Last time, we went over the idea of a Ladder of Engagement and how it might be applied online. It’s easy to adopt a traditional sales focus and use all your efforts getting customers aware of what you are doing and to buy your product, without devoting any attention to where they go after they make a purchase. That’s a big mistake.
A grocery store near me is constantly advertising. In just about every community paper, they have an advertisement. They have a big blinking sign and windows covered with their specials, so that anyone going by knows what they are selling. But once you go inside, it’s a mess. The shelves are disorganized, the aisles are narrow and cramped, and checkout takes an eternity. The advertising drew me in but the unpleasant experience means that I rarely go back and I tell everyone else to go elsewhere. Is the same thing happening with your online advertising?
Instead, focus on both sides of the ladder of engagement. Ask people to check in on foursquare or write a review on Yelp. Use Twitter and Facebook to let people know what is going on with your company and pique their interest in new products. If there is a problem, use social media to quickly respond and improve your image. This might not directly lead to sales (though it might), but using social media to move people up the ladder of engagement can result in regular customers who encourage all their friends to do the same. Look at what happened to Peter Shankman.