Inbound marketing is based on a fairly simple premise: Keeping people happy can lead to great business. In addition to keeping them coming back for more, great service can turn customers into advocates for your brand. In theory, you can create a pleasant experience for a customer and let word-of-mouth (in the traditional sense or digital sense) do the rest.
But this process isn’t as passive as it may seem. Your happy customers can and will become your most valuable marketing force, but you have to make sure you’re putting their goodwill into good use.
Everyone loves a genuine compliment. If a customer has shown great sense in buying from you, applaud them for their choice and take the opportunity to remind them why it was a smart one. Keep in mind that it’s all about them—not you or your product/service.
Focus on how to now supply them with the information and means to promote your brand to others. Not only does this approach help to fend off possible buyer’s remorse, it ideally creates a desire in them to share your service with everyone they know.
Supply The Talking Points
Keep your customers educated and informed by providing them with resources that complement their choices. A follow-up letter, brochure, or email after the initial sale is a good start. Give them a few key bullet points on why your product or service is the best and encourage them to share that information with friends and family. Make the points simply and easy to remember and your customers will appreciate it.
Make it easy for your customers to help promote your product by prominently placing follow, like, and share buttons on your website. When they believe they’ve scored a great deal, people naturally want to share that information with the world. Tweeting, pinning, and posting allows them to do it with one simple click.
You can also use your own social media sites to re-pin, re-post, and retweet positive customer feedback. On the other side of that, don’t be afraid to ask your customers for honest reviews. Let them know your goal is to provide them with the best possible service, and that it can only happen if they let you know what they are looking for.
Make The Experience Rewarding
Don’t just ask your customers to spread the word about your product or service—reward them for doing so. Offer discounts or gifts for referring friends, and go that extra step and offer a similar discount to the potential customer they purchase after being referred.
As obvious as it seems to do so, don’t forget to extend a personal thank-you when a customer’s endorsement leads to a new sale. Also, if your product/service allows for it, offer a free sample (or some other kind of incentive) in exchange for feedback.
Make It Fun
Use “gamification” to encourage customers to share information about your company, product(s), or service(s) with their family and friends. Contests, reward programs, and countdowns all create a sense of fun that can lead to increased sales. Encourage your customers to submit photos and stories about their experience with your service/product and use them on your website and social media. Sometimes the resulting recognition and fame is enough, but throwing in a small giveaway makes it even more enjoyable.
Reward programs are a terrific way to acknowledge your customer’s role in your success, and they encourage repeat business. Countdowns work by creating a sense of urgency and offering greater incentives and benefits for early participation.
Remember that people who love and delight in your business will want to share that joy with others. Make your inbound marketing strategy fun for them, and your customers will become your greatest marketing evangelists. It takes some time to see results, so get started now and soon you’ll see a change to your bottom line that will put a smile on your face.