At the crux or the driving source of every business is the customer. The fact is they are the source of revenue to keep your business up and running steading- the fuel to your operations.
On a serious note, have you thought about it on how your customers can be one of key contributing factors to grow your customer base?
Peer-to-Peer marketing is not only an excellent channel that can be exploited but also had seen a viable way to succeed in increasing customer base – both in B2B and B2C marketing. It is a complete package and approach on how you can leverage your happy customer base help you gain more customers through social media, referrals and thought leadership.
The fact is, a lot of industry reports validate that more than 90% of past buying decisions are made as a result of word-of-mouth, mainly recommendations from experts.
The most effective manner you can work on this is by making your customer an integral part of your content marketing strategy.
Let us discuss briefly on how diligently you can include your customers in your content.
Most of the leading websites dedicate a section to a collection of customer case studies either on their home page or in a different tab. Case studies are quite a compelling way to share your customer success stories on how their industry peers have countered similar challenges with your solution in a relatable structure. Time and again it’s been proven that storytelling has profound effect on the decisions customers make.
Here are some pointers to develop on and present a gripping case study:
- Real Results—Improved tactical metrics are good and all, but certainly not compelling enough for your reader to base their executive buy-in pitch on. Take it a level deeper and dig for real, strategic business impact such as ROI, cost savings, or revenue growth. A great way of doing this is to continue the conversation and ask, “Why is this metric important?” or “Where has it gotten you?”
- Relatable Challenge—Your audience can take many different angles, but one thing that these stories should have in common is a relatable challenge for your potential buyers. If your audience is the insurance section then share how your solution has helped Company X boost policy cross-sells, or how Company Y has enjoyed greater functionality and therefore improved output and ROI after migration from a competing solution.
- Visual Use Case—Sharing specific use cases helps elucidate the complete story of how your customer got from A to B—and how your reader can too! It builds credibility and helps your reader visualize how they can similarly use your solution.
Open your blog to Customers
Your customer base is a rich pool of knowledge just waiting to be shared, and customer blogging is an excellent way to do that. With a variety of different industries and personas who all have something in common, your blog provides a great platform to share new ideas, perspectives, and help develop and grow a community.
Have a good guest blogging program in place and design your editorial calendar accordingly and what customers may have a great piece of thought leadership to add to your blog. Often, too many links and over-selling your products through blogs can turn off potential buyers—even though the links that are stuffed are not of your own products.
Try and address your customer pain areas which can also be a great medium to reach a new audience if you ask your customer to cross-promote or republish on their own channels with an attribution link to your blog. Blogging is a cost-effective channel and an excellent opportunity to maximize on own resources by giving them a breather from having to write every blog themselves. On the other hand, it is also a unique way to highlight your customer while they narrate their story and create their own brand through thought leadership.
Feature Customers on Webinar
Just like the blog customer webinar series is also an effective channel. This is a well-ordered phenomenon to feature customers as guests or even invite them to speak on topics they are proficient in. If you market to various sectors, it’s an excellent medium for your customers to share tricks of the trade, how they can leverage your platform for success, or share their point of view on common challenges.
The unique opportunity that webinars provide unlike the other content channels is that your guest has the liberty of time to speak in-depth about the topic with support of live visuals and interact with people through live chat. Adding voice and face to your content offers an all-together a new dimension of credibility—something that is not possible to achieve in written content mediums.
Live Streaming on Social Media
Live streaming is the latest fad of social media – fresh, exciting and cost-effective way to engage with your prospects. While it is fairly new since most businesses have still not got it fine-tuned to optimize their approach, it is definitely worth the try.
Reports suggest that 80% of customers would rather watch a live stream video than read a post from a brand. Live streaming provides a new level of trust, transparency, and authenticity.
If this is something you haven’t yet explored—then you must try doing so. Begin so by featuring your customer in your video. Incorporate live streaming through live events, Q&As, interviews and announcements.
Another cutting-edge way to augment your online customer community is by promoting online self-recorded videos. Video submissions are a new and vibrant approach that a lot of firms have embraced, and it’s really interesting to see how your customers respond.
You cannot miss the silver lining that enrich every piece of content that your marketing team comes up with: testimonials. The remarkable part about using customer quotes is that you can include them everywhere—website, sales deck, ebooks, white papers and off course on social media. Gathering quotes and presenting them is probably the simplest yet effective way to involve your customers in the content you formulate.
To conclude, one of the all-time prevailing marketing challenges is deciding on what message will truly resonate with your target crowd. There cannot be a better way to do this than utilize peer-to-peer marketing. Besides the case studies and reviews, there are innumerable ways to make your customers the hero of your content marketing strategy. Moreover, the evolving and advanced technology has given you the freedom to do what you can do the best and be at your creative best. Keep experimenting fearlessly.