What Is Engagement Strategy?

Posted by Nora DePalma

Jan 1, 2019 3:01:00 PM

Engagement strategy attracts customers and stakeholders to engage with your brand or cause.

Rooted in empathy and listening, engagement strategy is closely related to public relations, the function of building mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics (Source: PRSA).

Modern public relations leverages digital marketing for engagement at scale, bringing you closer to your prospects, customers and stakeholders through social media, content marketing, search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM)

It's the engagement your stakeholders notice, remember and come back for.

Engagement Strategy - Website Version


Successful Engagement: An Offline Example

Think about buying from a local shopkeeper who knows you so well, you respond when she messages that the perfect item for you is now in stock. You find the information helpful, making it a mutually beneficial engagement.


Successful Engagement: An Online Example 

Today, that spot-on information is just as likely to come from Amazon or Google as you search for ideas and solutions. When you find helpful information during your buyer or decision journey, you spend time with it, making it a mutually beneficial engagement between you and the brand providing the helpful information. For really valuable information 


The 6 Elements of Engagement Strategy

  1. A PR mindset that encompass all paid, earned and owned channels.
  2. Leading with purpose and taking principled stands on issues that matter to your stakeholders.
  3. Storytelling and experiential to attract and sustain your audience's interest.
  4. Leaning into automation and machine learning to assure that the right message reaches the right person at the right time.
  5. Approaching customer service as a brand imperative that is part of marketing, not siloed from it.
  6. Being a good and ethical employer that employees love to talk about.


Why Seth Godin is Our North Star for Engagement Strategy

Seth Godin said marketing doesn't have to suck. 

In his classic book Permission Marketing Seth says permission marketing is the privilege (not the right) of delivering anticipated, personal and relevant messages to people who actually want to get them.

What is permission marketing by Seth Godin

Seems pretty straightforward, right?

But it can be hard to do if you’ve spent an entire marketing career pushing messages in a monologue.

Engagement strategy brings the spirit of permission marketing to life, uniting the art of storytelling with the data-driven insights to create an authentic emotional connection with your audience.


The EQ and The IQ of Engagement Strategy

The art of storytelling engages and inspires your audience, building and sustaining trust.  Your storytelling is the emotional quotient (EQ) of engagement strategy



Data-driven insights enable the right message to reach the right person at the right time, the intelligence quotient (IQ) of engagement strategy.

Peak engagement is at the intersection of EQ and IQ. 


The Business Case for Engagement Strategy

It's cheaper to retain a customer than to win a customer.

It's way cheaper to retain a customer than to lose and have to win back that customer.

It's a better experience for both parties to have a mutually beneficial experience. 

In short, engagement strategy is a win/win, reducing your cost of acquisition over time by increasing customer lifetime value and loyalty.


Related articles:

How to Measure Content Marketing

How Lifestyle Brands can Use Pinterest to Drive Website Traffic

How Artificial Intelligence Drives Engagement at Scal

Topics: Engagement Strategy