by Jennifer Williams
Right this minute, there could be someone who just discovered and fell in love with your product or service and is talking about you on Social Media. And that person could be in a niche that aligns really well with your brand, making them a potential Brand Ambassador.
Do you have someone on your team monitoring Social Media for mentions? Probably yes, but are they monitoring 24/7 and responding to such mentions in real time, striking while the iron is hot?
If not, you could be missing a major opportunity to turn a happy customer into the highly coveted brand ambassador – the person who is a recognized authority aligned with your brand, and willing to promote your brand for free because they love your company, product, or service so much they want you to succeed and for people in their network to enjoy your brand as much as they do.
Potential customers are 71% more likely to make a purchase based on Social Media referrals.
Brand Ambassadors may have a smaller network versus a paid influencer, but their network is highly targeted. And unlike a paid influencer, they often come to you, and will continue to promote your brand long after the contract and budget has run out for an influencer campaign.
When people post positive messages about a brand on Social Media, whether a potential Brand Ambassador or not, their loyalty to the brand can really be secured by a quick, public response from the brand. This is just human nature. The brain loves reciprocation. Imagine someone giving you a compliment in a face to face interaction and you just ignored it for days, or worse, never acknowledged it at all!
These days, people expect a response on Social Media anywhere from six hours to as little as an hour, but most companies take more than 24 hours to respond. While that data is for more standard customer service, like questions or complaints, the underlying reason applies for any type of “call and response”. To the brain, Social Media is happening in real time. Most posts are responded to within minutes to hours by a person’s network, so if your company falls into this response window, it sends the message that you’re real and part of the tribe.
Companies tend to think of Social Media monitoring services as a safeguard layer against negative sentiment or complaints getting out of control and turning into a PR disaster, but there are very positive reasons to outsource a team to monitor brand mentions on Social Media.
Delighting your happy customers with a quick response time increases brand loyalty and can increase future purchases by 20-40%, and a few of those happy customers may turn out to be excellent Brand Ambassadors in the process. Don’t let them slip through your fingers!
Jennifer Williams is a Marketing Behaviorist at Verilliance.com, building lean marketing strategies based on consumer and decision science.