Evangelism marketing

Evangelism marketing

Evangelism marketing is an advanced form of word of mouth marketing (WOMM) in which companies develop customers who believe so strongly in a particular product or service that they freely try to convince others to buy and use it. The customers become voluntary advocates, actively spreading the word on behalf of the company.

Evangelism marketing is sometimes confused with affiliate marketing. However, while affiliate programs provide incentives in the form of money or products, evangelist customers spread their recommendations and recruit new customers out of pure belief, not for the receipt of goods or money. Rather, the goal of the customer evangelist is simply to provide benefit to other individuals.

As they act independently, evangelist customers often become key influencers. The fact that evangelists are not paid or associated with any company make their beliefs perceived by others as credible and trustworthy.

Evangelism literally comes from the three words of 'bringing good news' and the marketing term justly draws from the religious sense, as consumers are literally driven by their beliefs in a product or service, which they preach in an attempt to convert others.

History

Many people believe Guy Kawasaki, the former chief evangelist of Apple Computer, to be the Father of evangelism marketing. In his books “The Art of the Start" and "How to Drive Your Competition Crazy” Kawasaki states that the driving force behind evangelism marketing is the fact that individuals simply want to make the world a better place.

How to create customer evangelists?

In their book, Creating Customer Evangelists: How Loyal Customers Become a Volunteer Sales Force, Ben McConnell and Jackie Huba outline six steps to creating customer evangelists:

# Customer plus-delta (Continuously gather customer feedback)
# Napsterize knowledge (Freely share your knowledge)
# Build the buzz (Create intelligent word-of-mouth networks)
# Create community (Encourage communities of customers to meet and share)
# Make bite-size chunks (Devise specialized, smaller offerings to get customers to bite)
# Create a cause (Focus on making the world, or your industry, better)

Customer communities

A strong avenue for evangelists is in the form of customer communities, which bring together groups of users of a product or service to share information and discuss common issues. Some companies assist with such events, for example General Motors' Saturn division in Tennessee organizes an annual summer picnic for thousands of customers. Another example is the Harley Owners Groups (HOGS), organized by Harley Davidson, which associate bikers locally and globally through quarterly and annual meetings held all over the world.

See also

* Crowdsourcing
* Word of mouth marketing
* New Media Marketing
* Buzz marketing
* Promotion
* Grassroots marketing
* Reputation management
* Advertising
* Apple evangelist
* Diffusion of innovations
* Marketing
* Operating system advocacy
* Technology evangelist
* Global Network of Technology Evangelists

External links

* [http://www.womma.org/ Word of Mouth Marketing Association ]
* [http://www.churchofthecustomer.com/ Church of the Customer Blog]
* [http://www.micropersuasion.com/customer_evangelism/index.html Micro Persuasion: Consumer Evangelism]

References

* Ahonen, T. and Moore, Alan. "Communities Dominate Brands: Business and Marketing Challenges for the 21st Century", Futuretext, 2005. ISBN 0-9544-327-3-8

* Huba, J. and McConnell, B. "Creating Customer Evangelists: How Loyal Customers Become a Volunteer Sales Force", Dearborn Trade, 2002. ISBN 0-7931-5561-4

*

* cite journal | author=Longenecker, C. | title=Marketing as a management style | journal=Business Horizons | year=2005 | volume=38 | issue=4 | pages= 77 | doi=10.1016/0007-6813(95)90012-8
* "Rules for Revolutionaries" by Guy Kawasaki
* "The Macintosh Way" by Guy Kawasaki


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