5 Ways to Create More Brand Advocates

Advocates already exist. Your opportunity is to turn them into a powerful marketing force. {tweet this} How do companies create more Brand Advocates?

5 Proven Ways (and One Shocking Way) to Create More Brand Advocates

Provide an "insanely great product"

This was one of Steve Jobs's famous statements. Very few people go out of their way to advocate mediocre products or services. Advocacy starts with having a product or service people are eager to recommend. {tweet this}

Deliver memorable service

In an era when so many products and services are similar, service is the great differentiator. Nordstrom, Zappo's and Four Seasons hotels are examples of companies that created legions of Advocates by providing extraordinary service.

Focus on good profits 

As loyalty guru Fred Reichheld has stated, there's a difference between good profits and bad profits. Bad profits include earnings from price gouging, cutbacks on customer service, and hidden charges.

Do the right thing, even when it costs you money 

It's easy for companies to do the right thing when it doesn't cost extra. But when doing the right thing costs companies money, many firms take the low road. For example, if allowing a customer to return a lemon costs you money, do it anyway. Much better to do it than create a Detractor. If your company has screwed up, admit your mistake and fix it as fast as possible. In the social media age, a handful of disgruntled customers can harm your company or brand's cherished reputation. {tweet this}

Have a social conscience or get one fast 

People are more likely to recommend companies and brands that have a social conscience. When it was revealed that Nike was paying low wages to workers, its Advocates abandoned the brand. Take a social stand on issues or give back to your communities. Brands like The Body Shop earn advocacy in these ways.

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Bonus: Fire Your Detractors 

The old saying "You can't please all of the people all of the time" is really true.

Your company may be serving the wrong customers. They may not be well suited for your products or services. they may need more hand-holding than you're willing or able to give them. They may be too high-maintenance, too demanding, or too cheap.

In these cases, the best approach may be to part ways. Breaking up may be hard to do, but when it comes to some Detractors, it may be best for all parties involved. {tweet this}


This is an excerpt from the book, Brand Advocates: Turning Enthusiastic Customers into a Powerful Marketing Force (Wiley; ISBN: 978-1-1183-3603-8; July 2012; Hardcover & E-book)