What's the Best Way to Communicate with Your Customers?
One of the biggest questions that businesses ask is how they can best reach their customers.
While each brand has its own needs and unique audience to consider, there are a few common threads that come with marketing your brand on social media, through email, and with text marketing.
Here is what you should know about these three options and how you can build a dedicated process to communicate with customers whenever you need to.
Social media marketing plays an invaluable role in modern marketing.
Almost half of the entire world population is on at least one social media channel, including 69% of Americans.
This means that you can reach thousands of people who are interested in your brand within your community with just a few posts. However, despite the proliferation of social media in our society, it has its drawbacks.
The main drawback that many business owners don't realize is that they are at the mercy of algorithms.
Algorithms are the way that Facebook decides what to show in a user's feed. Facebook regularly updates its algorithm based on the goals of the company. More ads, more publisher posts, less brand posts, more engagement – these have all been the themes of Facebook algorithm updates at some point. The result is that brands can take a hit and loss their organic social traffic almost overnight.
Even without algorithm changes, connecting with customers on social media can be tricky.
If you're lucky, 10% of followers see your post on Facebook (and even fewer will actually engage with the content). This means that for every 100 customers who say that they are interested in your brand and products, only 10 will get the information they need. The remaining 90% are left behind.
Social media has its place in your marketing and communications strategy. You can reach new people and directly target specific audiences, but no brand should rely on it as their only tool to communicate with customers.
In many cases, email is your best bet to communicate with customers.
In 2018, the average email open rate across all industries was 32%, a number that can increase depending on your brand or field.
Email marketing can be up to three times more effective than social media.
Plus, with this line of communication, you can reach all of your customers. The message goes directly into their inboxes, and it's up to the recipients to decide whether or not they want to engage with your brand.
Email is also effective because of the frequency with which customers check their inboxes.
Almost 90% of Americans check their email inbox at least once per day, with 20% of Americans checking their email more than five times a day. Plus, several email marketing providers have free service levels for small businesses, which makes this communication channel easy and affordable to launch.
Although, what email marketing makes up for in customer engagement, it lacks in new customer acquisition.
According to FTC guidelines, your audience members need to opt into your email marketing messages – and should have the ability to opt out at any time. While brands can promote their email list in-store, online, and through social media, the vast majority of customers that you are connecting with have already bought from you or are familiar with your brand.
This means that your email marketing messages will likely focus on bringing customers deeper into the sales funnel rather than raising awareness for what you do.
With your email marketing campaigns serving as a reliable way to communicate with customers, you can expand a little and test new ways to reach fans and bring them into your business.
You can reach the largest percentage of your customer base with text marketing.
More than 91% of Americans keep their mobile devices within reach at all times, and the average response time to a text message is 90 seconds (compared to 90 minutes for an email).
Text marketing is particularly useful for reaching younger audiences – who prefer to receive text messages over other forms of marketing communication.
For text marketing, you will need to follow the same FTC guidelines as those set for email marketing and you will need to test your customer response. However, you may find that text marketing can be a valuable driver of customers to your store or business, especially on short notice.
So, Which Communication Channel Is Best?
There’s a reason top brands have a diverse marketing mix to reach customers.
There is no one magic channel to reach everyone you need to.
For every customer who diligently checks their email messages, you will have another who only wants to engage with your brand on social media. You need to build a foundation for connecting with your customers and then expand to more creating marketing strategies.
As you send out email newsletters, social media posts, and text messages, see how your customers respond. Which channels drive people to your business, and which channels result in radio silence? You don’t always have to rely on the “best practices” of the experts when you can turn to the opinions of your local customers instead.
The only way to know what is best is to:
- Truly get to know your customers through buyer personas.
- Identify the communication platforms they use most.
- Monitor your campaigns to see where you get the best results.
Determine the Best Way to Communicate With Your Customers
If you are looking to improve your customer communication and grow your direct channels to connect with audiences, reach out to the team at MyArea Network. We specialize in working with businesses to improve their communication channels to reach new leads and existing audiences.
Contact us for a free consultation and let us put you on the path to marketing success.
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