Engagement Marketing: How Small Business Wins in a Socially Connected World is a relatively new book from CEO of Constant Contact email services Gail Goodman. I think Goodman has done a great job demonstrating what true customer engagement means, why it’s beneficial for small business, and how to actually build engagement to create a true client experience that not only includes the actual product or service purchase but also building post-service into the experience.
Goodman talks about a three-step engagement marketing cycle that includes social media to enhance the experience. The first step is delivering an incredible experience and then following that up with some enticing reasons to stay in touch and then encouraging their engagement and participation on social media channels. Continuing to develop this cycle is what will encourage people to interact. Nobody talks about boring businesses so giving them something to talk about is what you’re after–because they’ll tell their friends.
What I think is valuable about the book is that it gives plenty of real world small business examples that could easily be implemented into other businesses. Goodman is the CEO of an email marketing company, Constant Contact, so it’s expected that she might take this opportunity to promote email marketing to some extent, but the examples she cites are so much more powerful when you combine email marketing and social media and work the tools together. While they can stand on their own, they aren’t nearly as powerful independently.
The book provides a number of practical examples that can be implemented by small businesses on a limited budget across a variety of industries. Goodman is inspiring throughout the book and you’re sure to have a number of solid ideas you can use right at your fingertips. As a marketing consultant working with small businesses, I see a lot of social media that is still very much spray and pray messaging and I think this book does a great job showing how a business can take the next step to actually encourage a level of engagement that is way more than a one-way conversation.
If you run a small business, Engagement Marketing is the perfect resource for ideas and some inspiration around how you can use social media, email marketing, blogs, and events to enhance engagement. It’s a fast and easy read and full of practical and useful ideas.