Turn Customers into Advocates

What if every time your company made a sale, you automatically made another? Would that make a big difference to your bottom line?

If so, it’s worth learning how you can turn customers into advocates for your brand. It all comes down to the customer experience your company provides.

Turning customers into brand advocates will not only improve profits, it will give you an army of loyal supporters who will promote your brand to others, too. Best of all, they’ll do this for free, as long as you use the following three strategies to create these advocates in the first place:

1. Start Things Off on the Right Foot

We all know that first impressions are important. This is especially true if you hope to turn customers into advocates. Positive customer experiences don’t just lead to further spending. They also prime these customers to go out and tell others how pleased they were with their transactions, which is exactly what you want an advocate to do.

There are countless ways you can create a positive customer experience, but, according to Sixteen Ventures, effortless onboarding is essential. The first experience a customer has with your product/service tends to be the one they remember, so work hard to make it as easy and straightforward as possible.

2. Support Customers Long After They Make a Purchase

Once a customer finishes their purchase, keep them engaged in your business.

To build a strong relationship, use an email marketing platform that helps them make the most out of your product or service. This might require just a single message or it may involve many. The most important thing is that you provide customers with helpful product information and customer support. This is not about spamming them or hitting them with hard sales pitches. It’s about providing them with information that’s relevant to their interests.

The next step is to use a survey to find potential promoters among your list. You can ask any number of questions, but the one we’re most interested in is, “How likely are you to recommend this product/service to others?”

Using a scale from 1 to 10, Medallia’s Net Promoter Score identifies promoters as those who respond with a 9 or a 10. You can put these potential promoters into a new funnel that introduces them to your company’s affiliate program.

3. Leverage Social Media – Even the Bad

Grow your social media presence and you’ll grow your opportunities to turn customers into advocates. You just need to pay attention to what people are saying about your brand.

Obviously, any time you receive praise, you want to share it with the rest of the world to increase social proof. However, you should also reach out to those praise-providers and learn more about why they love your product. These people are already advocating for your products, so finding out what got them to do so can be helpful in creating other advocates in the future.

On the other hand, you may also run into negativity on social media. This can be an opportunity. Gary Vaynerchuk famously dealt with negative reviews about one of his first books by responding to almost every one of them and even offering a refund. While this definitely took a lot of work on his part, it also brought a lot of positive attention and gave happy customers one more reason to recommend his book.

Don’t Stop at the Sale

Winning over a new customer is always a reason to celebrate, but don’t stop there. The more you can turn customers into advocates, the easier – and more affordable – it is to create new customers in the future. Fortunately, it only takes some strategic planning and tactful use of social media to begin this profitable process.