Social media has changed the way businesses operate and reach by bringing marketing to the forefront of every operation in an affordable and limitless way. Reaching a large target market no longer requires huge budgets or complex strategies that only professionals can understand. While these professionals may be useful for increasing overall reach and providing strategy, anyone interested in spreading their business message can do so; all it takes is creating a social media account or two.
There is a reason for this. Now more than ever, consumers want to be in touch with the companies they do business with. They want occasional recognition and to get to know the brand before making any buying decisions; they want a connection. Because social media exists based on these connections, it’s an excellent place to start marketing.
All it takes is a little creativity, coupled with the knowledge that a few satisfied, connected customers can do much more than a multi-million dollar marketing campaign — as long as the initial approach is right. Below are some ideas for building brand ambassadors through targeted social networking efforts.
Understanding Brand Ambassadors
While some brands go to great lengths to set up brand ambassador programs, it’s not always necessary – the definition of a brand ambassador is very broad and can vary from company to company. Simply put, a brand ambassador is anyone not directly associated with the brand – not employees – who spreads the brand’s message with enthusiasm. This could be a satisfied customer who shares a testimonial with their own network, someone who receives benefits for sharing (a discount code in most cases), or someone who goes so far as to refer customers to a particular brand based solely on them. own positive experience. The bottom line is this: satisfied customers or enthusiastic fans can become valuable brand ambassadors.
The best way to empower your community is by focus on connecting with it in the first place. This requires ongoing effort and commitment. Ask questions and encourage your fans and followers to answer. Respond to comments and questions posted on your wall. Favorite all Twitter mentions and retweet posts that mention your brand. By taking the time to get to know your community, you will be taking the first step towards building a brand ambassador.
By taking the time to provide special discounts and promotions to your community, you increase the likelihood that a purchase will be made – which, of course, contributes to a higher ROI. However, you are also showing your community that you value each member, and that you are willing to do your best to earn their loyalty. This increases shareability and, therefore, the ability to reach a larger audience.
Create Targeted Content
Content is the lifeblood of any brand looking to maximize the reach potential of social media. However, it is not the quantity that is important, but the quality. Set up online alerts related to your industry and stay up to date with what’s happening around the world. Think about how certain occurrences and events relate to your customers and about how that information motivates them. Build on this by creating content that is most likely to be popular – this is content that will be shared.
Create timely, useful and relevant content; if it doesn’t relate directly to your online community or social network, it will fail. Over time, go over the content you create and note what made the biggest splash, as this will help develop strategy proceed. To expand your online brand ambassadors, you have to do your part by creating shareable content.
Promote, Promote, Promote
Take time to appreciate customers who are brand ambassadors. If they share your content, let them know with a public thank you. Link to their content – if applicable – to show you appreciate what they’ve done. This form of promotion is a two-way street and a retweet or two can go a long way. Promote those who promote you!
It’s simple: a few extra steps here and there can save your marketing budget while building a community that fosters enthusiasm for your brand. Building an army of free brand ambassadors can take any brand to the next level.
Image by Rosaura Ochoa