Brand Fan Marketing Strategy
How to identify, nurture, reward, monitor and amplify the comments made by your Brand Fans. 14 specific recommendations for creating your Brand Fan Marketing Strategy.
Brand Fans are like a free sales force. No, they're better than a sales force because their recommendations are seen to be unbiased and untainted. They're authentic. They're believable. They should be treated like influential bloggers and reporters.
Customer Brand Fans like sharing information for sharing’s sake, but that’s not their only motivation. Figuring out what to offer them can be tricky. Some might respond to discounts, others might find that a bribe. Other Brand Fans will appreciate public recognition and others who get that may feel used. No one wants to feel forced to cheerlead.
Here's an example of what a brand fan posted on Facebook.
Brand Fans do this for services, products and people they love. It's beyond brand loyalty. It's brand advocacy.
Brand Fans may voice criticism or concern, as well. When they do, that should raise a huge red flag to be investigated.
The result of creating and nurturing Brand Fans? More proponents out there sharing meaningful, authentic soundbites about "why buy" the Brand and more credible defenders when others share questions or criticism of the brand.
How to Create Your Brand Fan Marketing Strategy
- Brand Fans explains how to identify your Brand Fans
- Customer Segmentation - learn more about customer segmentation and how to use it to sell more and spend your marketing budget more wisely
2. Thank your Brand Fans in a timely and personal way
Call them or send them a handwritten note. Send them flowers. Invite them to lunch. Do something so they are recognized and rewarded for their behavior! Contact them within a few days, not several weeks later.
People do more of what they get recognized and rewarded for.
If you want a Brand Fan to make more positive posts on social media, thank them for the ones they've already made.
Don't offer to pay them for these as that cheapens their recommendation and they're not doing it to get a financial reward. Instead, treat them like a VIP. Give them special treatment, perks and acknowledgement that you appreciate their business and their referrals.
3. Make it easy for people to share
Add buttons on your website and blog like these and ask people to share. Hey, if you're reading this article on MarketingZone and like it, please tell others...
4. Social media monitoring
Social media monitoring will help you learn what's shared online in public forums, on blogs, on Twitter and on websites about you, your company, and your competitors. Social media monitoring is also useful for identifying trends and learning who the people are who are your "brand fans." In the "old days" there were clipping services. Now there are amazing tools that gather and capture the relevant information you want about what's being said about your company, your brands, your competitors and even individual people.
- Social Media Monitoring is a how-to guide that explains how this works
Are you identifying, nurturing and empowering Brand Fans who are referring new business to you?
5. Identify and tag people as your Brand Fans in your customer database
Just add a field in your database or excel spreadsheet to note the person is a Brand Fan or take it a step further and identify what type of Brand Fan they are.
Malcolm Gladwell’s book The Tipping Point describes three types of people who share positive word-of-mouth. You might use this as a way to classify your Brand Fans if you know them well enough to tell whether they are a:
Connector. Connectors are people who have lots of varied connections to different types of people and act as human bridges to help others make connections and "cross-pollinate" information and ideas. They don't get paid to do this. They just do this for free. It's how they operate.
Mavens are people who like to be seen as experts and help other people make informed decisions. They're the "go to" people and "smart friends" and "experts" who people seek out.
Salesmen, as defined by Gladwell, are not people paid by a company to sell the products/services. These are people who are persuasive in selling, inducing others’ to do or buy something. In social media, these "salesmen" (and women) do this for free. They're like a free sales force if you can harness them to recommend and advocate your product, company or services.
Next page -
steps 6-14 of creating your Brand Fan marketing Strategy
Customer Satisfaction & Loyalty
- Create Customer Contact Plans
- Understand Customer Lifecycles
- Sell More to Existing Customers
- Identify Most Profitable Customers
- Customer Retention
- Treat Customers like VIPs
- Improve Customer Satisfaction
- Improve Patient Satisfaction
- Fire Difficult Customers
- Deal With Customer Complaints
- Manage Your Online Reputation
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