The numbers and trends related to how customers interact with a business and vice-versa are incredibly important to the success of modern commerce. This is because marketplaces are crowded in just about every possible industry, meaning that getting noticed can seem more like an art form than something that can actually be quantified.
However, there are a number of proven ways to get customers on board with a tech company.
It's safe to presume that the primary audience for the technology market is generally tech-savvy by default, so reaching them will almost definitely involve the internet’s various social media channels, email, and streaming networks. However, it’s not enough just to catch consumers’ collective eyes.
The concept of engagement, for example, by creating an emotional connection and/or getting them involved somehow, is retail’s golden egg. US polling company Gallup indicates that customers who are “fully engaged” with an electronics business are likely to spend 29% more money.
Engagement takes different forms in different areas of commerce. In gaming, for example, fostering engagement generally requires player competition over leaderboards or even how much money they can spend, with PC storefront Steam often game-ifying their semi-regular sales.
However, other aspects of the gaming industry turn to methods such as themed slot tournaments, as touted by the bingo company Buzz Bingo, which creates player engagement by producing an incentive for players to stay and get involved beyond the standard bingo experience.
Within the context of a tech company, it could be worth drawing upon the aforementioned examples in order to incentivize customers and employees. This could be in the form of an online raffle or a scheme to have people reach out on social media in order to demonstrate their use of a product sold by the tech company.
This form of advertisement, a customer's testimony, is both beneficial for drawing in new customers but also for rewarding loyalty as the tech company could then choose to use this customer as their poster figure, essentially a bridge between them and the general public.
Many of the ways to interact with customers are simple ones, yet these tricks are often overlooked. For example, an active social media presence and a responsive customer service desk can produce significant word-of-mouth potential.
Just look at fast-food brand Wendy’s, whose often scathing Twitter comments have become part of internet legend. Then, consider Virgin Media, whose UK operation is rated so poorly it made it into the newspapers.
For a small business or a start-up, failing to offer good service can be a critical problem, especially as most shoppers don’t give feedback unless they’re annoyed. This has a nasty way of overwhelming the scant few positive reviews that keep customers coming back.
Making a brand relatable – even ‘human’ – and encouraging conversation is, therefore, a useful tactic for squeezing feedback out of existing customers and earning the forgiveness of chagrined ones.
Finally, retention is the key to maintaining revenue. Attracting a new customer is up to five times more expensive for a business than keeping an existing one. This is why things like aggressive or fast expansion tend to be dangerous ventures, as each new outpost starts with nothing.
Of course, retention is dependent on customer engagement and the presence of an emotional attachment to a brand, so it’s impossible to discuss or implement retention in isolation. It’s not so much a plan as an outcome.
Overall, customer engagement and better retention skills can help preserve a business even through difficult periods. It’s a difficult balance to get right, though, as Wendy’s trademark “roasts” and arguments with other brands could quite easily have come across as abusive or insensitive with a less delicate hand.