While the focus right now is on the upcoming Presidential election, you’ve got your own campaign to work on: winning over your customers. Elections happen every day when people choose to buy from you … or your competitor. Use these tips to ensure that you’re the candidate of choice.
Tip 1: Know What the People Want
Every good political candidate knows how to pull the heartstrings of the people. Gun control? Education? Gay rights? All topics that resonate with a given political candidate’s audience.
What about you? Do you know what your audience cares about? Spend some time finding out, then create content that resonates. Blog articles, videos, emails, and social media posts that deal with these subjects are more likely to be shared and discussed if they are on topics that your audience cares about.
Tip 2: Kiss Some Babies, Shake Some Hands
Just like a Presidential candidate, you need to be accessible to your customers, not some figurehead or faceless company. You may not literally need to kiss babies; instead you should respond to all social media mentions, comment on blog posts about your brand, and otherwise connect with people trying to get your attention.
Remember the relationship aspect of marketing: you’re having a dialogue with people, not a one-way message, so make sure you’re available to do that in a meaningful way.
Tip 3: Be Human
When President Obama appeared on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, he became a person, not the President. We need to relate to our leaders and to companies, so if you’re no more than a logo to your audience, you’ve got some work to do in this regard.
Humanize your social updates. They shouldn’t sound like a robot wrote them. If more than one person manages your social media, put that person’s name after the update. Use photos of your staff in your marketing so that people can put faces to your brand name. Create videos interviewing team members, or to relay a message from your company’s CEO. This creates a connection between your brand and your audience.
Tip 4: Solicit the Vote
Sometimes you have to ask for support. That might not require people heading to the polls in November, but you still should ask for help. On social media, ask for retweets and shares of your content. After a sale, ask customers to review you on Yelp.
You could even set up a referral program where existing customers get credit or free products for telling others about you. Ask for customer testimonials to post to your website. If you have customers who truly love you, they’ll be happy to help you grow.
Tip 5: Follow Up on Your Promises
Your campaign to win over customers shouldn’t be filled with empty promises. Make sure you deliver on anything you’ve said you’d do. That’s the secret to great customer service.
And after the vote (the sale), don’t abandon your supporters. Follow up after a purchase with a sincere email asking how the customer likes your product. This provides the opportunity to continue the dialogue and paves the way for repeat business. It also shows you care about each and every customer, and everyone likes to feel special.
Tip 6: Make Sure Your Support Staff Rocks
It’s not just your role to ensure your customers are happy. Everyone at your company should have the objective to creating fanatical customers that tell others about you and come back for more. To that end, make sure your marketing and sales teams are aligned on growth strategies and work together collaboratively to reach your goals. Train your customer support team and enable them to act in the best interest of your customers. Returns should be simple, not a headache.
Tip 7: Speak The People’s Language
This election, as well as the last one, saw the increased use of social media as a communication channel, which is smart of the candidates. When you use the tools, like SnapChat and YouTube, that your audience prefers, you instantly form a bond with them. Even if you’re not comfortable with a particular channel, if your customers are using it, learn it. Fast.
Tip 8: Don’t Be So Serious All The Time
While more often, the Presidential candidates are making fun of one another, sometimes they poke fun at themselves. After all, if you can laugh at yourself, surely you can run the country, right?
It’s good to be professional, but occasionally, let loose. Make a fun video of you and your crew doing ‘80s karaoke. Crack jokes on Twitter. Just break out of that serious skin once in a while.
Tip 9: Monitor the Polls
Every single candidate knows exactly where he or she stands at any given moment. They know that after making a particularly bold statement, they may lose a few supporters. The point is: they constantly monitor analytics and data. You should too.
Marketing is chock full of things to assess: web traffic, sales, social media follows. Pick what’s most important to achieving your marketing results, and pay attention to it. Then make changes to improve it, but just make one change at a time so you know what works and what doesn’t.
Tip 10: Constantly Strive to Be Better
Whoever wins the election this November, we all hope that the individual continues to deliver on his or her promises and that we see continued improvements and innovations coming from the White House.
Don’t rest on your laurels. You can’t afford to. There’s no top of the peak where you’ve succeeded and no longer have to work hard to attract customers. You have to continually market to them in new and exciting ways, to build trust with them, and to get them to buy from you again and again. It takes effort, yes, but it’s well worth it.
Come November, the Presidential election will be over, but your campaign continues. Make sure you constantly work to earn that vote, and you’ll be the candidate everyone loves.
Images: ” Close up on red heard in business woman’s hands. / Shutterstock.com“
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