The Social Consumer – Your New Influencer

The new era of consumerism is one in which each and every consumer has a powerful voice. It is one that touches brands across the spectrum, from the families of food, beverage and personal care brands within multinational CPGs all the way to modern B2B technology companies who are in turn focusing on the new voice of the consumer and how this affects their lead generation and sales cycles.

The new social consumer

As marketers working with social platforms we focus a lot on influencers and building influencer relationships. However this new social consumerism means that we need to turn our attention to looking at the empowered customer as the new powerhouse that must be considered and included in any advocacy program. This does not need to be a huge expensive operation and can start with something as simple as a thank you.

Here follows five easy things any company or brand can do today in taking the first step to growing a new breed of influential and empowered customer advocates, both on and offline:

Thank your customers. Rewarding your loyalists is not hard, from a simple discount on a repeat purchase to a personalized thank you, which costs nothing aside from effort, it all goes a long way
Be responsive. According to socialbakers, 95% of Facebook wall posts go unanswered by brands: don’t be in the 95%! Simply responding to your customers can quickly grow advocacy and affinity
Look at the communities you have around your brand, whether they are owned or earned communities. You can likely identify your brand advocates pretty quickly, and likely they are not paid influencers but quite simply fans.
Review your numbers. Do you know what percentage of your revenue actually comes from new business, and what comes from repeat buyers? Make sure your experience for your repeat customers is as good as the very first time they came to you.
Let your YOU come through. The new connected environment means your customers want and need a personal connection. Think about how you can bring the human into your brand, with the easiest way being through your connection in social spaces. This could mean undertaking a review of your brand voice with your team, looking at how you currently come across and how you want to be perceived.

Watch for more content this week from our time at PivotCon in NYC this week, focusing on this new social consumer including exclusive interviews from our panelists at the Ogilvy Brand Breakfast!

What are your quick tips for growing your best customer advocates in social spaces? Tweet me @gemsie with your ideas or comment here.