Customer engagement is a challenge because everyone is busy these days and everyone’s time is valuable. So valuable, that we can literally place a monetary value on it.
Thinking along these lines can help us marketers create more effective solutions and design more user-centric processes. If we think of each second that someone spends engaging as a cost, a literal cost, we’ll spend more effort making each app, website, advert, blog, banner, product or service the absolute best it can be.
Why should we pay for customer engagement?
Because attention is fucking valuable! If you think people want to engage with your brand, you’re wrong. If you think people are actually interested in you, you’re also wrong. Sorry.
People only care about what’s in it for them.
If I can’t get value from the five minutes I spend engaging with your brand, I’m not coming back.
So what’s your customer’s time worth?
Unfortunately, that’s not up to you. That’s up to them. Richard Herman is a good example of someone who did not want to spend his time engaging with a certain company. In the end, he charged them for his time.
Richard was sick of being harassed by annoying cold callers and ended up charging one PPI company £10 per minute for his time. Despite being registered with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS), these companies wouldn’t leave him alone. So ‘Dick told PPI Claimline that, if they call him again, he’d be charging them.
They called him again, so he charged them. £190.
And they paid him, too, after the threat of a court case.
We don’t have time to do things we don’t want to do
We don’t just want paying for the time we spend doing things that we consider an unreasonable tax on our time, like ‘Dick, we’re also willing to pay to avoid spending our time on those kind of situations.
A colleague came into the office last week complaining that she spent two hours of her Sunday ironing. She considered it an unreasonable tax on her time, given that she only gets two days off per week. She’d rather not spend half of her leisurely morning ironing and would rather go for a walk with her husband and dog.
Our car needs a hoover and a polish
This might take an hour. An hour that we could spend doing something more productive. An hour that we could spend earning. An hour that we could spend having fun.
It’s far easier to pay someone a tenner to take care of ironing a few shirts than it is to slave over it on your Sunday. It’s far easier to pay a few quid to whip your car through the drive through car wash than it is to labour with a bucket and sponge.
These days, if we don’t want to do something, we won’t and the things we class as an unreasonable tax on our time are changing.
Making it worth their while
For marketers, when your searching for attention and begging for engagement, when your penning your blogs and creating your content, remember that your customer’s time is literally worth something – money, in real terms.
When we’re dealing with people who are invoicing cold callers and outsourcing their ironing, then you’d better believe their time is precious.
So is what you’re offering them worth their time?
How much is your content worth?
Now, I’m obviously not seriously suggesting that we bribe customers to engage with our brands, but we must understand that people do see their time as having a cost attached to it.
So how much do you want somebody to spend on reading your article or engaging with you in any sense? When our time is worth so much to us, you’re going to have to make sure our investment is worth it.
By thinking of our customer’s time as a monetary issue and attaching a physical price to every tweet, every article and every second of engagement, we can make sure that we spend our money wisely and offer as much value to customers as we can.
So, how much do I owe ‘ya?
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