Customer Advocacy: time to adapt and evolve

person holding a green plant

Are you thinking about what the world is going to be like after the pandemic is over? I would say 99% of us are considering what is going to happen to our jobs, homes, loved ones. Will life ever return to “normality”, will the economy stabilise and will the tidal wave of recession that’s about to hit destroy everything? Gloomy isn’t it. How will customer advocacy find its place in this new world.

Now, as gloomy as it is, we need to start making plans, both professionally and personally. Do you want to be one of the people swept aside when the tide turns or do you want to be on the front-line prepared for a battle? If 2008 was anything to go by, it’ll be a battle.

*Flashback* It’s 2008, I’m 19 years old, I have my first “proper” job and before I know it the word recession is a new word in my vocabulary. Consequently at a company wide Christmas meal, our CEO, while carving the turkey, decides to tell us we’re getting pay freezes and redundancies might follow. Care-free it didn’t mean much at the time, I’d never had money, so I didn’t know what it would feel like to not be paid anymore for nearly four years. Which is what it ended up being! Now I’m older and wiser I realise the damage that four years without a pay-rise did to my financial stability as an adult.

Customer advocacy needs to evolve

Fast-forward twelves years and we are about to slip into something altogether more frightening, or does is have to be? Our businesses are going to need to evolve and so are we as advocacy and marketing specialists. We’ve got to start looking ahead to how we are going to try to adapt to a new world order. The truth is, some of us will be able to and some of us just won’t.

We are on the verge of institutional industry giants tumbling before us, while the giants suffer, we’ll start to see the green shoots of creativity and innovation growing. We have a choice to make here. Are we going to change the way we do things or are we going to cling on while we watch things fall down around us?

We have to change how we work with customers

It’s fair to say that as part of this new world order advocacy and customer marketing are going to be even more important. As we see backlash at those companies treating both their people and customers badly we aren’t going to forget that post pandemic. We are already moving towards a more ethical and moral form of consumerism and we’re about to take a bigger leap towards that.

Community based advocacy and customer marketing approaches and mutually beneficial partnerships have got to be our focus. We can’t just ask customers for “stuff” anymore, we’re going to need to think outside of the box or our function won’t exist. The customer voice will become the predominate form of marketing as consumers look to other customers for a mark of approval. We’ve been heading in this direction, but we are going to need to propel ourselves forward further still.

I’m personally excited to see the changes that will occur and I’m ready for it – are you?

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