NEW YORK, Dec. 5, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Now that people are openly sharing their good or bad experiences with brands online, the customer service bar has officially been raised. Small business owners looking to differentiate themselves from their competition must continue to evolve their communication practices and avoid online behavior that discourages customer engagement. Successful client engagement can be achieved by avoiding the following:

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Don’t overlook what the client is looking for.  While a leading-edge web design may help set your site apart from the rest, if you are not providing the basic information your client is looking for they will most likely take their business elsewhere.

Don’t complicate the user experience. Providing too little or too much information can trigger client disengagement. Content should be persuasive, easy to skim and informative.

Don’t try a blanket approach to social networks. Attempting to build a presence on all social networks will only set you up for failure. Determine the social network your audience most frequently visits and concentrate your efforts there.

Don’t indulge in self-promotion. Continually telling your followers how great you are on social media will never lead to successful customer engagement. Avoid this when necessary.

Don’t argue with clients. Acknowledge a problem when it occurs and attempt to resolve it in public as soon as you can. Your customer-focused approach should project respect for past, present and future clients alike.

For further discussion on the five digital communication "don’ts" view the article of Peter LaMotte, SVP at LEVICK, on PR Newswire’s Small Business Toolkit:

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