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Turning customers into advocates isn’t always easy. It requires dedication, planning, execution, and a genuine level of care.
What business doesn’t love getting new customers?
Did you know that acquiring new customers can cost five times more than retaining an existing customer?
Yes, new customers are undoubtedly exciting, but businesses don’t succeed based on a never-ending supply of new customers. True growth in business comes from customer retention and turning customers into advocates.
But how do you turn customers into advocates?
What is a brand advocate?
A brand advocate is a customer who spreads positive word of mouth about your business on social media and offline. Brand advocates are so passionate about your products and services that they often influence purchasing decisions.
Now that we understand what a brand advocate is, let’s explore 7 methods for turning customers into advocates.
1. Focus your attention on the platforms your customers actually use
To turn customers into advocates, you must put in the effort on multiple social media platforms. Yes, multiple.
With such a diverse social media landscape, gone are the days when creating a Facebook page was all you needed to do regarding social media marketing.
However, it’s essential to remember that you don’t have to be on every social media platform that pops up. Why not try running a poll on your Instagram account, asking your followers about their favourite social media platforms?
To turn customers into advocates, you must do it with an active and engaged following. Otherwise, all you’re doing is screaming into the digital void.
2. Understand your customer journey
The best way to minimise customer pain points is to experience them yourself and make the necessary adjustments.
Planning your customer journey is one of the most effective ways to ensure every one of your customers has a smooth and pain-free experience when purchasing from your brand.
You can’t expect the process of turning customers into advocates to be easy. Take the time to focus on the experience; they’ll be singing your praises in no time.
3. Nail your onboarding process
While this next point is technically part of your customer journey, it’s so crucial that it warrants its own section.
You’ve surely heard the saying you only get one chance to make a good first impression. It’s true in life, and it’s true in business.
If what you do requires customers to be brought up to speed to get started (and this can be as simple as filling in their contact information), it’s crucial that this process is easy and doesn’t frustrate people.
How can you expect to turn customers into advocates if they never become customers in the first place?
4. Loyalty programs
You’ll have to show loyalty to customers if you want brand loyalty in return.
From discounts when customers join your mailing list to something as simple as offering birthday discounts, there are so many things you can do to make your loyalty program appealing.
In addition to your loyalty program, you should also consider implementing a referral program, allowing customers to recommend your product to other people in return for incentives.
5. Encourage user-generated content
If customers are buying your product, depending on the product, there’s a good chance they will want to show it off on social media.
While some customers will do this independently because they love your products and services, others will need some encouragement.
6. Make your customers feel special
You only have to look as far as the rapid rise of Patreon to understand that people love exclusive content.
We aren’t suggesting you put exclusive content behind a paywall. However, if your content has enough diversity, it’s worth looking into. If you want your customers to feel special, try to do it without asking them. They’ll appreciate getting exclusives for free.
7. Embrace customer feedback
Whether it’s good, bad, or constructive, all feedback is valuable to your brand.
Many businesses dread negative reviews, and it’s for a good reason. While we aren’t saying negative reviews are an ideal outcome, they do present an opportunity to be proactive, get on the front foot, and display your customer service in a public forum.
Every business likes to say they offer exceptional customer service, but how many actually walk the walk?