Word of mouth is probably the oldest form of marketing out there. And despite years of innovation, it’s still one of the most effective ways of increasing brand awareness and converting customers.
Affiliate marketing, which is a booming industry, is essentially about individuals promoting a product or service through word of mouth. While the technology has moved on – these affiliates are generally speaking to people over social media platforms like YouTube rather than talking with friends or neighbours – the principle remains the same.
So how do you turn your customers into brand ambassadors, in order to build credibility with a wider audience? We’ve listed five of the top ways below!
1. Build Up Your Audience Through Conversation
With social media platforms in particular, the best way to increase your followers is through engaging with people. This can be a time consuming process, as you often have to be proactive, following like minded pages and commenting on people’s posts, but it’s undoubtedly a worthwhile one.
If people feel like you’re really listening to them, and you’re able to have proper conversations with them via social platforms, you’re bound to build up a loyal community. Social media is also a great place to show a bit more of your organisation’s personality, and the people behind the company. People connect with other people, not corporations, so try to include individual names when posting and responding. You don’t have to use your real name if you don’t want to – you can use a pseudonym.
When it comes to generating more engagement online, try posting things that invite a conversion – perhaps something slightly controversial. Or invite people to tag their friends if they think they’ll like the content. One of the best ways to encourage people to repost and like your content is to offer an incentive – maybe consider running a competition where people need to follow you or share posts in order to compete.
2. Ask Consumers to Contribute Content
Another way to get people to engage with your page is to ask them to share content. This doesn’t have to be anything substantial, like a guest blog, though that is something you may wish to consider. You can simply ask users to post pictures of them using your products, and tag you in them.
With user generated content, your brand gets recognition, and your followers feel like they are part of a wider community. Such posts furthermore make your social feed more interesting – rather than endless content from your company, others will be contributing too.
3. Ask for reviews
While you don’t want to sound like you’re begging people for positive feedback, don’t be afraid to ask your customers for reviews or testimonials. There are a few great ways to go about this – via your newsletters, for instance, or with purchase confirmation emails.
Having a page on Trustpilot or a similar independent review site is also a good idea – although you’re not able to control the feedback you receive through this sort of platform, other users know that the reviews are only moderated by the host, not the businesses themselves. They are therefore more likely to believe positive comments!
Another tip for generating reviews and testimonials is making it part of a competition. As with building your audience, most people want some sort of incentive to contribute, so offering a prize is a surefire way to get loads of feedback!
4. consider a referral scheme
It may sound a little repetitive at this point, but rewarding people gets results. Ask your customers to refer a friend via a referral scheme, and incentivise them through free products or services, or perhaps a discount on a future purchase.
Your referral scheme can be as complicated as you like – you may simply wish to reward loyalty via gift vouchers, or you could opt for an entire affiliate network. Whatever you decide, just make sure you shout about it – you want everyone to know they’ll be rewarded for promoting your brand and what you have to offer.
5. go above and beyond
In order to stand out from your competition, you need to go the extra mile. If you receive something more than the service or product on offer, such as a free gift, discounts for your birthday or a signing up bonus, you’re going to be impressed. So offering your customers the same things should ensure that they get behind your brand and become advocates for your business.
If you’re not sure where to start when it comes to delighting your customers, the best thing to do is review your customer journey. Consider all the touch points, from initially visiting your site to the end of the purchase process, and see where you can make improvements.
building your brand
Satisfied repeat customers are not only more cost effective than generating new customers, they can also promote your brand, and become loyal advocates. This in turn can mean better reach for your business, generating more traffic, and the cycle continues!
You should therefore never underestimate the power of customer loyalty, feedback and engagement – it can make a huge difference to your revenue and growth. To learn more about building your brand and other digital marketing strategies, get in touch with The Pineapple Agency today!