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Once your company has an active social media presence, how do you make sure that your brand’s message is reaching your target audience while engaging it as well? One way that has proved successful for AARP, Perdue and sports teams including the Baltimore Ravens and Chicago Blackhawks, is implementing a fan advocacy program that incorporates gamification.

What does fan advocacy mean, exactly? It means leveraging your most vocal and influential fans to act as word-of-mouth advocates for your brand. When your advocates share information about your brand on their social networks, it serves as a personal recommendation to their friends and followers.  

Now, once you have identified your brand advocates, how do you keep them engaged on an ongoing basis? This is where gamification comes in; adding incentives like points, levels, badges, prizes and other relevant motivators to the sharing process will make it more rewarding for your fans. Gamification also allows you to generate friendly competition among users through challenges, leaderboards and contests. Being creative with your rules of play will help keep your fans interested while growing your brand and bottom-line.

So, to break it down:

  •  You recruit fans to join your fan advocacy program
  •  They share your brand’s content to their social networks
  • You reward them with points, badges, prizes or other incentives
  • Your fans stay in the program and recruit others along the way
  • Repeat steps 2-4

Of course, taking on a campaign like this isn’t a magic antidote. It requires a commitment to your fans to regularly bring them interesting and engaging information and worthwhile incentives. It has to be mutually beneficial and implemented with a goal in mind (e.g. recruitment, cause awareness, product sales, app downloads, website traffic).

Not sure if your company is ready to take the plunge into a program like this? Check out some of the key benefits of a well-run fan advocacy campaign that uses gamification to motivate users.

 

How Gamification Motivates Advocates

Increase Social Engagement

When fans join your campaign, you already know they love you and want to share your brand with their social networks. With the addition of gamification, you give them even more reason to sing your praises. These word-of-mouth recommendations to view your content means more shares, likes, comments, reach and clicks. The average social ambassador has around 313 network connections–that’s 313 opportunities to engage new fans.

Increase Sales

Did you know that 46% of web users look towards social media when making a purchase? Additionally, 77% of consumers are more likely to buy a product from someone they trust. By leveraging your social advocates, you increase your company’s chance of capturing the attention of new customers in buying mode that see the recommendation that your fan–their friend–made on their social network.

But influencing others isn’t the only way your fan advocates can help increase sales. Engaged advocates spend an average of 2 times more on their favorite brands. By building and maintaining relationships with your advocates through social gamification you are ensuring their loyalty long-term.

Customer Feedback

Engaging with your fans regularly will give you the chance to solicit feedback, comments, suggestions and complaints. This can go a long way to strengthen their trust in your brand and will make them feel more involved and appreciated. This honest feedback will be helpful for your brand in terms of improving product development, service offerings and more.

Create Long-Term Advocates

Like we said before, properly executing a fan advocacy/gamification program requires a commitment. But by investing in that commitment, your company will benefit from long-term loyalty instead of short-term buzz.

At SocialToaster, we use gamification to activate your best brand advocates (we call them Superfans!) to share and engage with your brand’s content.

Whether you’re looking to recruit new fans, increase app downloads, or spread the word about your company’s cause, SocialToaster has a solution for you.  Contact one of our fan advocacy strategists today to get a demo and find out how to turn your fans into Superfans!