By: Collin Harrington
Developing relationships is essential when promoting your brand. Relationships allow you to build connections, which can establish customers and build a community for your brand. Social media can enhance brands’ customer relationships if executed effectively. Social media marketing allows businesses to have an advantage compared to traditional marketing for a variety of different reasons such as more freedom when searching and allowing the customer to view the intention of the business. These three main points are the foundation of successful brand relationship building.
Social Media Marketing Activity
The first point of interest is Social Media Marketing Activity (SMMA). When building relationships, you want to connect with your customers as best as possible. Framing your message strategically on social media helps your brand pinpoint ideal clients, which will help you connect easier and create appeal. When a potential or new customer looks on your social media, they want to feel connected- how is your brand building a space they can actively be a part of? When marketing your content, a customer wants to be able to connect with the brand.
One crucial way to do this is by interacting- being social on social media allows a brand to enforce a positive environment for its customers. Creating a brand face for your social media and being active on it creates authenticity and loyalty to your customers, creates trust, which in turn builds credibility for your brand. All of these factors can create a positive customer experience when doing social media marketing.
Customer experience is crucial for a brand when developing potential or long-lasting relationships with a customer. Generally, when you go to an online store or a restaurant, you want to have a good customer experience; when you do not have a good experience, you often see that as a reflection of the whole business, and that business loses your service. However, if you have a good customer experience, then a customer wants to keep interacting with that business. A good customer experience over time builds a positive relationship. According to Ardy Wibowo et al. (2021), “Customers like to associate themselves with the enterprise because beneficial values of their own and those of the company overlap with each other” (p.5).
Additionally, good customer experiences for your brand can be initiated by outdoing expectations, fast service/timely reactions (answering DM’s, calls, emails, etc..), rewarding loyalty, asking, and accepting feedback, showing appreciation for your customers, and CONNECTING!
Lastly, customers want to view a brand’s intention; what is the plan of this brand? What is this brand trying to convey to me? The brand intention will build customer behavioral outcomes, which in turn creates relationships. As Ardy Wibowo et al., (2021) explains, there are three types of intention when constructing brand relationships: purchase intention, loyalty intention, and participation intention. Purchase intention focuses on the intention of the customer after viewing what your brand has to offer, what activated something in a customer to make the intention to buy from your brand? Loyalty intention describes customers’ loyalty to your brand; what inspires them to keep coming back to your brand and purchase products? Lastly, participation intention describes participation in committing to social commerce activity, your socials, and your participating with your brand in general.
These three intentions can be earned by customer experience and social media marketing activity, as these two things have a direct correlation to brand relationship building. These intentions are especially gained on social media as it is dominant in the marketing industry, gives users more freedom when researching your brand, allows easy word-of-mouth, and displays your brand’s atmosphere quickly and effectively. According to Ardy Wibowo et al., (2021) “quality of the relationship between the user and the social networking website mediates the influence of social support and website quality toward the intention to use social commerce and continuing to use social networking sites” (p.4). This proves the statement that intention will dramatically increase the level of relationship developed, thus creating social support for your brand, and gaining customers. A key point a brand should ask themselves is the quality of the relationship, and it all depends on these factors. The best quality attracts the best customers for your brand to thrive over social media.
Social Media Marketing Activity, Customer Experience, and intention (purchase intention, loyalty intention, and participation intention) will help build a positive atmosphere for potential, new, and long-lasting customers and establish relationships where customers can connect to the culture and community of your brand. When a brand executes Social Media Marketing Activity and Customer Experience correctly and develops intention with their customers through product or service, it allows customers to feel cared for, thus creating trust and credibility. Intention is the source of every brand’s survival.
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