Attention is the currency of the 21st century – and there’s no shortage of competitors angling for your customers’ valuable time. That’s why, in addition to acquiring customers, smart businesses are focusing more and more on customer engagement. Capturing attention is one thing, but holding onto it is something else entirely.
‘Customer engagement’ can mean different things to different people. But at its core, it’s pretty simple: customer engagement refers to the complete set of activities that companies use to build and maintain direct, meaningful relationships with their customers.
Braze’s 2021 Global Customer Engagement Review research has found that companies with exceptional customer engagement programmes see higher user lifetime value and lower acquisition costs, resulting in long-term, capital-efficient business growth. These brands use customer engagement technology, powered by live customer data, to listen to their customers, understand and interpret customers’ actions, and act quickly and effectively.
Companies with exceptional customer engagement programmes see higher user lifetime value and lower acquisition costs.
Customer engagement is an initiative that strengthens a direct connection with your consumers. That could be as simple as a welcome email campaign or as complex as a customised onboarding journey that leverages user data to deliver a unique, personalised experience. Customer engagement can be a powerful driver when it comes to business goals across your organisation. It can not only spur sales but inform product development, bolster customer retention and benefit your company in numerous other ways. Put it this way: it’s the secret sauce that elevates a successful company to an essential one.
Reaping the rewards of engagement
But how big an impact can it have – and how do brands think about customer engagement today? To find out, we partnered with Wakefield Research to conduct a study that evaluated companies across a customised framework of metrics that measured 12 key customer engagement factors. These included willingness to experiment, dedicated staffing and technological advancement, and tapped anonymised behavioural data from 5 billion Braze users to create a detailed portrait of how companies worldwide engage with their customers.
Unsurprisingly, the results were clear: companies that prioritise customer engagement reap the rewards from it. More than half of the companies ranked as most mature in our Customer Engagement Index exceeded their revenue goals for 2020. In addition, we found a direct correlation between companies that self-evaluated their customer engagement practices highly and revenue goals: 67% of companies that said they had ‘excellent’ customer engagement exceeded their revenue goals. On the other side of the equation, 54% of companies that self-evaluated as ‘fair’ or ‘poor’ in customer engagement fell short of their revenue goals. That’s a pretty stark contrast.
We also gained exclusive insight into where today’s companies are excelling when it comes to customer engagement: 59% of the businesses profiled in the survey were willing to experiment with different methodologies and tactics, using multiple tests and analytics – a key driver of an effective strategy. On the other hand, very few companies fully leverage the advantages that a modern data-driven marketplace offers. Only 10% of companies surveyed use real-time data to personalise communications, which is incredibly low for such an effective technique.
While customer engagement is central to today’s most successful marketing programs, there’s still a lot of confusion around how to make the most of it. For best practices, strategic and tactical insights, and data on how to boost your customer engagement outcomes, check out the 2021 Global Customer Engagement Review.