04 Dec How Are Brands Turning Social Complainers into Brand Advocates?

Ad Age recently stated that when an unhappy airline passenger can pay Twitter to show his complaint to tens of thousands of potentially interested people, it’s safe to say something profound has changed.

Today, a consumer’s megaphone is more powerful than a brand’s message. Individuals can create a PR nightmare for big companies simply by sharing their experiences and opinions on Facebook, Yelp, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube.

Brands need to be ready for the spotlight – good or bad – by immediately addressing comments as if their reputations depend on it.  Because they do.

What should marketers do?

Use honesty. Today, companies must tell the truth – consistently – so their consumers remember it. Don’t try to be something you’re not.

For example, the Ad Age article reminded us that JC Penney apologized for changes it made that alienated customers and caused sales to plummet. “Recently JC Penney changed,” the ad went. “Some changes you liked and some you didn’t. But what matters with mistakes is that we learn. We learned a very simple thing — to listen to you.”

You must live your brand 24/7. Champion that rediscovered core belief in everything you do, then ask your employees to do the same. Not only will you engage them as torch-holding brand advocates, your audience will catch on.

In the end, when you live your truth and demand the same from your employees, that truth creates a ripple effect for your clients and customers. They become your advocates and then they’re inspired to tell the world. Is it going to be easy? Of course not. But once a brand gets to that point, the consumer’s megaphone is no longer something to fear. It will instead become the most powerful tool a brand will have.

How does your company live its truth? Has it made a difference to your clients? Share by commenting below!

Sibet B Freides