A brand advocate is essential to your marketing arsenal, especially if you have an upcoming product launch or announcement. Brand advocates create awareness for your brand and can also increase your sales, social media engagement and brand loyalty.
So you might notice that your customers are talking positively about your brand in comments on social media, emails to your customer service or reviews, but how do you turn those customers into brand advocates?
5 ways to turn customers into brand advocates
Make customers feel appreciated
The easiest way to make a group of customers into brand advocates organically is simple — listen to them and make them feel appreciated. Hear what your customers are asking for when it comes to new products, services or updates.
Respond to comments and reviews — both good and bad. Some of the biggest wins in brand advocacy are turning an upset customer into a lifelong brand advocate with the help of excellent customer service. Most angry customers are just looking to be seen and heard. Make sure whoever is running your social media and client relations works hard to make your brand top-notch in customer service.
Encourage user-generated content (UGC)
An easy way to turn your customers into brand advocates is by asking them to share their experiences, images and thoughts on social media and then responding to their content and sharing it with your followers. Most people who love your brand and are posting about it on their social media would love to interact with the brand.
Ask your customers to tag you in posts and ask if you can reshare them in your Stories on Instagram, in newsletter features, or even on your website as testimonials. This helps customers feel special and valued and creates a stronger connection with the customer. Another positive of UGC is when new customers see these photos, reviews or stories from other real customers, they’re more likely to engage with your brand and trust you.
Reward this brand advocacy with discounts, credits or shoutouts on social media.
Build a partnership
Building a partnership with another brand, small business or influencer is another way to utilize someone else’s audience to grow your own pool of customers and brand advocates. This might look like having a local business share that they use your product or creating a physical product or service with another brand. Influencers are also a great way to create an audience of trusting customers. If you find an influencer who truly loves your product and is already talking about it, your brand could work with them in a bigger capacity to take advantage of an already warm audience of possible customers.
These partnerships can give advocates access to perks from both brands and incentivize them to participate in the program regularly.
Create a brand advocate program
Once you have a group of brand advocates — from customers to partners and even employees — creating a brand advocate program can be a helpful way to keep everything organized. This is especially helpful if you have brand updates, product launches or new services coming out soon. A brand advocacy program can be an easy way to share these new services or products with your pool of loyal customers who will be excited to spread the word about what your brand has on the horizon.
Use a brand advocacy platform
Use a platform like Zuberance to manage your brand advocacy efforts all in one place. Invite current customers with personalized emails asking them to join the program for freebies, badges, discounts and more.
No matter where your brand is on its customer advocate journey, including it in your marketing strategy will not disappoint you. Starting with excellent customer service and connection and making your customers and employees feel appreciated may seem small, but some of the biggest brands were built with the help of word of mouth.