Whenever a company delights its buyers with quality products, praiseworthy services or surprise discounts, it receives free word-of-mouth publicizing which later earns more customers. Would you like to convert your customers into your greatest advocates?
Turns out, the simplest way of promoting one’s brand is by inspiring one’s clients to be advocates of goodwill. By willingly vouching for the business, both formally and informally, the amount of publicity generated will be enough to usurp the number of impact competitors may have left.
As per a report presented by IDC research on the same in 2016, a modest 10% of all B2B companies captured in the survey had customer advocacy initiative. In 2017, however, the figures had shot to 67%, which simply speaks a lot about the present day access to information and unprecedented transparency.
Evolution of Voluntary Customer Advocacy
Naturally, unhappy customers tend to air their frustrations about a past unpleasant experience. However, as the numbers above report, it seems the trend could be changing. And much as the clients appear as the winners, businesses that offer better customer experience rapid revenue growth. If the enjoyable treatment continues, the amount of advocacy invariably multiplies, thus getting the seller more revenue.
Buyers tend to trust the opinion of their peers and junior employees with nobody seemingly buying the voice of the CEOs. As many as 62% of customers would love to know how real people, including those who belong to their level say. And if a brand harnesses the voice of the customer, it can market itself without necessarily spending a dime!
Here’s how to subtly solicit for advocacy from your customers
If you’re an entrepreneur of a B2B or B2C startup, gaining an advocate might not be easy. Sure, you could be boasting satisfaction stats, great customer engagement and growing base of ardent customers.
To create the stories and eventually foster advocacy, try to work from outside – do the following:
Find and publicize useful data: when a customer understands the full benefit of a product or service rendered by you, the person will be more inclined to appreciate it and later recommending others. Naturally, it can take over 18 months for someone to be confident enough to recommend you. However, by publicizing the useful aspects of your product or service, a client can begin advocating sooner.
Empower employees to deliver warm customer experience consistently: this isn’t trivial because – more they provide on their word, the more powerful the advocacy becomes. Empowering them would mean starting from revolutionizing their look, tone, and mood of their interactions and everything that can change their attitude about the business into a pleasant one.
Leverage technology to scale advocacy: references and referrals given online matter a lot, mainly because they’re offered by those who you’ve never met.
Finally, stick to your real identity – don’t fake your reviews: buyers tend to accept a referral offered by someone they know rather than a paid marketer. Since customers can advocate for a company they’ve interacted with, don’t try to buy the review. By delivering according to your promise, valuable experiences will give customers a reason to suggest you to somebody else.
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In the end, customers are more inclined to advocate for a company that valued them to a friend. So, as you engage in other forms of marketing, don’t forget to tap into word-of-mouth marketing too, after all, it’s cheaper, faster and even more effective!