Thursday, June 22, 2006

Do You Know the Strategic Steps to Recruiting Advocates and Fans?

To create a buzz, you need to stimulate someone’s brain in a way that makes them want to tell other people about you. Sometime it is easy, and sometimes it is really a stretch to come up with buzz about you and what you do. If you spend time thinking about word of mouth and buzz, you probably spend time thinking about how to create a story people will tell their friends about. It could be all boiled down to great product or service that you actively tell people about, but lets think about the steps involve in getting someone to the end result of talking about you. The Strategic Steps to Recruiting Advocates and Fans Set One: Entice People to Notice You How do you get noticed? Without this step, the rest matters not a drop.
  • People skim for interesting things, how do you stand out?
  • How many new ways are you getting your message out?
  • What % of people stop on your message vs. skim over it?

Step Two: Entice People to Pay Attention

Are you paying attention? This must interest you just a bit then.

Having people notice you does not guarantee that you have gotten them to pay attention.

  • Have they forgotten what they were doing and are they focusing on you?
  • Will they feel incomplete if they do not get more information?
  • Are they open to finding out more?

Step Three: Entice People to Exploration

Hmmm, this is interesting. Let me take a look around, kick the tires or Google it. At this step you have created enough interest that some people will begin exploration. It might be picking up and shaking your product, it might be later on the Internet.

  • Is your product or service easy to explore?
  • Can people quickly grasp the concept and benefit?
  • Can they imagine themselves using it?

Each person has a different tolerance for how long they will explore something. That time varies based on the product and on their comfort level with your mode of exploration. Step Four: Entice People to Make a Commitment Play time is over and it is time to commit. Ideally, they buy 3 of everything you have to offer, but what is going on in their head?

  • That was mildly interesting – maybe I will get one some day….
  • I must have one. Here is my charge card.
  • Well, it might be OK to try.
  • That’s great! - I have to tell someone about this. (Takes out cell phone)
  • I am confused – Time to move on.
  • That sucks – Who would buy that!
  • That sucks – I have to tell someone about this train wreck of a product.

You will get more favorable results at this point if you have created high level of interest, trust and a strong understanding of the benefit. They may make a purchase, but they may also go out and tell others about you. Both options are good a good outcome. Set Five: Impress People with More This step assumes they have engaged with you in some way. Deliver a great customer experience, even if they do not buy. Freely give some value and positive energy to anyone that has gotten this far in your highly complex and intricate dance of advocate courtship. How do you leave them feeling?

  • That was dazzling
  • Just what I expected (Not bad if they had high expectation already.)
  • Didn’t live up to the hype
  • Ouch, I hurt myself

Step Six: Win People as Life Long Fans Assuming you keep in touch and keep delivering great value, you may have created a life long fan. This is better than the temporary buzz of step 4. This is a new sales person that will work for free, train themselves and get in line dressed as your CEO to be the first to buy your next new product. All of these steps are important to be truly successful at creating word of mouth and buzz. While sales people can play the role of guide, each of these steps is as dependant on the product and the services of the non-sales staff, if not more. By the way, if anyone out there needs to know how I dress, let me know. I am happy to provide photos.