In our earlier two blogs, we discussed what brand engagement is and how to build durable business empires employing brand engagement strategies. Since they're well-received, we're back to shed more light on the practical aspects of brand engagement strategies.
Today we're bringing the third and final part of the series, where we'll discuss the top 4 brand engagement strategies brands employ to attract new prospects and delight existing customers.
1. Providing more value to engage your audience
Providing more value than what the customers initially signed up for is not a strategy, per se. It’s just refining your product and offerings. But in practice, it works as a strategy.
Customers accept the cost of the product as long as it offers value to what they pay. But when you can add more value to the offering that’s already in place at the same cost, it’s a game changer.
A great example to see this strategy in practice is the bootstrapped, profit-churning SEO software suite Ahrefs.
For those who don’t know, Ahrefs is an all-in-one, world-class SEO toolkit you can use for keyword research, link building, competitor analysis, site audits, rank tracking, and more.
This toolkit is the product customers are paying for, but Ahrefs goes the extra mile by offering a great value of information about general and specific SEO practices for their users and prospects.
What’s the result?
On average, Ahrefs’s blog pages get more than 500K in organic traffic, and they rank on the first page of Google for more than 12,000 keywords (not just any keywords, but keywords with high search volume). Ahrefs’ YouTube channel has around 340K subscribers, getting more than 357K video views.
In addition to being a world-class SEO tool, Ahrefs arms its product offerings with such a wealth of information that it serves as a gateway that regularly engages its users and prospects (while also generating passive income). As it is a fast-growing industry, Ahrefs’s users enthusiastically wait every week for their new blog or YouTube video to drop so they can upgrade their knowledge.
Their collaterals serve as an engagement medium that initiates a conversation between the brand and its users. By offering more and consistent value to its customers, it creates a value proposition that makes it impossible to leave the product. Thus, Ahrefs enables brand engagement while keeping its prospects close and its users closer.
2. Personalizing your offerings
Whatever your preferred medium of communication with your audience, personalizing the message delivers better results. In fact, more personalization will be the future of brand engagement.
More than ever, people are aware of the mass marketing strategies brands employ and want to be treated as individuals. They expect brands to make an effort to cultivate a personal relationship with them instead of shooting out mass newsletter campaigns.
Brands breaking the personalization limits are seeing a remarkable increase in their reach and revenue. Nike is the perfect example to see this strategy in practice.
If you’ve bought shoes from them or if you’ve checked out their website, you’ll understand the level of their personalization. They have a set of standard models people can buy and use, but they also offer customization for certain models.
From the shoe’s base to its eyestay, you get the option to personalize around 11 parts of Nike’s sneakers. Nike wants the world to wear their sneakers, but at the same time, they understand their users’ preference to show their individuality. Offering such wide personalization options enables sneakerheads to fall in love with their brand again and again.
By going beyond what they have and offering personalization options, Nike opens a door that enables their customers and prospects to engage with the brand. They initiate the conversation about the brand and their product among the targeted users on social media platforms. By rolling out new and retro models at perfect intervals, Nike ensures the chatter and the engagement continues.
3. Increasing brand engagement through user-generated content (UGC)
Before we go deep to dissect this strategy, first, let’s shed light on what user-generated content is. Even if you’re not aware of the term, you’ve probably created similar content for a brand in your life.
So what is User-Generated Content (UGC)?
When Apple launches their new iPhone models, the brand loyalists and users buy them and create content such as unboxing, tips and tricks on the latest iPhones, top things to do when buying one, and more. They also share the images and videos they shoot with their iPhones and upload them on social media, hashtagging Apple.
This content isn’t created by Apple but instead by the product’s users. That’s why it’s called user-generated content.
So, what difference does UGC make?
First, Apple isn’t paying them for making the content—users are creating it on their own. Apple gets more reach, and they get to add more content under their hashtag.
Second, businesswire¹ stats reveal that prospects and customers are 2.4X more likely to say UGC is more authentic than branded content. What does that mean? When content comes from fellow users, prospects trust it more than content from the brands themselves. It shows them that UGCs are real and raw compared to a brand’s airbrushed content.
Notion, the popular note-taking application, has been practicing this strategy for a while, and they’re getting a great reception from their users. Their brand loyalists and dedicated users create sleek and stylish templates of all forms that can be used within the application, and these are virally shared among other users. This creates a persona around the product that Notion is only for the intellectually superior, and those who care about their productivity should join the application.
Like Apple, Notion doesn’t spend a dime on this user-generated content. But the UGCs created around Notion initiate the conversation among the users and prospects and keep the brand’s name on top of everyone’s mind.
4. Engaging customers and prospects by conducting events
Using events to engage prospects and customers is not an out-of-the-box strategy. It has been practiced for decades and has been one of the top strategies for brand engagement. But events have mostly been out of reach for smaller brands because of their higher operating costs.
The pandemic changed the outlook we have about events. It showed the world there is an alternative way, that they can conduct events online without splashing big bucks while also making the great impression brands deeply desire.
A great example to see this strategy in practice is Figma’s Config.
Figma, the collaborative web application for interactive design, founded only in 2016, has been making waves in its domain and threatening the Goliaths of the design industry with its simple, light product.
Config is Figma’s annual event where the world’s top designers come together and share their learnings with the audience. The recent edition featured 100+ speakers from 20+ countries with 65+ sessions that spanned 24 hours, and it was conducted entirely online. Config attracts audiences from every nation in the world, and it has been a great success for Figma.
By creating such an event and bringing together the big names of the design industry, Figma’s Config initiates a conversation between them, their users, and the prospects without burning a hole in their budget.
These top 4 brand engagement strategies have been successfully employed by big brands worldwide. Check what would suit your brand and employ them for great brand and customer engagement with your prospects and users.
Stackla Survey Reveals Disconnect Between the Content Consumers Want & What Marketers Deliver. Retrieved September 21, 2022 from https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20190220005302/en/Stackla-Survey-Reveals-Disconnect-Between-the-Content-Consumers-Want-What-Marketers-Deliver