Energizing your Advocates to answer prospects' questions provides compelling benefits.
- Increase conversions. HomeAway, a popular online vacation rental marketplace, got a whopping 13% conversion rate among prospects who had received answers to their questions fromAdvocates. Average sales conversion rates are 1-2%.
- Reduce shopping cart abandonment. The average shopping cart abandonment rate is about 90%. In other words, about 9 out of 10 shoppers bail out of the purchase process at the final step--the purchase. Enabling prospects to ask Advocates questions during the final purchase process can help cut shopping cart abandonment rates. For some companies, even a 1% reduction in shopping cart abandonment rate can mean millions of dollars in sales.
- Generate highly qualified referral leads and clicks. Prospects must enter their email addresses to ask questions. this generates qualified leads. Additionally, the questions prospects ask can help you understand them better. By providing prospects with a promotional offer or coupon, you can also generate clicks to your website or landing pages.
There's another powerful benefit of activating Advocates to answer prospects' questions. By analyzing the questions prospects are asking (and the answers Advocates are providing), you can capture valuable insights. These insights can be used to improve your product,s enhance customer experiences, and understand unmet needs.
Getting Advocates to answer prospects' questions is ideal for companies that:
- Have a large Advocate Army. The general rule of thumb is that you need at least 1,000 Advocates for this approach to work well. You don't want to burn out your Advocates by peppering them constantly with questions.
- Sell products or services where prospects often seek others' advice before buying. Some examples of this include cars, travel, and hospitality, health and fitness, consumer electronics, and technology. Just about every B2B company can benefit from Advocate Answers because people usually ask questions before plunking down a few hundred or thousand dollars for a new business computer or another business tool.
- Sell new or innovative products or services. Most people aren't early adopters. getting advocates to answer prospects'' questions is a great way to help prospects understand benefits, overcome objections and increase sales.
This post is an excerpt from Brand Advocates: Turning Enthusiastic Customers into a Powerful Marketing Force (Wiley; ISBN: 978-1-1183-3603-8; July 2012; Hardcover & E-book)