Marketing is one of the ways through which your business generates sales by creating awareness of its products or services. There are many marketing strategies, both traditional and digital, that businesses utilize. However, the industry sees regular changes and shifts that affect how audiences respond to marketing.
If your business fails to move with the trends, it’s easy to be overtaken by competitors keeping up with the industry shifts. One of the leading marketing strategies that can give you a competitive edge today is advocacy marketing.
In this article, you get to take a look at what it is and how your business can start a successful advocacy marketing campaign.
What Is Advocacy Marketing
This marketing strategy seeks to utilize the audience you already have to share brand, product, or service experience with their networks. They do this through their social media platforms, word of mouth, or positive reviews. It’s a powerful marketing strategy that increases brand awareness and reaches. This results in more sales, revenue, and an improved brand reputation.
When you have advocates, whether customers or employees, constantly creating awareness for your brand, you have better chances of increasing and retaining your customer base. Moreover, when leveraging tools like brand ambassador management software, you can collect the shared data from various platforms and effectively use it to benefit the business.
Steps For Starting An Advocacy Marketing Campaign
If you’re thinking about incorporating advocacy marketing in your marketing strategy, here’s the seven-step guide on how to get started.
- Establish The Aim Of The Campaign
Before you start the marketing campaign, ask yourself what the campaign’s end goal is and how that matches your overall brand vision. Your brand’s vision and mission will help you find a suitable plan for your brand advocates. You’ll see them as marketing agents and valuable components that help improve the brand instead of sales representatives.
- Select Your Advocates
This next necessary step is the selection of your marketing advocates. Ensure you focus on those who love your brand and can boldly share about it. However, note that not every enthusiastic customer can excel in campaigning for your brand.
Here are ways to help you figure this process out:
- Create an experimental marketing campaign to see those customers that stand out and can be helpful to advocates.
- Use a loyalty program to see those who keep coming back and approach them to help promote your brand.
- Create a social community to increase followers and see your top fans who you can approach to be your brand advocates.
- Use surveys to get insights into the actual state of how the market perceives your brand, products, or services. You may also encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews.
- Set Up Your Advocates For Success
It would be a terrible mistake to assume that your brand advocates will initiate brand promotion each time. Advocates need a bit of nudging to publicly promote your brand regardless of how happy they may be with your brand. It’s not that you need to micro-manage your advocates, but you need to give them direction to make the campaign effective.
Advocacy marketing can only work if there’s a sustainable process in place. Here are some things you can try:
- Have some ground rules
- Have an incentive program for your advocates
- Have proper channels of tracking valuable advocacy content for business use
- Keep advocates well informed
- Develop a good partnership with your advocates
- Involve Your Employees
Any marketing program requires a team effort, and advocacy marketing is no exception. The program will be more successful if you involve the sales and marketing team, as well as customer service representatives as program overseers. These team members are best placed to give an honest perspective of how the marketing program is working.
- Keep Your Focus On Your Customers
Don’t forget to keep your focus on your audience and emphasize building a lasting relationship with them. This is crucial to the success of your advocacy campaign, customer acquisition, retention, and increased sales. The digital age allows users to show their love for brands they engage with publicly. You can validate their feelings by publicly acknowledging them, making them a part of the brand.
Brand advocates will reach out to potential customers, but you should take the initiative and communicate with them. This is how you build a relationship. By giving them more, you can encourage engagement.
- Build Brand Engagement And Love
To build brand love, you first have to give value to your audience. You’ll be making your brand sellable and workable for your brand advocates easier. This means product development should be a top priority in building brand love.
In addition, always be on the lookout for ways to keep your audience engaged. Create fresh, useful, and authentic content. This also helps your brand advocates in sharing and showcasing your brand in their networks.
- Keep Track Of The Campaign Progress
Measuring success is part of a successful marketing campaign. You need to understand the extent of the reach of the advocacy campaign. Ensure to have clarity on:
- Who’s generating your brand content?
- What are they developing and sharing with their followers?
- Where is the content being shared?
- Why are they generating content on your brand?
- When do their followers engage most?
You’ll gain accurate insights on who’s working, what, where, why, and when with proper analytics. This knowledge helps show what areas you need to focus on.
Starting a brand advocacy campaign is all about creating and maintaining relationships with your audience. Keeping up communication with them makes the brand experience exceptional. It also makes your brand advocates more likely to share and encourage others to do the same.