3 Places To Find Your Most Engaged Customer Advocates

If you find enough fans and evangelists out there in the marketplace, you can create an advocate marketing program. That advocate marketing program can help you increase your brand recognition, turbocharge demand, and create pipeline for your sales team.

The first thing you’re going to need, of course, is active advocates. So where are you going to find customer advocates? There are three streams of advocates that can fuel your program and create a flood of advocacy for your company.

Stream #1: Your raving fans

 The first is your most obvious stream of advocates – the self-identified brand advocates in the marketplace today.

You know who these advocates are. They talk to analysts on your behalf, do media interviews, speak at events and let you do case studies about them.

They’re passionate about your vision and they’re happy to be part of this program. They’re going to be the critical core of your advocate marketing program, but they’re not enough. You need to add additional advocates to that program to make it work.

So how do you find them?

Stream #2: Customers connected to your colleagues

That’s stream number two. You can find it by walking the hallways of your organization because customers interact with your business in a variety of ways. To find those advocates, you must start by talking with others in your company.

Think about it: product management teams run beta programs and do user surveys. They’re a great source for finding advocates that could join your program.

Sales people always have references in their back pocket that they rely on as part of the sales process. They can identify advocates who can join the program as well.

Finally, don’t forget your customer success team. They’re the front lines in interacting with your customers and they can always identify customers that they’re coaching, educating or providing tech support to who come away enthusiastic and might become candidates for your advocate marketing program.

Stream #3: Your happiest and newest customers

Lastly, you need to build a pipeline of advocacy. It’s not enough to just identify a core group and run the program – you always want to be onboarding new advocates. How do you do that?

1. Net promoter score (NPS) program

If you run an NPS survey, you’re already measuring how satisfied your customers are with your product and services. Ask those who say they are satisfied to join the program and they’ll be more than willing to do so!

2. Customer onboarding process

When you first sign a customer, that’s likely the most enthusiastic they’ll ever be because they’re really excited to get started and be successful with your product or service. Talk to them about your advocate marketing program as you onboard them and see if they’d like to join.

Some innovative companies are even experimenting with onboarding customers through their advocate marketing software to start advocacy behavior from day one!

When you combine these three streams, these sources of advocacy, you’ll find that in no time you’ve got a flood of goodwill that’s helping to support your marketing programs.

Where do you find your best advocates? Share your tips in the comments section below!

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Photo credit: Rick Marshall