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How brand advocacy should be used this festive season, as a new upcoming tool

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Brand Advocacy – it is most simply defined as leveraging your relationships with people who are supporters of your business so that they help you by sharing their enthusiasm for your company. A trend which has started globally couple of years back is now quickly adapting in India too.

With the festive season going gung-ho in India, brands are now exploring newer methods to approach and build a loyal customer base. Marketers are realizing the importance of leveraging positive sentiments about their company and their brand from their own workforce. While digital and social media marketing will remain key, brand advocacy is still new and an unexplored tool in India.

With Macro Influencers being an expensive route and data breaches being more frequent, marketers need to start looking for ways to build Trust & Authenticity with their audience on Social Media to drive Organic Reach, Engagement, Traffic & Leads. As per a Nielsen report, 92% of consumers believe that they’re more likely to trust content shared by ‘normal’ people.

Brand Advocacy thus becomes one of the most credible forms of advertising. With the festive season now started in India, marketers need to explore marketing during this time. Festival in India is now not just constrained to Diwali, Holi, or Eid; every occasion and holiday is celebrated with equal passion and enthusiasm.

With the rapidly increasing in adaption of foreign culture and lifestyles, Indian are now celebrating festivals like Halloween, Thanksgiving, thus giving marketers a larger and unexplored way of creating the right buzz around their products. India is known to be a land of festivals and occasions are a time for celebration, sharing happy moments and a shopping high, so brands should not miss out on leveraging this to showcase their product lines specific to the season.

Here are some steps brands can take to use brand advocacy this festive season –

  • Leverage on word of mouth marketing in their festival season campaigns to maximize customer awareness, engagement, and conversion
  • Conduct effective nano-influencer marketing program without investing in powerful technology
  • Focus on planning the campaign on the right platform you can dive right into the creative planning for your campaign, it’s crucial for you to establish your target audience, and the objectives of your program
  • Ensure influencers and their networks are relevant to the brand and its offerings, and that they have access to your target audience profile

Here are some key themes to build a campaign once the influencers are organized.

  • Purely influencer generated – Reviews, unboxing, opinions, leaks
  • Reinvent a branded asset – “What’s your version of ….?” Invite suggestions
  • Reward creativity – “Submit your creative idea for …” Seek inspiration
  • Announce prizes for stories shared – “Tell us … – and you could win …!”
  • Retweet, share – “Share enable our post”

It’s important for brands to know that as this trend grows, it’s vital for them to implement brand advocacy programs that will connect with their audience and encourage them to amplify their reach. Say for example we all know Cadbury comes out with a festive pack every Diwali and Raksha Bandhan. If a strategically planned advocacy program is conducted and employees showcase these packs on their close network on social media, the brand gets lot of additional value add.

This type of an image building exercise adds a lot of trust, authenticity and value to the brand and also keeps in the festive cheer of sharing and showering love to near and dear ones!

 

*Ajit Narayan is CMO and Program Head at Socxo

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Ajit Narayan

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