3 ways to cultivate brand advocates for positive word-of-mouth marketing
Who does more for your brand than a highly satisfied customer? The answer: a passionate customer.
Brand advocates are customers who enthusiastically share your company with others based solely on their own positive experiences. By leveraging their passion, you reach more customers and convert more leads than with traditional marketing alone. Brand advocates bring nearly unmatched word-of-mouth marketing benefits to your company.
- Customers referred by brand advocates have a 37% higher retention rate.
- Advocates tell twice as many people about their purchases when compared to regular customers.
- Ninety percent of customers trust a recommendation from a friend or acquaintance.
How to find them
Conduct a customer survey to determine which customers are the most satisfied with your brand. Ask respondents to rate how likely they are to recommend your brand to a friend or colleague on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the most likely. Those that answer 10 are potential brand advocates. You can also identify your repeat customers with phone numbers, email addresses and other information they provide at each transaction.
How to cultivate them
After determining which customers could potentially become brand advocates, you need to nurture them. Continue to increase your value by seeking to improve their experience with your company even more.
1. Leverage exclusive content
Bring your brand advocates closer to your company by providing highly tailored content that helps them reach their goals for their business. Ask the question “What kind of business do you want to be for your clients?” and use the answers to create and share educational content such as webinars, whitepaper downloads and newsletters.
2. Give limited early access
Offer beta testing or early access to products or services in exchange for honest reviews. That early positive feedback can also be used on the site when the product launches, and the user comments can be a great resource for improving products and services in the future.
3. Offer loyalty programs
A program rewarding repeat customers with special offers or discounts incentivizes them to continue purchasing, motivates them to try new products and strengthens their brand loyalty. Encouraging referrals or product reviews also provides prospects with a trustworthy peer recommendation to consider when researching products.
Brand advocates are some of the most valuable customers in your audience. They provide free and effective marketing via word of mouth and can provide feedback on your products and services that can help improve your market appeal. Harnessing brand advocates generates leads with higher conversion rates compared to traditional marketing alone and provides a trustworthy recommendation for prospects. The greatest appeal of a brand advocate is not their satisfaction with your product, but their passion for your brand.