In my last blog How To Build Reach Inbound Marketing Style For Lead Generation I shared ways to use social media to build your reach, using inbound marketing, permission based tactics.
In today’s article Im going to share how you can engage with your audience so it's meaningful for both of you.
Engagement is part of the lead nurturing process so the purpose should be to:
Build trust and rapport
Encourage social sharing
Maintain continued awareness, so you’re top of mind
Make sure you understand your prospects and customers well. Whether your market is B2B or B2C you are still marketing to people so take the time to understand who they are.
Think outside the typical buyer persona box. Are they interested in sports or politics? Do they travel a lot? Where do they vacation? What are they passionate about, beliefs, values etc… If you don’t know the answers to these questions maybe this is where you start with your engagement – ask the very questions you would like to know the answers to, to better understand your audience.
To engage with your prospects think about questions that they would be interested in answering, topics they would be interested in discussing.
Your engagement should be one on one, personal. Put a face and name behind the questions. People are more inclined to engage in a conversation with Stacie from The Inbound Marketing Company rather than a company with no personal identity.
Ask closed-ended questions: Do you prefer summer or winter?
Ask open-ended questions: Which is your favorite season and why?
Share a news article with your thoughts and invite others to share their opinions; this could be something as serious as politics or the economy, or something light hearted like Hollywood gossip – it really depends who your audience is.
Start a “charity day”. Most people have a charity that they support, invite your network to share and promote their charity or cause with the group on a designated day.
In the Spotlight - come up with a fun a creative way to reward a loyal "fan" by giving them a free plug on your FB wall, and write about them in an email and blog.
Encourage posting of pictures and videos from your connections on your Facebook wall by asking them to post images of them showing problems like a leaking pipe - if you're a plumber, consuming your product if you're a restaurant or wearing your clothes if you're a clothing boutique. This would also make for great blog articles and interesting emails.
Think about when you attend a networking event do you immediately start pushing your own product on everyone you meet? Or do you ask questions to get to know them better? Mostly these questions are general interest to learn more about the person, to find some common ground on which you can start to build a relationship and find good reason to contact them again.
People prefer to buy from people they like or from someone that their friends like? This also carries into friends of friends – hence the value of social sharing.
Coming up with ideas to engage in meaningful ways is difficult, if you have any ideas you’d like to share with our readers please include them in the comments section below. ~Thank you.