For many companies working hard to grow, the focus on demand generation can’t be understated. It’s the engine that is driving growth (or supposed to be). Where once marketing was dominated by branding and creative, today the focus has shifted to attracting and converting new customers. And that charge is being led under the very comprehensive banner of Demand Generation that includes everything from email marketing, performance marketing, webinars, events – anything that will drive new prospects to the door.
And what’s the single most potent ingredient in the demand generation mix? Customers. Today’s demand generation requires you to tell your story through your customer’s stories. After all, it’s their voice that resonates with audiences, not yours. Simply stated, they don’t want to hear you tell them how you can help them, they want to hear the experiences of people like them, people who are trying to solve the same problems.
What do you call those customers who are willing to join you on a webinar, be a reference, participate in a case study or give you a testimonial? Ah, yes: Advocates. Your secret weapon to growth is right in front of you, ready and willing to help if only you were serious about them.
Let’s say that again. Your customers’ stories are your greatest asset in demand generation, and they’re largely willing to help you. But to reap the rewards you have to be serious about them.
So, you ask, how do I make this happen? How can I get my advocates to, well, advocate for me?
Thankfully, the answer to that question is relatively straightforward. The trick is, you have to put in a bit of work before you make the ask and it requires a shift in mindset from a series of transactional interactions (think: customer service) to nurturing a long-term relationship (customer success). That said, it’s not nearly as difficult as it may seem.
Harnessing advocates can help fuel demand generation and provide a level of credibility that companies simply don’t have on their own. Agree / Disagree? I’d love to hear your experiences and perspectives.