, and make sure the quality of service is the same across all channels
Implementing the above steps will help you deliver a seamless, consistent, and personal experience across your channels, resulting in higher customer engagement.
Timberland has implemented Near Field Communication (NFC) technology that helps it combine the convenience of online with in-person customer experience.
When customers enter a Timberland store, they’re given a tablet that allows them to interact with NFC-enabled products. On tapping the products, they see instant information about the items on the tablet, along with personalized product recommendations.
What’s more, Timberland shoppers can use the tablets to create wishlists that they can email to themselves and then shop the products from home.
4. Leverage Social Media as a Customer Engagement Tool
Here’s the deal: social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter are some of the best customer engagement tools you can get your hands on.
Do you think these billions of people will remember your brand if you only connect with them on their respective platforms? They won’t.
When people follow you on Twitter or like your Facebook page, it's because they’re interested in what you have to offer. These people have problems and think your product can be a potential solution.
You can create groups, host contests, run campaigns, among other tactics, to engage with your social media followers. For example, responding to comments on your social media posts is an excellent tactic to boost engagement. Huda Beauty takes the initiative to respond to most of its comments, making the beauty company's followers feel heard.
Through customer engagement, you can direct them to your product and eventually retain them in the long run.
- Be active on your social media platforms
- Respond to user comments, build community groups, and run contests
- Listen to what your customers are saying on social media, and implement feedback
5. Deliver a Clear, Concise Brand Message
Your customers are more likely to engage with your brand when your message is easy to understand, retain, and read. Regardless of industry, keep your business communications actionable and have CTAs that clearly explain what you want the reader to do.
Here are examples of clear and actionable language you can use:
- Evoke interest by telling people about their account: “Since you last visited our website, seven of your friends have signed up for X product.”
- Describe upgrades and improvements made to your product: “X product is now 20% faster.“
- Offer an incentive to attract customers: “Sign up for our yearly subscription, and get 25% off on your total bill.“
Another important factor here is to have a consistent voice and tone. Mailchimp has published a style guide that its employees use to maintain consistent content and communications across all channels:
- Make your brand message short and clear
- Adopt a personal tone for your messaging
- Have a consistent voice across all communication channels
6. Use a CRM to Build Your Customer Engagement Campaigns
Strong customer relationships are what make successful brands stand out. Solely focusing on acquisition and neglecting existing customers will never get you ahead in the race.
But engaging with customers across all customer engagement platforms is challenging. Luckily, managing customer relationships is easier with an advanced CRM (Customer Relationship Management) solution.
Here are a few ways in which you can amplify customer engagement using a CRM:
- Manage a comprehensive database of customer interactions across emails, social media, phone calls, and other platforms at a commonplace
- Get access to AI-based analytics to optimize your customer engagement campaigns
- Track customer conversations and respond promptly to customer complaints
- Create targeted customer lists based on factors like gender, demographics, and age to hold personalized interactions
7. Offer Helpful and Relevant (Gamified) Content
Customer engagement is also about helping your customers improve their experience, and what better way to do this than sharing relevant information that will help use your product better? This is particularly important when your customer success is highly connected to the product or service you provide.
Talk to your customers and understand their challenges and needs. Then create and offer content—articles, videos, user guides, e-books, and skill training—addressing those challenges and needs.
Try to share content and knowledge your customers will find relevant and helpful. In turn, this will help you maintain or increase customer engagement and foster a healthy, long-lasting relationship with them.
You can also use gamified content to build a positive association with your customers. When customers play and win, they’re more likely to engage and remember your brand.
- Talk to customers to understand their experience with your product
- Publish helpful and relevant content addressing common pain points and challenges
- Offer a variety of content—text, audio, and video—to cater to all choices
8. Partner Up With Influencers
With influencers, you can create the right buzz for your company.
How? For starters, they expose you to a whole set of (loyal) audience, enabling you to expand your brand‘s reach like never before. Social media users learn more about your brand, your story, and the product and services you provide.
Influencer marketing also helps your brand build trust and show authority. When a social media personality, an industry expert, or a celebrity shares content educating their audience about the advantages of using your product, it creates a sense of instant credibility for your brand.
For example, JBL sent over their latest Giannis X JBL limited edition kit to popular YouTuber Jacques Slade, who put up a YouTube video reviewing it. More than 40k people listened to Slade praising the collab.
This kind of endorsement also drives purchase decisions, helping you grow your sales figures and connect with a deeply engaged audience.
9. Invest in Proactive Customer Support
Customers are growing more impatient by the day. In fact, 83% of customers expect immediate engagement when they contact a company.
A more proactive approach towards customer support is the need of the hour. You must be ready 24/7 to address your customers' concerns, and while this may have been impossible before, it isn’t now.
AI-based solutions such as chatbots and live chat can help provide round-the-clock support to customers. Moreover, they also enhance the quality of your support, letting you reduce customer churn rates and increase profits.
- Create a two-way dialogue with customers in real-time, 24/7
- Invest in chatbots and live chat facilities
- Ensure the customer information provided is accurate and easy to implement
10. Involve Customers in Social Causes
People are likely to buy more from brands that make them feel good about the money they spend. Most of them also share the good they’re investing in with their network.
Companies that launched marketing campaigns actively involving customers in social causes saw a tremendous boost in customer engagement. Recently, The Body Shop launched their #TimeToCare campaign to thank healthcare workers for their dedication during the pandemic. The company donated cleansing supplies like body and hand soap to encourage health, wellness, and kindness.
Over time, other people from its community also started using the hashtag to post valuable content about self-care and self-love.
- Choose a social cause that aligns with your brand‘s core values
- Regularly post and share content promoting the cause
- Use hashtags to spread the word faster
11. Reward Customer Engagement
The good thing about having loyal customers is you don’t always have to encourage engagement—they’ll sing your praises on their own. And this deserves a reward.
What kind of or what can you offer and engage customers? Here are a few ideas:
- Publicly recognize achievements on your social media channels and tag customers
- Create badges for engaged customers
- Offer special discounts, exclusive access to new product launches, and company swag
- Honor them with certificates and prizes
- Sponsor trips, events, or meals
Ensure your rewards program matches your product and your customer goals. If you have any questions about what your customers value the most, go ahead and ask them!
Southwest Airlines finds people online who post about their delightful flight experience and sends them little tokens, thanking them for their support. Here’s a Southwest user showing off their present from “the best airline in the world:"
You don’t have to apply every customer engagement strategy you read, but you have to be open to experimenting with a few to find the right fit. If your customer engagement strategy is effective, it'll impact your KPIs and your bottom line positively.
Customer Engagement Examples (Mini Case Studies)
While we’ve covered all kinds of examples till now, we want to deep dive into how good and bad customer engagement affects your business’s bottom line. Let’s take a look.
Example of Effective Customer Engagement Strategy: Chargebee
Chargebee is an automated subscription billing software that integrates with leading payment gateways. It allows businesses to automate recurring billing and payment collection to streamline subscription and invoice management.
The company's blog comprehensively covers SaaS-related news, trends, and stories, as well as keeps users up-to-date with the latest offerings and updates from Chargebee. Wanting to boost traffic and engagement to its blog, Chargebee decided to try push notifications.
In just three months, Chargebee got 2000 blog visitors to subscribe to push notifications from their website, with an average subscription rate of 30 per day. The best click rate they received from the first campaign was 17.11%, and the notification was delivered to 533 subscribers, with 93 people clicking on it, and the average session duration was 2.5 minutes.
With time, Chargebee also started timing its notifications and sending subsequent reminders, which eventually led to a 200% increase in click rate and subscriptions per day.
Example of Bad Customer Engagement Strategy: Virgin Media
Virgin Media is a British telecommunications company that provides television, telephone, and internet services in the United Kingdom. In the company‘s words, they want to use their network, name, and knowledge “to help people discover the power of digital technology and take brilliant digital ideas to wherever they need it most.“
Unfortunately, not many people agree.
Over the years, the company has steadily created a name for itself as the worst company in terms of customer service and customer engagement. The company has 3.4 million customers, which when compared to its rivals (Verizon‘s 94 million and Comcast’s 31 million) is measly, and is still falling short of customer expectations.
Here are a few tweets describing what Virgin Media users think about the company:
Virgin Media also has its own hate account (!) on Twitter:
13 Customer Engagement Statistics You Need to Know
In this section, we've listed 13 interesting customer engagement statistics to help you devise your customer engagement campaign for 2022.
- Customer engagement is influenced by price (81%), quality (80%), and convenience (55%).
- 41% of consumers, and almost half of Millennials (47%), are willing to pay as much as 20% more for an impressive customer experience. But only 15% of consumers expect brands to deliver personalized interactions based on their tastes and preferences.
- 78% of customers prefer omnichannel customer engagement.
- 49% of customers made impulse purchases after an excellent, customized personal experience with a brand.
- By 2023, over 40% of all customer interactions will be automated through AI and machine learning, which is good as 67% of customers prefer self-service over speaking to a live agent.
- 54% of the customers think companies need to improve how they engage with their customers.
- 39% of companies don’t ask customers for feedback about their interactions.
- 30% of lapsed app users say they would start using the app again if offered a discount, and 61% of customers believe surprise gifts and offers are the best customer engagement tactics.
- 42% of people, especially Gen Z (58%) and Millennials (56%) are more likely to buy from a company that offers novel ways to experience its products and services.
- 52% of customers are less likely to engage with the company because of a bad mobile experience.
How to Measure the Success of Your Customer Engagement Strategy
Admittedly, there’s no absolute formula to calculate customer engagement, but you can measure your brand’s customer engagement levels by focusing on a few marketing KPIs.
Net Promoter Score (NPS)
NPS measures customer loyalty and how likely customers are to recommend your brand to someone they know. You can collect this data by regularly serving your customers, asking them to rate and experience your brand on a numerical scale: “On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely are you to recommend us to a friend?“
Average Time Spent on Site/Page
Average time spent on site or page is one of the more reliable on-site metrics to measure customer engagement. If you can capture your visitors' attention and interest successfully, they’ll stick around on your side for longer and explore what else you have to offer, thereby increasing engagement.
Purchase Frequency or Renewal Rate
If your customers are actively engaged with your business across all platforms, your brand will be the first name on their minds whenever they need to make a purchase. In fact, you can also drive some impulse purchases by sharing ongoing deals and offers. So if you have a good percentage of repeat purchases, you have a highly engaged customer base.
Word-of-Mouth or Customer Referrals
When your customers are engaged, it’s easier for your business to convert more of them to brand loyalists and advocates. And since only satisfied and well-engaged customers will recommend your products or services to others, you can determine how effective your customer engagement strategy is by reviewing customer referrals.
Repeat Visit Frequency
Well-engaged customers look forward to new experiences your brand has to offer, and hence, don’t mind spending time visiting your website or app every once in a while. You might also get traffic to your website or app from your social media posts, post notifications, or emails. Therefore, if there are high visit frequencies of customers on your website/app, you probably have an effective customer engagement strategy.
Average Order Value (AOV)
The AOV metric indicates the average amount customers spend when they purchase or sign up for a service. It signifies how much customers generally spend when shopping on your website, so the higher this metric is, the more repeat customers are returning to your website. If you’re retaining more customers, your engagement efforts are obviously working.
Social Media Interaction
Comments, likes, tweets, retweets, mentions, shares, tags, video views, and saves are how customers interact with your social media platforms. If you want to understand how users are interacting with your social media handles and whether they’re engaged, just look at these fun metrics—the higher the total number of interactions, the more engaged your customer base.
Open and Click-Through Rates
For communication channels (email, Facebook Messenger, push notifications), the open rate is the percentage of unique open received and the click-through rate is the percentage of recipients who clicked on a CTA in your email. Both metrics indicate how well your audience is responding to your message and whether they’re interested to learn more about what you have to offer, and therefore, are directly proportional to how engaged your customers are with your brand.
Customer engagement is about adding value to your customer's experience, which eventually builds a strong emotional connection that results in repeat business and referrals.
Applying the right customer engagement strategies, embracing emerging technologies, and constantly measuring efforts will help you set the groundwork to build long-lasting relationships with your current and new customers.