Last week, we outlined how you can identify your brand advocates. Now that you’ve found them, how do you harness the power of brand advocacy and grow an army of brand advocates? In a word, engagement. Here are 5 great ways to engage your brand advocates:
1. Offer Incentives. Incentivizing people is a surefire way to get them to participate more often and more passionately. Give your brand advocates extra incentives to make repeat purchases. Referral programs are a great way to incentivize your advocates to share information about your brand and recommend you to their friends and family.
2. Offer Exclusives. People love being a part of a club that is only open to a select few, so offer your brand advocates exclusives like discounts or free shipping to get them excited about your upcoming sale or marketing campaign. This will increase the likelihood that they will make a repeat purchase, purchase more than they had intended, and build more loyalty for your brand.
3. Give Them Sneak Peeks. Everyone loves being the first person to discover something. We all have come across those people who say things like, “I knew about that band before they became famous.” Capitalize on this by giving your advocates sneak peeks at new products you are developing. Ask for their input to show you value their feedback.
4. Recognize Your Advocates. Who doesn’t love receiving praise? No one. Recognizing your advocates can go a long way in strengthening the relationship with your brand. Thank them publicly in your social profiles (be sure to tag or @mention them to make sure they see your post) or send them a handwritten note, thanking them for their support. When acknowledging an advocate, make sure to leave out pitches or any promotional verbiage about your brand, focus solely on thanking the advocate.
5. Ask for Their Input. Your advocates regularly interact with you in your social profiles, buy your products, recommend you to their friends and family, and generally love your brand. Who better to help curate new content for your social profiles and contribute user-generated content? Encourage your brand advocates to share stories on your Facebook wall and share photos of themselves using your products in Instagram. Or better yet, start a Pinterest Group Board so they can directly add content they like to your Pinterest profile.
What are some ways you engage with your brand advocates and cultivate relationships with your customers? Share your stories in the comments below.