Advocacy Coach’s Corner: A Little Feedback Can Go A Long Way

Your advocates are already fans of your company and they want to help. Unfortunately, they’re not always sure of the best ways to help or how much impact their advocacy is actually having behind the scenes.

That’s why you need to show a little TLC to ensure advocates feel appreciated and stay engaged.

They may have joined your advocate marketing program because they like your product or services. Rewards, perks and fun challenges will keep them interested. But they’ll continue to advocate for you over the long-term because of the relationship they’ve built with you.

Moving dayLook at this way: You wouldn’t ask someone you just met at a party to help you move next weekend, but you know your friends would do it in a heartbeat because they actually want to help you (and maybe because they were promised free pizza).

The same applies to your advocate marketing program. You reach out to your customers, ask them to join and thank them when they do. Just like that, you’ve created a sense of community. Then, you can get to know even better them through a series of smaller, simple interactions.

And when you ask them to move that couch – or the B2B marketing equivalent, such as submitting a referral or participating in a case study – they won’t think twice about doing some heavy lifting.

The great news? It doesn’t take a lot to show your advocates you care. It can be as simple as saying thank you or finding a fun way to acknowledge their participation.

Communicate, communicate, communicate

Location may be king in real estate, but for customer engagement, communication trumps all else. There’s nothing worse than feeling like your efforts are wasted, especially if you’re an advocate responding to a request from a company you love.

As an advocate marketer or AdvocateHub administrator, it’s a good idea to respond to comments you’ve received in challenges or send a personalized message after you see an advocate do multiple activities in the hub at once.

You can even send some extra points their to encourage them. Whatever you do, don’t let your hardworking army feel like they’re getting funneled into a big black hole!

Show you’re listening

Your advocates spend a ton of time sending you feedback and coming up with ideas. Don’t just TELL them you’ve read their comments – SHOW them that you received their input and you consider it valuable.

It’s as simple as turning their ideas into topics for a user group or webinar, or giving them early access to a new feature they requested.

Reward good behavior to keep it coming

Use perks, badges or a spot at the top of your leaderboard as little gifts to delight your advocates and keep them doing what they do best. For example, find out when their birthday is and send them a shout-out on Twitter.

Or set up a challenge to find out what their favorite Starbucks drink is and surprise them with a gift card.

ReadyTalk Summit Club birthday card

Here’s an example of a personal perk from ReadyTalk’s advocate marketing program, the Summit Club.

Better yet, show up at your next meeting with their triple-no-foam caramel soy latte in hand. Wouldn’t you love it if someone did that for you?

Close the feedback loop by keeping advocates in the loop

Nobody likes to be left behind. If an advocate helped on a reference call for a deal that’s closing, drop them a line to let them know – and don’t forget to say thank you.

You can also write about it in a customer newsletter or a community forum. You’ll not only give credit where credit is due, but publicly closing the feedback loop also helps other advocates see that it can happen to them.

People like to see their names in bright lights, so don’t be shy to crank up that spotlight.

If engagement starts to drop off…

  • Choose one advocate every day and do something small to make them feel special.
  • Make a schedule to create challenges and stick to it so your advocates know when new ones will pop up.
  • Launch a re-engagement campaign by creating a challenge that is only targeted to the advocates who have dropped off.

 

2 Responses to Advocacy Coach’s Corner: A Little Feedback Can Go A Long Way

  1. […] out to them to ask for their feedback on everything from your newest product release to your next marketing campaign. This will make […]

  2. […] more likely to promote the content they like rather than the company itself,” Jay says. Be very sensitive to their feedback and refine your approach based on their responses. (And don’t forget to respond to negative […]

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