Customer advocacy means putting clients first and adjusting your product or services according to their needs and desires. A study conducted by the Wharton School of Business shows that 83% of satisfied customers would be willing to refer products or services they appreciated.
If you want to improve customer advocacy and turn every business relationship into a long-lasting one, we will guide you through the necessary steps.
Customer advocacy represents a company’s constant effort to find, implement the best solutions for their customers’ needs, and support them throughout their journey.
The customer advocacy concept is focused on meeting client expectations and anticipating new ones. This way, you’ll be able to create custom-made solutions for their problems and deliver a complete customer experience that is going to differentiate your company from the competition.
Customers don’t just go for features or prices when they choose a product. They want the full package: excellent customer care, occasional discounts, tailor-made offers, and seamless communication. Customer advocacy covers all that, plus more.
Customer advocacy fuels company growth. Staying focused on how you can improve your customers’ experiences with your brand has the following benefits:
Here is how your company can increase customer advocacy with the resources you already have at your disposal:
Your company’s efforts to optimize the client journey will never stop. Here are a few ways to increase customer advocacy, plus examples from companies that are already doing these things very well.
Personalization starts with subject lines and ends… well, never. Marketing is no longer about emphasizing product qualities and leaving out possible downsides. It’s about creating and telling the story your clients want to hear.
This includes every type of client communication: welcoming messages, loyalty discount campaigns, drip emails, tutorials, any type of content you can customize according to the user’s profile.
How do you get an accurate profile of your typical customer? You map a buyer persona, which is a detailed description of your target audience. After you’ve completed this process through extensive research, the next step is targeting your “ideal customers” with customized campaigns on more personal notes.
Grammarly offers a great personalization model. The company sends weekly emails that are directly linked to the user’s writing style and performance. The reports include frequent errors, the latest milestones the user has reached, and possible weak spots to improve upon.
How do I connect with my clients on a more personal level?
You trace a map of their customer journey and ask yourself questions like:
Knowing their needs at a specific point in time will let you predict what they want in the future. TextMagic carefully considered every piece of client feedback and gradually introduced product features clients requested. In time, this led to the development of our new product, Touchpoint, which offers businesses a complete customer engagement platform, making it easier for you to listen and communicate with your customers.
Turn every reference you get from your clients into something meaningful.
Get any type of information related to your product. It doesn’t matter what format it comes in.
One-on-one client conversations are also useful because they offer more insights on very specific needs that you might not be aware of. Give clients a chance to tell you how they feel about your business and they will feel more valued. Plus, chances are that at least a few other customers will relate to the challenges that they are facing, making it easier for them to relate to your brand.
Now that we covered the theoretical part, let’s look at a great customer advocacy example that illustrates how appreciation can become your company’s best business card:
Okta turned an annual event into a celebration of its customers. Their marketing team encouraged their audience to mention they were attending their event on social media. They didn’t stop there: before the main event, they held a special lunch and offered personalized takeaways to engage their loyal clients.
A nice gesture now and then can leave a lasting impression. In their case, we’re talking about 1.1 million social impressions generated by their clients and a 34% increase in engagement rates.
Social listening is a very simple process that involves monitoring all social media channels to find discussions about your brand, what users think of it, what they’d like changed, etc.
It’s not just about your products or brand in particular; useful insights include discussions about your competition and, more broadly, the industry. You are looking for recurring consumer trends or buying behaviors, as well as what triggers them.
Social listening is powerful, effective, and costs practically nothing. You can use it to both identify your company’s strong suits and weak spots. It answers questions like:
Every question you answer will significantly improve customer experience and increase the chances of turning a regular customer into lifetime advocates. Social media advocacy is all about collecting feedback from every channel you can think of and engaging potential clients in a relationship that is mutually beneficial.
Customer feedback is not always extremely actionable. Some customers offer very generic opinions or deviate into other topics when asked about a certain brand. The key to collecting relevant feedback is asking the right questions.
Be as specific as possible. Ask for timeframes, location, context. A question like “How do you feel about our product?” won’t do. Instead, focus on specifics:
You can steer clients in the right direction whenever you feel like their answers are too generic, but don’t make them feel like their answers weren’t enough to begin with. Encourage them to share more of their experience using positive phrasing: “This sounds really interesting. Would you like to tell us more about how this product made an impact?”
Asking for specific details will result in more detailed answers, plus it tells the customer that their opinion matters—a prize in its own right.
The NPS (Net Promoter Score) calculator is a great tool any company can use to measure customer loyalty and satisfaction. We constantly send out NPS surveys to TextMagic clients and use their feedback to improve our product. It is a simple and effective way to collect relevant information that makes clients heard and valued for their input.
Like it or not, customer service matters in your customer’s journey. It is also your most valuable source of information for improving your product.
Clients turn to customer service to signal product malfunction, complaints, requests, which they can use to improve significantly both your product and the way you communicate with your clients.
How do you take customer service from mediocre to top-rated? Here are a few pointers on how to improve communication across all channels:
Customers often feel more satisfied when they feel someone is working on a solution instead of just handing them a spur-of-the-moment solution, which the customer may see as a temporary fix for a problem that is only going to get worse.
Customer advocacy is your company’s best shot at securing long-lasting business relationships with their best brand ambassadors. It is a long-term investment in your own business and a gift that keeps on giving, provided you never lose sight of what your customers want.
Raluca Mocanu is a copywriter at Touchpoint and began her content writing journey in 2016. She loves traveling, reading, on-stage drama and recently discovered a deep interest in psychology.
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Customer expectations are defined by what the customer wants from a product, service, or organization. Find out how you can identify and manage these expectations.
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