Give Your Tribe a Voice: Using Brand Advocates
Chances are you’re a brand advocate of your favorite product.
Have a smart phone? Do you prefer one brand over another? If you’re an iPhone fan, there is a good chance you’ve recommended Apple products to others. Apple fans will wait in line all night for a new gadget, they are loyal customers who have become part of a community, part of a tribe. They aren’t just “Apple Fans” they are brand advocates. They lend their voices to on-line reviews, they chat about features in forums, they talk about apps in bars, they might be Apple’s biggest marketing tool.
So what does this mean to you? You can build your own tribe, yes, Apple is a huge company, but your brand advocates can grow just as loyal. People want to belong and feel connected, they want to be heard. Many people fire off an online review to join a larger conversation and now those reviews can mean the difference between a new customer or no customer. If you have a client who you know is exceptionally satisfied with your work, ask him to write a review. It can go on your company Facebook or even website. These sorts of testimonials really make a difference in the mind of potential clients, especially millennials.
If you see a positive review of your company, share it! Retweet that “Thank You” message, share that “OMG, you guys are the best” Facebook comment. Besides offering great customer service, you are now showing gratitude for their advocacy of your brand. Ultimately, the customer is in control of how your brand is viewed, you can help steer the conversation by embracing vocal brand advocates.
Besides offering an amazing product you have to think long term. Your promise is your brand, take time to develop a relationship with your consumer. Customer service and follow up are where you can create an army of loyal brand advocates who can’t wait to tag you on Facebook or mention you at a party. Take complaints and compliments seriously; consider how your customers will react and feel in the future; give them a reason to advocate for you, give them a reason to be part of your tribe.