Customer Engagement Models: What, Why, How, and Best Practices

Customer engagement is not just a buzzword; it’s a critical factor that can make or break your success.

It’s the secret sauce behind retaining loyal customers, driving revenue growth, and establishing your brand as a trusted authority in your industry.

But in a world where customers have more choices than ever before, how can you create meaningful, lasting connections?

Enter client engagement models—your roadmap to building and nurturing long-lasting relationships with customers.

This comprehensive guide focuses on client engagement to help you:

  • explore client engagement models,
  • understand their importance,
  • see the impact they have on your business growth,
  • check no-touch, low-touch, and high-touch models,
  • grasp popular customer engagement frameworks like McKinsey, AARRR, and LAER,
  • create positive experiences for customers with automations.

So, whether you’re a seasoned pro looking to produce a more effective customer engagement strategy or a newcomer trying to understand the ropes, this guide has something for everyone.

TL;DR

  • Customer engagement is essential for brand loyalty, revenue growth, and brand authority in any industry.
  • Client engagement models help create strong relationships in any competitive market full of options.
  • These models provide insights into high-touch, low-touch, and no-touch engagement strategies, tailored to diverse business requirements.
  • Frameworks like McKinsey, AARRR, and LAER offer structured approaches to enhance the customer engagement process.
  • Central to a successful customer engagement model are some best practices: deep understanding of customers, clarity in goals, mapping the customer journey, determining customer touchpoints, and leveraging data insights.
  • Picking the right engagement model involves understanding the target customers, matching tech capabilities, setting objectives, and being open to experimentation and adaptation.
  • Continuous monitoring, feedback collection, and training are essential for the consistent success of any customer engagement strategy.

What is a Customer Engagement Model?

Nowadays, customers have exceptional power and multiple choices.

That’s why building and maintaining a stronger relationship with customers has become a top priority.

Customer engagement models are necessary in order for businesses to thrive in this dynamic environment.

To understand client engagement models better, exploring the complex relationship between customers and businesses is a crucial step. Customers are not just transactions; they are individuals with changing needs and expectations as they look for more than just products or services.

What they want is experiences that align with their values.

A customer engagement model is a strategic framework that shapes every interaction between a business and its customers.

Think of it as a well-planned strategy, a playbook, and a guiding principle, all in one. A complete customer engagement model has several key parts

🧠 Understanding

It all begins with understanding your customers on a deep level. This involves delving deep into their demographics, psychographics, and behaviors.

What are their pain points? What drives their decisions? What are their aspirations?

This understanding serves as the cornerstone of your engagement model.

📔 Goals and Objectives

Next, you need to define your engagement goals and objectives.

What do you aim to achieve through your interactions with customers? Is it about increasing brand loyalty, boosting customer lifetime value, or driving advocacy?

Clarity here is crucial.

🔍 Mapping the Customer Journey

An effective engagement model maps the entire customer journey, from the initial touchpoint to post-purchase interactions. This map identifies key milestones, potential pain points, and opportunities for engagement at each stage.

📍 Touchpoints and Channels

It’s essential to determine the touchpoints and channels through which you’ll engage with customers.

Will it be through email, social media, your website, or in-person interactions? Each channel has its unique nuances that must be considered.

🎖️ Strategies and Tactics

Your engagement model should outline the specific strategies and tactics you’ll employ to nurture customer relationships. This could involve personalized interactions, relevant content, targeted marketing campaigns, proactive customer support, and more.

📊 Data and Insights

Data is the core of any engagement model. You must have systems in place to gather, analyze, and derive actionable insights from customer data. This data-driven approach enables you to continuously refine your engagement strategies.

why customer engagement models matter

Why Do Customer Engagement Models Matter?

Understanding the importance of client engagement models requires us to examine the broader marketing and sales funnel.

One popular framework often used to visualize this process is the AIDAE model, which stands for Attention, Interest, Desire, Action, and Engagement.

The AIDAE model,’s ultimate goal is engagement—the point at which customers are not only aware of your brand but actively participating and interacting with it.

Achieving this level of engagement is essential because engaged customers are more likely to:

1️⃣ Stay Loyal

Engaged customers are more loyal, making repeat purchases and advocating for your brand.

2️⃣ Provide Valuable Feedback

Engaged customers are willing to share feedback, enabling you to improve your products or services.

3️⃣ Increase Lifetime Value

Engaged customers tend to spend more over their lifetime, contributing to your bottom line.

4️⃣ Refer Others

Engaged customers are more likely to recommend your brand to friends and family, leading to organic growth.

To reach the pinnacle of engagement, businesses need client engagement models. These models provide the structure and strategies required to move customers through the AIDAE funnel, ultimately leading to long-term relationships.

What Are the 3 Types of Engagement Models to Use?

When it comes to customer engagement, one size does not fit all. The choice of engagement model depends on various factors, including your industry, target audience, and business goals. Here are three primary types of engagement models:

1. High-Touch

High-touch engagement is characterized by a personalized and hands-on approach.

In this model, businesses invest considerable time and resources in building deep relationships with a relatively small number of high-value customers.

High-touch engagement is ideal for businesses offering complex or high-ticket products and services, where personalized approach attention can make a significant difference.

The benefits of high-touch engagement are the following:

  • Enhanced customer satisfaction,
  • Increased customer loyalty,
  • Opportunities for upselling and cross-selling.

2. Low-Touch

Low-touch engagement combines automation with human interaction to cater to a larger customer base.

It strikes a balance between personalization and efficiency, allowing businesses to engage with more customers while still producing satisfied customers.

Low-touch engagement is suitable for businesses with moderate to high transaction volumes and less complex offerings.

The benefits of low-touch engagement are the following:

  • Scalability,
  • Cost-effectiveness,
  • Improved customer retention.

3. No-Touch

As the name suggests, no-touch engagement relies heavily on automation and self-service options.

It’s designed for businesses that want to engage with customers at scale without direct human involvement.

This model leverages technology, such as chatbots, self-service portals, and automated email campaigns, to deliver a frictionless and efficient customer experience.

The benefits of no-touch engagement are the following:

  • Cost-efficiency,
  • 24/7 availability,
  • Rapid response times.

Each of these engagement models has its strengths and weaknesses, so, you should choose the one that aligns with your business strategy and customer preferences.

Customer Engagement Models to Try Today

Exploring the types of engagement models, let’s dive deeper into some specific customer engagement frameworks that you can implement in your business.

These models offer structured approaches to customer engagement and can serve as valuable templates for your strategy:

1- McKinsey Customer Decision Journey

The McKinsey Customer Decision Journey emphasizes the nonlinear and dynamic nature of the customer journey. It recognizes that customers can enter and exit the decision-making process at various points, making it essential to engage them consistently throughout. 

This model consists of four key stages:

✅ initial consideration,

✅ active evaluation,

✅ closure,

✅ post-purchase experience.

Check out our guide on McKinsey’s 7-S Change Management Model here 👈

2- AARRR (Pirate Metrics)

AARRR stands for Acquisition, Activation, Retention, Referral, and Revenue. This model focuses on key metrics at each stage of the customer lifecycle.

By tracking and optimizing these metrics, businesses can fine-tune their engagement strategies and drive growth.

3- LAER (Land, Adopt, Expand, Renew)

The LAER model is particularly relevant for subscription-based businesses.

It outlines the customer journey from initial acquisition (Land) to product adoption (Adopt), expansion of usage (Expand), and finally, renewal of the subscription (Renew), providing a clear path for maximizing customer lifetime value.

How to Pick the Right Engagement Model for You?

Selecting the right customer engagement model for your business involves careful consideration of several factors. Here are some best practices to guide your decision:

1- Know Your Audience 🗣️

Understand your target audience’s preferences, behaviors, and pain points.

Different customer segments may require different engagement approaches depending on these factors and many others.

2- Match Your Tech Stack 🖥️

Ensure that your existing technology infrastructure can support your chosen engagement model.

Implement the necessary tools and systems to enable seamless customer interactions.

3- Set Clear Objectives 📈

Define specific engagement goals and KPIs.

Establish benchmarks to measure the success of your chosen model and make data-driven improvements.

4- Test and Iterate ⚙️

Don’t be afraid to experiment with different engagement models.

Continuously gather feedback and data to refine your approach and adapt to changing customer needs.

5- Train Your Team 📝

If your chosen model involves human interaction, provide training to your team members to ensure they can deliver a consistent and high-quality customer experience.

6- Monitor and Analyze 🔬

Regularly monitor engagement metrics and customer feedback.

Use this data to identify areas for improvement and optimization for now and for the future.

7- Stay Agile 💡

Flexibility is key, so, you better be prepared to adjust your engagement model as market dynamics evolve.

By following these best practices, you can select and implement a customer engagement model that aligns with your business objectives and maximizes customer satisfaction.

Check out our article titled 14 Best Customer Engagement Software of 2023 to find the best customer engagement software for you!

Conclusion

Being a dynamic and strategic framework that serves as the guiding star for businesses, customer engagement models create meaningful interactions and build lasting connections with customers.

The elements below play a crucial role in creating a symphony of customer experiences:

  • understanding customer behaviors,
  • setting clear objectives,
  • mapping the customer journey,
  • selecting the right touchpoints and channels,
  • crafting effective strategies,
  • and harnessing the power of data and insights.

In short, you should embrace agility as you adapt to the ever-evolving demands of the market.

With client engagement models as your guiding compass and innovative solutions like UserGuiding by your side, you are well-equipped to embark on a path toward sustainable success. 

The journey of building meaningful, enduring relationships with your customers has just begun. May it be a voyage filled with growth, loyalty, and countless success stories.

Simple, Affordable, and Powerful User Onboarding & Survey Software.

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Frequently Asked Questions


How do you create a customer engagement model?

Creating a customer engagement model involves:

1- Understanding Your Customers: Analyze customer behavior, preferences, and pain points.

2- Defining Goals: Set clear engagement objectives and KPIs.

3- Selecting an Engagement Model: Choose a high-touch, low-touch, or no-touch approach.

4- Implementing Tools: Invest in the necessary technology and automation.

5- Testing and Iterating: Continuously refine your model based on data and feedback.


What are the 3 models of engagement?

The three primary client engagement models are:

1) High-Touch: Personalized and hands-on engagement with a small customer base.

2) Low-Touch: A balance between automation and human interaction for a larger customer base.

3) No-Touch: Full automation and self-service options for engaging with customers at scale.


What are the 4 types of customer engagement?

The four types of customer engagement are:

1- Cognitive Engagement: Engaging customers through content and information.

2- Emotional Engagement: Creating emotional connections through personalized experiences.

3- Behavioral Engagement: Encouraging specific actions or behaviors.

4- Transactional Engagement: Engaging customers through transactions, such as purchases or bookings.


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Mert Aktas

Mert Aktas

Mert is the Marketing Manager of UserGuiding, a code-free product walkthrough software that helps teams scale user onboarding and boost user engagement.