Creating Brand Advocates for Your Company

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What Is a Brand Advocate?

A brand advocate is a person who promotes a brand of their own accord (not paid by the company) usually by word of mouth. This person is a customer who had good experiences with a company and feel it’s important to share these encounters.

Think of a brand advocate like someone who recommends a movie they enjoyed. They have no incentive to get you to watch the film (they’re not paid by the film studio) but they think you’ll enjoy it. Usually, recommendations from friends get more credit than do recommendations from critics and professional reviewers. This is why companies aim to create brand advocates with each campaign.

An animation of online reviews and ratings.
People listen to recommendations and advice from their peers.

How Do You Create a Brand Advocate?

There isn’t one specific way to ensure a customer will advocate for your brand. However, here are some key methods that increase the odds dramatically.

Find ways to support important causes

It doesn’t matter what your product or service is, you can get involved in helping in areas your market cares deeply about. Maybe your company could organize and fund a community garden or raise money for people in need. Whatever the cause, make sure it’s something you truly believe in.

This not only promotes something positive, it increases the chance of brand advocacy. A customer with lukewarm feelings about your brand may have a totally new perspective toward it when they realize you both fight for the same social issues. They’re much more likely to promote your brand to people they care about.

A person giving food to a needy person.
Promote issues that interest your target market.

Build strong relationships

By putting your best foot forward during all marketing campaigns and customer service interactions, your company gives itself the best chance to build lasting relationships with customers. This is an important step in successful brand management. A customer who feels they have a good relationship with your company is likely to promote your brand to others.

One powerful way of accomplishing this is by making customers feel like insiders. When you share details, your company shows themselves to be a trustworthy brand. This can be accomplished with insightful newsletters, emails or other methods.

A businessman shakes hand with another.
Build solid relationships to promote advocacy.

Why Are Brand Advocates Significant?

You should attempt to gain as many brand advocates as possible because of the numerous ways they help build your company. The most important reason is the effectiveness of their advocacy. Research has shown that prospects listen to advice from friends, family and colleagues more than any other source. Therefore, the more brand advocates you have, the more likely you’ll gain customers.

Another reason brand advocates are so important is they’re a free way to advertise and spread your brand organically. They’re essentially an asset that requires no upkeep. Keep this in mind when looking at ways to stand out in company advertisements.

Monitor the ways your company is perceived and which types of people it’s influencing others. The more brand advocates you gain, the better off you’ll be.

Casey Schmidt – Content Manager and Industry Expert | Canto

Casey Schmidt is a content manager at Canto who enjoys taking complex subjects and making them easy to understand for readers.