We talk and talk about Zealots here at Guest Relations Marketing – how they help your business, how they refer you to family and friends, how they defend you, and how long-term they are the surest way to success for your brand.

What we wanted to share today was a bit of insight into actually finding the Zealots for your brand. Who are they? What do they look like? And, how do you identify them amidst all the people engaged with your brand? Here are a few things to ask yourself as you begin the quest of finding the Zealots of your own brand.

How do you define your best customers?
This is an important starting point. The first step to finding your Zealots is realizing their importance. Most companies look through their database of past and current guests, look at their spending patterns and histories and target their “best customers” as those who have spent the most money. Lets certainly not discount this spending activity as being valuable for your business – but consider these folks may very well not be loyal supporters of your brand. They may be buying on behalf of someone else, they may hate your brand but be contractually committed to using you, they may have spent a lot of money with you and had a bad customer service experience and are now committed to telling their friends and family to never use your product again. So, look beyond the money and consider rethinking the definition of your “best customers.”

Are your customers referring you?
The surest way to measure customer satisfaction is how likely they are to recommend you. And, in today’s economy a personal referral or recommendation goes a long way as people are more cautious than ever about spending money with an unknown brand. When trying to identify Zealots, look at customer referral patterns and track who is actually willing to (and who actually does) take the time to talk you up to others. Consider if you are even giving your customers a way to refer you easily? And of course, put measurements in place with your marketing and operations efforts to ensure you can track these referrals that will tell you the true loyalty and satisfaction of this most Zealous fan of your brand.

Are you looking beyond your customers?
Lastly, and again importantly, are you looking beyond your current customer base to find the Zealots of your brand? If you’re only defining your best customers by monetary figures, than most likely you haven’t realized the importance of the Zealot. This leans a bit on word-of-mouth and referral practices, but consider that just because someone is not a customer of your brand, it does not necessarily mean that they are not driving actual hard number sales and business for your brand by their support. They may not be in the market for your product or service, they may not be able to afford it, they may have experienced it through their parents or friends – but make no mistake, if they are a non-customer Zealot for your brand they are finding every way possible to engage themselves with your brand, to tell others about you, and ultimately if their situation changes they will become a very loyal customer of your brand.

What are ways in which you find the Zealots for your own brand?

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Guest Relations Marketing
Transforming Prospects to Guests, and Guests to Zealots=

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