In the last decade, Customer Engagement has become a trending topic of conversation in the corporate marketing circles. Despite its popularity, it’s not understood by many in those same circles. Like many other words and terms, it remains just another fancy corporate jargon.
In order to understand the concept behind the idea, it is important to understand what it means. Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary defines Customer Engagement as:
"the process of encouraging people to be interested in a company and its products or services".
The above definition can be broken down into elements, which together form the whole idea. These elements are:
Each of these elements say something about the idea.
As per the first element, it is not just a one-time activity but a process, which may or may not be time bound. However, the thing with processes is that when one ends, the other starts. Therefore, it is a continuous process.
The second element talks about encouraging people and not handholding or guiding them. This implies emotional connect and should not be mixed up with Customer Experience (CX). Even though a lot of CX companies position their services as CE solutions.
The subtlety of the idea is talked about in the third element. CE is just about igniting interest in the people and not selling them a product or a service. It is like the “Why” in Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle. It is about conversing with the subconscious mind of people.
Ultimately, the fourth element talks about a company, which in turn would mean a brand. Therefore, it is about building a brand image. Once a strong and positive image has been built, the products or services will sell on their own. And this is not just theory. Apple is a great example of that.
Thus, going by the dissected version of the above definition, Customer Engagement simply is a continuous process of emotionally connecting with people at their subconscious level.