An Evangelist is one of your most productive marketing tools when it comes to selling your product, getting referral business and gaining new customers. The most effective way to gain brand recognition is to have satisfied customers do all the legwork for you. The best part is that this “word of mouth advertising” technique is absolutely FREE. Although this is one of the most economical sales force a business can utilize, it is surprisingly one of the least used marketing techniques.
Gaining evangelists are not only great for viral marketing, but they also offer the best support when it comes to the growth and development of a company. Here are some key factors in identifying and gaining evangelists for your own business:
In order to identify your brands personal evangelists you need to be able to pin down your target market. Seek specific individuals who have a need for what you are selling. Recruiting relatives, friends and business associates who have been satisfied with your product are also great ways to gain referrals. Aiming to target specific markets will yield more referrals. Narrowing your search to potential customers who might need your specific product or service is the key.
After you have identified your target evangelists, you need to know where to find them and make contact. Joining groups on Linkedin, creating hashtags on Twitter and designing a Facebook Fan Page for your brand is where you are going to interact the most with current and potential customers on a more personal level. When someone seeks a specific service or product, they usually do the most research on these sites.
Participate — “Give to Get”
If someone is willing to help you, you have to be willing to help them. Whether they support your product on Twitter, Facebook or Linkedin you must be willing to interact with them on every social media outlet possible. Make sure to endorse their own products through your tweets or Facebook updates. Going the distance for your evangelists will make them want to go that extra mile for you. Think of it as “an evangelist for an evangelist”.
Thanking your evangelist through a small referral gift or reward or at the very least, recognition will provide an even bigger incentive for them to spread the word about your business. The slightest chance of getting a free product or service for a referral is extremely appealing. More importantly, it will always keep your brand at the top of a satisfied customer’s mind. They will remember the gift and will constantly try to market your product or service whenever the opportunity arises. Creating a reward as an incentive for referrals is a great way to keep customers marketing your business.
The Power of Evangelists
Getting the support of evangelists and developing a customer referral system could be one of the most profitable marketing step your business will ever take. By treating your customers with respect, rewarding them fairly and going the extra distance to help them will only benefit your business in the long run. Happy customers are not only useful for viral marketing, but they are the best resource when it comes to target marketing and free advertising.