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The goal of every company, be it big or small, should be to foster passionate fans who sing the praises of the company, products, and services to everyone they encounter. How do you turn ordinary customers into superfans? Here are three simple steps:
1. Create a great customer experience. You have to make every aspect of the customer experience great—including your website, your phone conversations, your greetings at the door of your establishment, and your customers’ shopping and checkout experience. Your marketing efforts should provide a good customer experience, too. Does your company newsletter offer value to subscribers? Do you engage with customers and prospects through Facebook, Twitter, and other social media marketing channels? If the customer experience stinks, you’re not going to have fans.
2. Provide access. Fans want to feel as if they have a special connection to your company, products, and services—so give them one. Provide regular customers with early sales previews or special loyalty discount programs. If you have a brick-and-mortar business, host customer appreciation events where you invite those customers who continually do business with you to come in, enjoy some food, mingle with the staff, and get better connected.
3. Share your knowledge. Customers want information from you, not just a sales pitch. Whether you’re using a blog, e-mail newsletter, social media marketing tools, or a combination of all three, make sure you’re not just hawking the latest items for sale. It’s better to share your expertise. A garden shop can discuss how and when to plant certain vegetables. A mechanic can provide advice on keeping a car maintained between visits. A management consultant can provide general tips on how to be a better leader. By sharing your expertise, your customers will turn to you when it’s time to buy and will recommend your business to their friends. They’ll become Superfans.
You don’t need a million Superfans to make these efforts worth your while—just a handful can act as evangelists for your company and spread the word of your excellence.
Senior vice-president, global market development
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