Doing Engagement the Right Way
Posted: Oct 21 2015 / Richard Bairstow / We are Underground
Are you hiding from your customers?
Have you ever sat back and realised that you are spending more time on running operations for your shop than engaging with your customers?
Are you hiding from them?
It's really too easy to fall into the digital marketer's trap of relying too much on analytics, researching which social posting tool is the best or has the most functions and so on.
You feel like you are winning and every web service that wants your money will verify that for you.
Spend time with your customers
Realistically, unless you are devoting at least 50% of your working day towards engaging with your customer base or showing your wares to people who might become new customers, you are in the rat-run of 'doing the right thing for appearances sake'. You are relying on automated services that can certainly pull data like a pro, but don't have the human touch.
Not to get too Zen about this, but one thing we have to remember when getting caught up in the minutia of our working day is that the path of least resistance is usually the best and most efficient.
There are many tools for automated Social Posting. They all have their strengths, but they also take some of the personality out of the equation.
Time saving yes. Personal? No.
Engaging with Engagement
We need to remember that Social Networks are about the closest you can get to conversing with your customers and a wider community in the truest sense. We've all heard this before and we nod sagely when it gets brought up, but do we really know what it means?
It means that you can have that easy conversation. That's what every social marketing seminar was ever about, but we forget and words like 'engagement' just become a data point and a buzz word to throw into a meeting to sound good.
The path of least resistance here in terms of reaching customers is simply asking how everyone is today? How was your weekend? These are little ice-breakers that we use every day. This is called 'engaging'.
Then we progress to; 'Hey, do you like these jeans?' or 'What is it with you guys buying all these Badger T-Shirts? Is there something we are missing?'
If somebody walked into your bricks and mortar shop, would you thrust robotic marketing messages at them or ask them if they are OK or need assistance?
Your Local Barber Is Your Guru
You know who is really good at engaging with their customers? Your local hairdresser or barber, that's who. They have the whole social interaction thing down to a fine art. Next time you get your hair cut, or your nails done, listen and see how they do it. It should be effortless.
Let your daily activity flow like water. Where it meets resistance, change direction or rise above. Where a conversation meets a dead end, start a new one.
Always be showing your customers new things, or appropriate things. Keep it simple and turn it into a discussion.
Honestly, unless you are a big brand that needs a manager or two to service your community, it's going to be a case of throwing things into the wild and seeing little or no response. This is not a reason to give up and go back to faceless automation, hoping that a post here and there causes a conversion or two. It might but it doesn't create a foundation or a sense of community.
Here to help
Running your own shop can be tough, we know that. We are here to help you because like many Shopify users (we imagine that's why your here) we tend to be solitary shop owners or work in small teams.
Yes we build amazing Shopify Themes, It's true, but we also know how your shop works, the best apps to use for your needs and how to market your shop effectively. Keep in touch and we will help you on your way.
Richard Bairstow is the founder and CEO of We are Underground and is recognised as a leading authority in the Shopify Theme marketplace with 5 of the best selling published themes within the Shopify theme store and over 20,000 active Shopify customers.