Marketers are getting smarter when it comes to brand advocates. They realize that advocates can be a powerful word-of-mouth and amplification channel. They understand that advocates need to be engaged in meaningful ways to have the most impact. And they (hopefully) recognize that just because a person “likes” a brand’s Facebook Page, they won’t necessarily go so far as to defend the brand.
The increased understanding and adoption of advocacy marketing can be attributed to both experience as well as the plethora of case studies and research that exist. Many of the studies, such as Deloitte’s “A New Breed of Advocates” or eMarketer’s “Brand Advocates: Scaling Social Media Word-of-Mouth” focus on advocates’ characteristics and behaviors. This information is important to understand basic things like how much more likely an advocate is to recommend or what motivates them. But at WOMMA and ComBlu, we were left with a lot of unanswered questions.
So, What Don’t We Know?
What’s missing is a comprehensive study from marketers’ perspective. A study that doesn’t simply ask whether marketers will allocate more or less budget in the coming year, but examines specific approaches and strategies. Are brands incentivizing advocates? Is it with intrinsic or extrinsic rewards? What methods or tools do brands use to identify their advocates? Do their advocates participate in a formal onboarding process?
In other words, there’s a void in research that looks beyond who are brand advocates and what they do. We want to know how marketers engage advocates, segment them by behaviors and motivations, leverage them as an asset, and measure their ROI. A “state of brand advocates” study, per se. Inquiring minds want to know!
This is Where You Come In!
To address this, we’ve teamed up with WOMMA and developed the 2013 WOMMA/ComBlu Brand Advocates survey. The questions aim to uncover insights into the way brands work with and benefit from their advocates. It takes 10 minutes to complete.
We’d love for you to participate in the survey. If you do, we’ll be happy to send an advance copy of the results. We look forward to analyzing the research and sharing our findings!