Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Retail, Social Media and the Customer Experience

Social media continues to change the landscape of retail and how brands and customers engage with one another. With social media has come a shift in what customers expect from brands – responsiveness, intuitiveness, and an overall seamless experience – and retailers who don’t adapt are selling themselves short.
The Promise of the Social Web
According to Tara, the below question should be at the core of how brands use social to engage with their customers:
What is that thing we can do to help make our customers’ lives simpler, less confusing, less alientating, more efficient, more meaningful, and just plain better?
It’s not about what customers can do for brands, but what brands can do for their customers.

Know Your Customers and Your Brand

Social media has given customers a voice and opened up two-way conversation with brands.  Today’s retailers should be listening to their community to gain insight into who their customers are, what their interests and points of need are, and how they can make their lives easier.
It’s also crucial for retailers to know who they are as a brand before they begin engaging with their customers. To quote Tara, “if you don’t know who you are, then how can you expect your customers to identify with you?” Retailers need to create a brand identity and keep it consistent across all touch points.
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