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Everyone is a Marketer

by | Feb 12, 2012 | Industry News & Trends

Marketers are always looking for the next big way to draw attention to our product or service. We love terms like cutting-edge and vanguard, striving to be unique and the first ones “to market” with an idea. But with the advent of social media we’re coming to realize that everyone is a marketer and the marketing team is no longer “in control” of the message. Schools have recognized this for a long time. That’s why instead of having teachers offer candy bars to us, they send little Jimmy peddling his goods around to all of his family.

Social (and by this, we mean buying from those you trust and know socially) marketing is much more successful than a nameless, faceless approach. You are more apt to buy from little Jimmy, because you know him, then you are to be won over by a slick campaign. After all, who can say “no” to Jimmy’s big brown eyes and chocolate-smudged face?

The best form of marketing is word of mouth and to achieve that you must get people excited about your product/service. Facilitate conversation. Encourage sharing about your product or your team. Hearing it from you is not nearly as effective as hearing it from their best friend, colleague, grandmother… just get people talking. (Whether that’s through an online member community or not depends upon your product or service but it never hurts to give someone a platform upon which to sing your praises.)

There are many ways to create buzz; having an unparalleled product/service or deal, creating an inviting community or through impeccable customer service. Assuming you already have a great product, and if you are on this site you are at least entertaining the idea of creating a feature-rich community, that leaves the third component – impeccable service. Imagine that the size of your marketing team has grown and every member of your staff is now a marketer. Every person who has come in contact with your product or service or even a member of your staff is now a potential marketer for your organization. Because of social networking and online communities, your organization has become more transparent, whether you realized it or not.

Through employee social networking profiles, to customer blog testimonials, you (maybe even your management style), your product and your level of service are being discussed openly. Train and empower your employees to be brand evangelists. You spend money to deliver a message to the public but if you ignore your employees (or volunteers, whoever is out there representing you) your customers won’t get it. If all they see is unresponsive customer service or incorrect information sharing, it won’t matter that you are telling them the opposite. Plus the newer the customer, the less likely he’ll be to give you a second chance.

So don’t let a customer’s first impression with your organization be his last. The money you spend reinvesting in your workforce has a great ROI – it’s called HRC or happy, returning customers.

There’s a long forgotten saying, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” Sadly, this does not apply to social media. Stories of terrible customer service and inferior products spread faster and last longer than the good ones. Encouraging people to talk about you in a positive light goes a long way to establishing credibility. When you come to recognize everyone as a potential member of your marketing department and make it your goal for every connection to be a positive one, you will become a company with an army of brand evangelists both internally and externally.


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