How to turn your online customer into a brand ambassador
Right after a customer does an online purchase on your site, an important marketing opportunity arises. At that moment, someone chose to buy a product from your business, linking them to your brand. So make sure to seize that moment! In this article, we’ll go over a number of things you can do to turn these online customers into brand ambassadors.
Ask customers to promote you
As the introduction suggested, a perfect moment to turn customers into ambassadors is right after their purchase. Strike while the iron is hot! You can simply ask your customer, who obviously just had an awesome experience shopping on your eCommerce site to promote your site for you. Here are a few suggestions on how to get customers to promote you:
A great way to turn your customers into ambassadors is by asking them to write a testimonial. A testimonial, or review, gives site visitors an idea of the experiences of others and why what you’re offering is so awesome. Besides adding testimonials on your website, you could also ask your customer to leave a product review on larger review sites. Think along the lines of TripAdvisor (hotels and restaurants), GoodReads (books), and Yelp (any local business). A while ago I went camping in Denmark, and there were TripAdvisor signs everywhere telling me about the (obviously) good rating they had, asking me to leave my own review.
When someone has purchased something on your site, I think it’s totally okay to ask them to leave their two cents. For example, in the confirmation email you send or shortly after they’ve actually received the product. Not only will this help your brand by getting positive reviews, which new customers will see as social proof of your reliability. These reviews also help you monitor things you can still improve upon and grow your business.
Reviews on Google and Facebook
In addition to reviews on your site or larger review sites, why not ask your customer to leave a review on your Google Business page or Facebook page as well? Google and Facebook are probably the starting points for any search your potential customer does.
Regardless of whether a customer decides to click on the link to your site or Yelp, your Google reviews will be shown next to your listing in both Maps and Search. Which will increase the trust people have in your business. The same goes for your Facebook reviews, these reviews tell potential customers about the experiences others have with your business. An example of a review on Facebook:
Another way for customers to promote your site online is through social sharing. It’s important to make this as easy as possible for your customers and other followers. For example, you can choose to add social sharing buttons to your Thank You page that people land on when they’ve completed their purchase. Clicking the tweet or share button will open a box with a predefined text about your site and a link to your site. Personalize it by adding the product name (“I just bought Product X on yourshop.com – it’s awesome!”). If the text is predefined, it will literally take two clicks for a customer to share your site and become a brand ambassador.
When you have a blog on your eCommerce site, you could also add these social sharing buttons to your blog. Making it easy for people to share an interesting blog post online, endorsing your brand through sharing your content. Also make sure to share your blog posts on social media yourself. This makes it possible for your social media followers to share this content with one or two clicks, for example by retweeting on Twitter.
When your eCommerce site doesn’t have a blog, you could share a category page when you have a sale or a product page of a long-awaited new product on your site! Whether it’s a post or page you’re sharing, make sure that your content looks good when it gets shared. This makes it way more attractive for your customers and fans to share this content as well. You can use the social previews in Yoast SEO Premium to check and optimize what your social post will look like before you share it.
Appreciate your customers
Even online, you must strive to be that nice neighborhood shop, where you know your customers by name. Perhaps not all of them in the case of thousands of customers, but at least the largest or most loyal 10% of them. That means investing back in these customers. Sending them a birthday present, adding extra incentives or discounts, things like that. Show them you appreciate them as your customer.
Keep in touch
But that’s not all. It’s important to provide great after-sales services that will lead your customers back to you. This could just be a flexible return policy. Or, for example, if you own a guitar shop and you sell a cheap Spanish guitar, chances are that the buyer is a beginner. Surprise him or her with a short tutorial video for simple chords a week after purchase. Send an email six months after purchase with a discount for new guitar strings. It’s all so obvious, right? In this case, you just have to keep in mind that the obvious probably works.
Some final thoughts on brand ambassadors
In this article, we discussed turning your online customers into ambassadors for your brand. Which you can do by asking them for testimonials for your site, larger review sites, Facebook and Google. But also by making it possible for them to share your site and products through social media. To keep these brand ambassadors, always remember to appreciate your customers by investing in them and keeping in touch. Make sure that they don’t forget you.
In addition to all the things mentioned earlier, it’s absolutely necessary that you do your best to deliver the best customer experience possible. Deliver on time, or if that’s not always possible, communicate on time. Treat your customer as you’d like to be treated yourself. Make the customer feel welcome in your online brand family! Read more about how to deliver the best customer experience possible in our ultimate guide to eCommerce usability.
Frequently Asked Questions
Typically, a brand ambassador is someone hired by a business to represent their brand and increase brand awareness and sales. However, there is second type of ambassadors, people who talk about your brand without you paying them. Who are your actual customers and who have genuine experiences with the products or services you offer.
A brand ambassador talks about your business in a positive way, online and/or offline. By posting about your business or products on social media, or recommending your services to others any other way. Brand ambassadors can help you build trust, establish a great reputation, boost sales, and even increase customer loyalty.
When you’re hiring someone to be your brand ambassador, make sure that person reflects your brand and company values. However, we do recommend asking your customers to become brand ambassadors instead of paying someone to promote your brand. This will be more genuine and increases trust in your business.
Yes, there is a difference. Where a brand ambassador talks about your brand, influencers promote your products or services by showing people how to use it. Another difference is that businesses often have a short-term collaboration with an influencer and a more long-term relationship with a brand ambassador.
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