Introduction

            If asked what your sellers need to sell, you may answer with a few different things. A product, a quote, or even a call script. But you could argue that the most important thing in a seller’s efforts is the customer. Without a customer, what is the point of the seller? You cannot run an effective sales team without considering and fully understanding who your customers are. This is where having a customer engagement strategy is key. Without one, not only are you setting your sellers up for failure, but you’re forgetting about the most important part of sales, your customers.

What is Customer Engagement

            Customer engagement deals with how you interact with your customers. As a sales leader, a big part of your job comes after the deal is done. Whether obvious or not, you must actively try to continue a relationship with your customers even after they have closed a deal. Customer engagement is all the things that come after a sale and help create an environment that will help your relationship with a customer stay a positive one. You must make them feel valued, supported, and in the loop.

            You can create this environment through a variety of different avenues. It’s all about what you can do to keep them happy. Everything leading up to closing a deal is just the tip of the iceberg in your relationship with a customer, so you must make sure to put effort into everything that comes after that. You must make them feel valued and important so they will stay loyal to you and not leave for a competitor. Also, you want to make sure they are supported with great customer service, so they feel like you care about how they are doing.

What is a Customer Engagement Strategy?

            A customer engagement strategy deals with the different things you implement to create this experience for customers. First, you must come up with a plan on how often you’re going to interact with your customers. Whether those are weekly, bi-weekly, or even monthly emails, there should be some consistent messaging going out to them. Next, you could look into what content would be great to push out to them. Are there consistent questions that many customers ask? If so, you could proactively send an email out addressing it if you know the question is coming. Another thing to consider is how you can enable them to have success after closing the deal. Whether that involves customer support, routine check-ins, or other types of touchpoints, you must make sure your customers feel as though they are having success with your product or service.

Why is Customer Engagement Important?

            Customer engagement is important for the couple of reasons just mentioned. A happy and valued customer is less likely to leave for a competitor and may be open to upselling. This is your chance to make your company stand out over competitors. So, it’s important that once you can separate yourself from the crowd, you don’t lose that customer. If a competitor has better customer support, and they do a better job of making a customer feel valued, do you think they’re going to leave? Well, you can mitigate this by doing it yourself. This is where you must stand head and shoulders above other customer experiences with your competitors and show your customers that you not only appreciate the business you do with them but want to actively keep it going. On top of this, having a loyal, recurring customer is far more valuable and cost-effective than having to search for new prospects all the time.

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Customer Engagement Best Practices

            There are various tools and methods that can be used to have a great customer engagement strategy. All of them however revolve around communication. Imagine you’re the customer. You just went through a big decision to buy a new product, you researched different options, picked one you liked, spent hours upon hours working with a seller, then boom. Nothing. You closed the deal, have a new product to figure out, and never hear back from the seller again.

            This is unacceptable in today’s world. Nowadays, there are certain forms of communication that are necessities between customers and sellers. Some examples could include listening to customer feedback on how to improve the product, offering them new deals and products as they arise, taking them out to different events or dinners, or even a simple consistent check-in to make sure their experience with the product is still going smoothly. I know on the surface that may seem overwhelming, but these are the things that will make a customer feel valued and want to keep working with your company.

Customer Engagement with a Sales Engagement Platform

            One of the tools used to help with customer engagement is a sales engagement platform. A sales engagement platform comes into play even after prospects become customers. One of these platforms can help in a multitude of ways. For example, a sales engagement platform can help your sellers keep consistent touchpoints with customers by adding members to a plan. It can also create messaging that is both personalized and large-scale. For example, if a seller had a list of 50 customers they want to keep in contact with, they could be added to a plan that reminds them to follow-up monthly, or even send an automated email out. This email will come from a pre-built template with custom fields that will not only put time back into your seller’s day but will help your company stay at the top of the customer's mind. This process is made even better when your sales engagement platform aligns with Salesforce, like Salesvue, allowing for customer data to be used easier and more powerfully.

Summary

            A lack of engagement will turn a customer away as soon as they feel like they’re not being valued by the company. However, by aligning your messaging and staying consistent with your engagement, you can be sure to give your customers a great experience. Not only will this help draw them in, but it will also help them be more open to your sellers, hopefully allowing them to close more deals.

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