Customer advocacy: frequently asked questions

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I’ve gathered the most frequently asked customer advocacy asked questions on the web. Here are those much needed, most up-to-date answers. It’s a hard life understanding this customer advocacy stuff, so let’s make it easy!

What is a customer advocacy program?

When you are considering how to generate customer advocacy you need to think about how you’re going to track things, how to measure success, and who might become a customer advocate. You do this by creating a customer advocacy program. An advocacy program is set-up much like a sales pipeline. If you’ll excuse the analogy, the reason it’s useful to talk about it in this way is because it’s a process that includes: qualifying customers to see if they’ll be good potential advocates, building relationships to move them through your program (or pipeline) and then generating great content together (which feels like closing a deal!).

The ultimate goal is to create a group of advocates who just love to talk about your company publicly as far and wide as possible. Studies show that without a structured customer advocacy program it’ll cost ya in both time and effort. You’ll end up asking the same customers too often or too much for the same thing!

What is the role of a customer advocate?

A customer advocate can help your business to generate more interest in what you’re selling. Sounds a little heartless? Well no, it’s about the way you go about it. Creating a genuine sense of community will mean your customer advocates are fully bought into not only what you’re selling, but your companies ethos and future! HubSpot with the help of Forrestor research wrote The Plain-English Guide to Customer Advocacy. In this guide, they discuss the way to reward your customer advocates in order to have meaningful relationships and create an increased sense of customer community.

How do you drive customer advocacy?

You drive advocacy by having a structured program AND by creating a genuine sense of community for your customers. I created my own model to showcase how to get started driving advocacy:

Although this model is a tad basic, the principles are all here.

Step 1: Create great customer content

Create great customer marketing content: highlighting the benefits of using your company or purchasing your product. Think about how you can encourage customers to feel part of your community!

Step 2: they feel like part of the community

After providing awesome customer service, a great product and all this amazing customer content they’ll start to feel the benefits of working with you. At this point, you’ll know if that customer seems ready to give back to the community!

Step 3: Entering the customer advocacy program

At the point where your customers feel the benefits you can start including those customers in your customer advocacy program or pipeline, asking them to participate in activities in a structure way.

What is an example of client advocacy?

Well, there are lots of examples of client advocacy, and they are all around you. Notably, B2C companies are much better at it than most B2B. Nonetheless here are a couple of awesome examples:

Vodfone: #KeepingTheUKConnected

Microsoft: Meet robotic arm inventor Easton LaChappelle
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