Personal referrals have been crucial marketing tools from the dawn of commerce. Even today, 90% of consumers are more likely to buy a product from a brand recommended by a friend.
Word-of-mouth marketing is no new kid on the block, but it has been somewhat revolutionized by the advent of social media. Subsequently, it is more important than ever for brands to harness the power of word-of-mouth marketing by leveraging social channels in order to engage with customers, realize the value of long-term customer relationships and boost ROI.
Brands are growing increasingly aware of the potential their customers’ social actions have to generate brand virality and showcase a positive persona of the brand through social channels.
Let’s take a look at the top ways ecommerce merchants can leverage the potential of word-of-mouth marketing and convert their website visitors into active brand ambassadors through social media channels:
79% of people say that their primary reason for liking a company’s Facebook page is to get discounts.
Incentives for Social Sharing
Rewarding consumers for taking the time to advocate your brand via social media is an excellent way to keep them motivated and encourage future interaction, including purchases. According to one survey, 52% of respondents had discovered a new retail product on Facebook, so you can just imagine the capacity promoting rewards on social has to grow your consumer base. Ideally, you want your incentive to capture the consumer without them having to leave your website.
Rewards for Loyalty
Ideally you should have a loyalty program in place that focuses on engaging your customer at every touch point and awarding them points for every social action taken. These actions can be likes, posts, comments, signing up for your email newsletter and more. This 360-degree approach is guaranteed to make customers feel more connected to your brand, and may up their average spend by 20% — 40%. Awarding loyalty points gives your customers a great reason to promote your brand and can potentially boost customer life time value (CLV) by up to five times.
Each new visitor to your site is a possible future ambassador for your brand.
Completing a purchase is typically a gratifying moment for your website visitor, making it an ideal time for brands to engage. You should implement strategies to transform their post-purchase delight into viral word-of-mouth recommendations by encouraging them to share their purchases via social channels. Taking action to leverage the moment after purchase has the potential to increase your brand's presence on an exponential (viral) scale and generate a flood of quality referral traffic your site. Remember: each new visitor to your site is a possible future ambassador for your brand.
Craft a well-told story around your product to make customers feel like they have an insight into your brand.
The Power of Product Stories
The power of product stories lies in their capacity to create loads of positive social buzz around a specific product. Craft a well-told story around your product to make customers feel like they have an insight into your brand. By tapping into customer sentiment after purchase and intriguing them with a product story, you can make it easy and fun for your customers to share what they love best about your brand. In turn, the “social proof” they provide can influence other customers to also purchase this same product and add their own stories.
The novel nature of product stories has made them extremely popular, and brands are increasingly tapping into their potential to maximize visibility on social media, boost SEO rankings and increase customer conversion rates.
Brands that are not tapping into the power of word-of-mouth marketing and coupling it with a solid social media strategy are losing out and being left behind. The success of ecommerce merchants can't be separated from the quality of their relationships with consumers, who can either remain just site visitors or become their biggest advocates.
If you have any other effective social strategies that can help convert website visitors into brand ambassadors, let us know in the comments below!