Brand Advocacy: What's it all about and why should you care?
I'm sure you've heard that (now), it doesn't matter whether you define your business as B2B or B2C - it's all about ‘P2P’ (Peer to Peer). Brand advocacy is not a new concept, but with this shift in approach to business identity, it’s more important than ever. A brand advocate is a person or customer who talks favourably about your brand or product(s), and shares positive messages (both online & offline) about your brand to other people. Social Media is the perfect place for you to identify and engage with existing customers, gain new ones and turn fans into advocates.
What are the benefits of positive Brand Advocacy?
Brand advocates create and curate more than twice as many communications about a brand than the average web user, they are seasoned pros when it comes to writing meaningful content and sharing it on highly visible sites. The benefits include:
- Boosting your search ratings through positive reviews around your products and services - real customer stories/experiences also improves your reputation.
- Additional, far-reaching content - through blogs, reviews etc (earned media) boosts your SEO ranking.
- The more discussion there is about your brand, the bigger the opportunity becomes to learn about your customer experiences and get involved in the conversation.
- Investing in advocates will give your company the biggest bang for its buck. If you have a total impressions target you want to hit, investing in advocates can be the most efficient way to get there.
- If activated and appreciated, advocates are less likely to switch brands. This is intuitive, the more emotionally invested one is in your brand, the greater the “switching cost” is to go elsewhere.
How can you increase Brand Advocacy?
Brand advocates feed on engagement from your brand and there are some great ways to connect and engage with fans and potential advocates:
- Know where your audience is (social media, blogs, forums etc) and get involved with existing conversations around your brand.
- Tweet, Share, Comment, Retweet and Like - but be human in your tone of voice! This helps to build genuine relationships.
- Provide incentives for customers/fans to make repeat purchases and give them a positive experience.
- Encourage advocates to share with their peers/friends/readers, this can be incentivised too.
- Offer exclusive product previews, make your advocates feel special!
- Blogger outreach campaigns are another great way to connect with relevant online communities, increase your online reach and engage Key Opinion Leaders.