What Would Your Audience Tell You If You Asked?
Here’s a hint: they are probably already telling you. Customers value a two-way street for audience communication. This practice opens a conversation and people like to know they are heard. Besides the main point of understanding and relating to your customers, effective digital communication can:
- Increase the awareness of your brand, because it requires you to be active and available on multiple platforms.
- Naturally create content and activity on your social media platforms. The main point of social media is communication, so it’s natural to use it to talk with your audience instead of at them.
- Give you more opportunities to promote your unique value and brand personality to your target market.
Listening to your audience is a great way to find and keep loyal customers. It is also an unfortunate opportunity to lose that relationship if you aren’t present or communicative.
The communication you have
The beauty of the sentiment analysis
Sentiment Analysis: the process of identifying and categorizing opinions expressed in a piece of text, especially to determine whether the writer’s attitude towards a particular topic, product, etc. is positive, negative, or neutral.
A sentiment analysis may sound time-consuming, and depending on the size of your company, it can be. But if you don’t tackle your current customer messages with a conscious strategy, chances are you will miss some valuable opportunities to improve your product or operations. A sentiment analysis is meant to help you find themes, patterns, repetitive grievances, and popular opinions from your audience. Grouping the topic and sentiment behind your reviews and contact forms
Review sites: yelp, trip advisor, etc.
It doesn’t matter whether your company is found on the big review giants like TripAdvisor or Yelp, or if it’s found on small niche review websites. There is great information to find in those reviews! Good reviews can validate your unique value and inform what product strengths you should be promoting better on your site. Bad reviews can uncover areas for improvement and places where your product or service may be lacking.
Contact forms on the website
These individuals care so much about getting this information they are reaching out to you directly. If you are communicative and punctual with these inquirers, it can be the tipping point from warm lead to a full-blown customer. Once again, use a sentiment analysis to break down all of your historical contact forms to find actionable insights. If you look at your contact forms as a whole instead of just one-by-one, it can present some interesting patterns in what your consumers want to know. Chances are, you have one question that is sent time and time again – that is a great actionable insight to make the answer very easily found on your site. You may also see multiple contact forms requesting a specific functionality or aspect of your product or service you don’t offer – this audience communication could greatly improve your value to the consumer!
Use your data to your advantage – those numbers and metrics are hiding actionable insights for your website content and message. For example, take a product page that has a very high bounce rate and little to no conversions. The value of this product is either not well-explained in the page, or the product is not valuable to your audience. Pages with abnormally low or high engagement and performance is a type of audience communication and these metrics are lessons to learn from.
The conversation you can start
Call tracking can seem like magic when we are just exiting a world of post-it note phone messages. When multiple people are answering the phone, audience communication gaps can hide any possible trends in call topics. Call tracking software can identify the topic or question of each call that comes in and categorize these conversations for easy pattern-finding. They can also track how the caller reached your number. This is crucial information for understanding what information needs to be more obvious on your site, as well as logistical complaints that may be surfacing more than they should.
Tip: Use call-tracking software to determine new keywords to target in your Google ads. This strategy makes sure your brand and contact info are present on the keywords and topics your audience wants to talk about!
Reach out to trusted clients or customers to check in and make sure your current relationship status is in good standing. This can open an honest line of communication with your most important clients, as well as instill a sense of true importance in your loyal customers. To Maximize engagement with this strategy, try:
- Personalizing each email, including a direct email to a team member, and using a conversational tone. This will make it obvious you are taking the time and energy to reach out to specific people, and you hope to receive a response.
- Include a simple method for them to answer the questions in a time-efficient fashion. Time is of the essence, so a fast loading, efficient survey platform would do the trick. This way you get all the responses to the priority topics without the customer running out of time or patience. This could be a paid platform like SurveyMonkey or a free platform like Google Forms.
Survey/polls/discussions on social media
While this message may have lower engagement, it will also have a much larger reach. To maximize engagement and communication on social media, try a few tactics:
- Consider offering an incentive to boost engagement. The incentive doesn’t have to cost your company money, but make sure it offers direct value to your target market. This could be an exclusive download, a shoutout offer, contest entrance, or a future discount.
- Make your Call To Action simple enough to not take more than a few seconds of your viewer’s time. The average viewer won’t fill out a full survey, but they may answer a yes/no poll.
What to do with the audience communication
Increase the value of the FAQ page on your website
FAQ pages are one of the most important pages potential customers visit to learn more about your brand and product. What you include on this page is the digital version of a handshake and introduction, and we all know first impressions matter. Contact form questions are the absolute best way to prioritize your FAQ page. Another win? It will eventually cut down on the number of contact forms you have to respond to.
Find future product offerings or functionalities
Your customers are smart, creative, and want the best out of your company. Listen to the product functionality requests that frequently roll in, and scope them. Discuss the product functionality with trusted frequent users. Prioritize the requests, and ultimately improve your overall product with these requests.
Use communication opportunities to establish trust, satisfaction, and eventually brand loyalty.
Using communication opportunities means responding to good and bad reviews, any shoutouts on social media, and of course all website contact forms. Each of these are opportunities to win over your target market and create a customer with a lifetime value on a small or large scale. Use this time to promote your brand values and personality, which will eventually improve your brand reputation long-term.
Need help acting on your audience’s messages? Learn more about Dowitcher Designs!