You’ve got your SEO strategy in order, you’ve mastered your Facebook and Twitter accounts, and your WordPress site is on point. So what are you doing now to build your fan base?
The thing that many businesses don’t understand is that their best marketing resource is the customers who are actually using their product or enjoying their services. But turning your customers into fans (especially vocal fans) isn’t as simple as it might seem.
Here are a few ways you can help your existing customers into raving fans.
Remember that awesome promotion you ran last year that gave you a cool new 200+ Facebook fans? Yeah, that was great, but why haven’t you done anything since?
An awesome one-time promotion might help you get eyeballs, but unless you’re offering enticing deals, events, promotions and rewards on a regular basis, you’re likely not to make long-term fans.
As you continue to offer more discounts, promotions, contests or loyalty programs, you’ll start to build relationships with returning customers, and that’s how fans are born.
Think of it like this; you have all the tools you need to build fans from the ground up. It’s how you use those tools now (and how often you use them) that will determine how many fans you get. Time to get to work!
Talk to your customers.
Not sure how to turn customers into brand fans? Well, ask them! Too many businesses think of marketing as a guessing game. You don’t have to wonder what your customers are thinking or looking for all the time; social media makes it easier than ever to ask them directly.Make sure your website is equipped with a feedback mechanism and be active on social media.
Of course, it’s not just about posting often. It’s important to post the content that will get your customers talking – which will help you get to know them (and what they want) better.
It’s also important to hone those listening skills. If you’re not listening to and heeding your customers’ feedback, you’re not going to transform them into fans.
Build brand partnerships.
Your customers aren’t exactly monogamous. They frequent other businesses and consume other products. And if you’re smart, you’re taking advantage of that knowledge.
Building relationships with other brands (those that don’t compete directly with your product or service offering), can help you create a package solution that turns customers into fans.
Think about it; your manicure customers likely get their hair cut somewhere. Why not forge a partnership with a nearby salon to combine discounts and promote a mutually beneficial relationship?
Think strategically about which businesses or brands help to complement your own – without directly competing. Listening to your customers can help here too.
Don’t be boring about it.
Think about your customer relationships like you do your personal friendships; every relationship is a unique dynamic. That’s why there’s not a one-size-fits-all solution for building up brand superfans.
Some customers might be drawn to one-off coupons and discounts; another customer might be more interested in a loyalty program that offers ongoing rewards or incentives. One promotion likely won’t please every customer, or turn each customer into a raving fan.
That’s why it’s important to vary your strategy and diversify your offerings. You’ll begin to see what your customers respond to most positively. You might find that you begin offering one incentive over another, or that you need to maintain a variety of offerings to please all your fans.
Not easy, but worth it!
Sure, building fans isn’t easy, but if you’ve got a killer website, an awesome SEO strategy and an optimized social media presence, you’ve got everything you need to begin transforming everyday customers into your company’s biggest mouthpiece – your brand superfans.