With more consumers making purchases online versus visiting brick-and-mortar store locations, you need to use digital marketing to reach your audience. When investing in a digital marketing strategy, the risk you take is losing the personal appeal of your business.
When communicating with your audience online, it's challenging to emulate the warm and fuzzy connection that comes from person-to-person interactions. However, notice that we said challenging, not impossible.
Here are several ways that you can get personal with your digital marketing strategy and build a base of loyal followers:
1. Take the time to get to know your customers.
You can't get personal with someone unless you really know them, right? Carefully research your customer demographics, from their age and gender to their income level and occupation. Find out what interests them and motivates them to take action. Hosting a customer event or sponsored gathering will give you the opportunity to get to meet your customer base face-to-face and really get to know them. Use all of this information to write detailed buyer personas for the customers that you want to target with your marketing efforts. The better you know and understand your customers, the more personally appealing your online marketing efforts will be.
2. Give your brand an online voice, literally.
To diversify the content you serve your audience, try creating a podcast or make a video to communicate your message. When your customers can see a face behind your business or hear your voice, you'll be much more effective at humanizing your brand. They won't be doing business with just any company--they're doing business with you, an actual person with a passion for what you do.
3. Engage in real-time social media conversations.
Social media provides your business with a unique opportunity to engage with your customers online in real-time. Instead of just publishing content on social media and leaving it, think of social media as an interaction platform. When planning content to publish on social media, consider how it will spark engagement with your audience and how you'll jump in these online conversations.
4. Recognize your customers.
Customers love a shout out online. Find opportunities to thank customers for retweets, show public appreciation for your fans, and direct your marketing messages to your collective group or "online tribe." Your online followers want to be regarded as real people, not just transactions.
5. Use emotion.
Emotion is one of the most powerful ways to build a connection with someone. As humans, we're emotional creatures, and we often base our purchasing decisions on emotions. Avoid the temptation to create your digital marketing strategy using cold, hard data and instead consider ways to trigger emotion with your audience. Some effective ways to infuse emotion into your online marketing strategy include storytelling, education, excitement, and adventure. Make sure to connect the right kind of emotions to your brand as people will remember the way that your business made them feel.
6. Ask for their feedback.
If you want to enhance your online marketing strategy to better connect with your audience, why not ask them directly how you can provide them with more value? Resources like social media and email make it easy to poll your audience about the types of content they want to see from your business and the ways that you can improve your strategy to better connect with your customers. Plus, asking customers for their feedback opens up the conversation and gives the impression that there is a human element to your business.
If done right, digital marketing gives your business an enormous advantage as it provides you with the ability to connect with your customers on both a personal and individual level. We encourage you to use the tactics outlined above to take down the digital facade of your business and start connecting with customers in more authentic ways.