Trends come and go, and they often redefine how a retail business operates and what kinds of offers it creates to attract the modern customer. What needs to become a constant in any retail brand’s strategy is its approach to overall engagement, internal as well as external. Investing more time and creativity in defining your engagement strategy with your employees as well as your customers will lead to a better, more productive business, but also more success down the line.
Too many retail brands focus heavily on pushy advertising in order to be competitive and remain visible online as well as offline. In the same way, these same brands focus on attracting top candidates without really knowing how to keep them. Engagement strategies will help you build a roadmap for your brand’s long-lasting recognition and success. Let’s cover some of the most impactful engagement elements for your employees and customers that you need to incorporate in your strategy as soon as possible.
Feedback at the core of your strategy
Helpful and constructive – these are the kind of comments you need to look for when you’re devising your very own internal feedback cycle. Your HR manager should regularly conduct employee performance reviews, but the employees should also be allowed to do the same for the entire brand. Their feedback will become a treasure trove of improvement opportunities that will make your employees feel heard and valued, provided that you follow through.
On the other end of the spectrum, asking your customers for feedback and then acting on it will entice them to communicate with you more frequently. If their comments get nothing but crickets, you cannot expect them to rush to comment on your posts or share your articles. Use every opportunity to post their reviews (which further boosts your ranking), and of course, make it as prominent as possible to build trust with new customers who will base their decision on other customers’ previous experiences.
SEO for better brand availability
You cannot expect your customers to miraculously find your brand online in a sea of other retail businesses that offer the same, or similar products in your area. If you operate in a market with exceptionally high levels of competition such as Sydney, you need to invest even more time and effort to push your brand towards the top of the SERPs.
Your local business needs to use trusted Sydney SEO methods like keyword optimization and ongoing content creation to bring more local customers to your site and inspire more engagement. Covering Sydney events where your brand plays a role, working with other local businesses, and earning links on the sites of local magazines all helps drive up your website traffic.
What about employees and SEO? Well, imagine what you can do when you position your employer brand higher on the results page and you’re in need of top-notch salespeople. More potential employees will show their interest and engage with your brand, while existing employees can help boost that engagement with their own contributions.
Ensure ongoing education
Knowledge is at the core of every successful collaboration, so it makes sense you’re after employees with all the right qualifications. The job they take up with your brand, however, should in no way become a setback for their further professional growth. One of the key motivation sources for any employee is training availability and ongoing education.
Education, on the other hand, is another brilliant way to engage your customers, too. Do they know all the different ways they can put your product to use? All the ways they can wear a stylish item, or all the methods of using a particular tool you’re selling? Informative content that answers their most common questions will inspire them to go to you for other tips and advice, ask questions, and engage with your brand more frequently.
Influencers and brand ambassadors to the rescue
A major part of how your brand communicates with customers consists of what you inspire others to say about you. If you consistently show your customers that others before them have rightfully trusted your retail brand with their needs, they’ll be much more likely to show up at your store or visit your website looking for their next favorite product.
If you do the same with your employee experiences with the help of online employer review platforms, you’ll build the right employer brand and turn employees into brand ambassadors more effective than any job ad ever. Engage your customers by enticing them to post their own content while interacting with your brand – through images, creative polls, surveys, and let them tag you. Engage your employees by letting them post their own experiences about working with your brand. Their voices will help your business thrive.
Engagement is the result of a multitude of different tactics, ongoing learning, and above all, your management’s willingness to make changes when necessary. Sometimes that means adapting to a more flexible collaboration model, while at other times, it requires your brand to completely revamp its onboarding procedures or social media guidelines.
The key to remember is that you’re not getting a set-in-stone strategy with these ideas, but merely a foundation upon which you can build with your own creativity and regular audits. Listen to your employees as much as you listen to your customers, and your retail business will stand the test of time.