Posse, gang, crew, clique, entourage, homies… these are the people who are going to build your brand, grow your business and help your reach success. These people become the backbone of our companies and we leverage off them for their ongoing business, their support and most importantly their positive relationship with our brand. But how do we turn these people from consumers into cheerleaders and advocates for our brand?
This is a process that takes time and is about building a strong a trustworthy relationship between you and your consumers, however it’s time well spent, considering these people will be spreading the good word about your brand and campaigning for your success in the near future.
So, to make things easy we’ve created 8 simple steps to transforming your consumers into your Posse! The steps help you build a relationship with them whilst giving them insight into your market, industry and business but most importantly show you how to give back to them and add value.
Step 1: Build your posse
The first step in this process is about giving value to as many people as possible and understanding what kind of value you can give people. It’s essential that you establish early on what your business mission is, what you want to be known for and what your competitive advantage is. From here you can begin to better understand what it is you can offer people and start to develop value offerings around this knowledge. Step 1 is also an important stage where you make generosity part of your growth strategy. Organise free webinars, create a Facebook group or even organise a Mastermind meeting, these are the types of opportunities where you will be able to give your ICA free content, lots of value and begin the initial stages of your long term relationship with them. Really understand the types of interfaces your ICA like to use and ensure that you aren’t selling anything during the offerings; they should just be an opportunity for your business to give. Step 1 will be the begin of your journey with these people so be true to who you are, be true to your brand and help them overcome whatever personal or business related challenges they may be facing.
Step 2: Power of the Posse
This step is an arduous one and at times, one you never really stop doing. It’s all about research and better understanding your ICA. It’s at this stage that you need to develop your most comprehensive and specific ICA template to know exactly who they are. From there you then need to invest time understanding who they are as people, their hobbies and interests as well as what motivates them, drives them and what scares them. If you better understand your Posse, you have a better chance of connecting with them and providing them with a solution to their problem. Nothing is more frustrating than dealing with a business that doesn’t understand your business and your needs. Look at every possible and plausible avenue your ICA may be travelling down, even attempt to speak with some people who fit your ICA template and ask them questions that may further your findings. This research is going to continually grow and evolve as the world changes but it’s important to have a solid foundation to begin with. Knowledge is power and your Posse will only be powerful if you know and understand them.
Step 3: Connect with your Posse
By this stage, you should have formed the initial stages of a relationship with your Posse and now it’s about building on that relationship and moulding it into a long term affiliation. Remember, we want these people to be our cheerleaders and advocates for our brand so we need to shower them with love, affection and value! Stage 3 is an opportunity for you to show them your skills and knowledge base whilst also communicating to them about your market, industry and business. There are a million and one social platforms you can utilise to connect with your posse, however you need to consider which ones are right for your ICA and use them (Step 2’s research should help you understand which one’s are ideal). This stage is about investing time being live and present on these social platforms, engaging with your Posse and giving them value. At step 3 it is essential to invest a substantial amount of time and energy into creating content for your posse that is not only engaging, but is informative and meets their needs and expectations. These people are coming to you for a reason and you need to ensure you service that need and help them overcome any issues.
Step 4: Give to your Posse
Once the lines of communication have been opened and your Posse is engaged with you and your brand it’s now the perfect opportunity to give to them once again- this time through a value offering such as a Free Opt-in. Not only will this build rapport with your current posse but it will also open up the opportunity for you to gain more followers in your posse. Step 4 is all about planning and creating the perfect opt-in that will entice your ICA and hopefully attract some new members to your Posse. This is also a fantastic opportunity to showcase your skills and knowledge and build your reputation among your Posse. Remember back in Step 1, we spoke about what we want to be known for; Step 4 is the chance to put that into action.
Step 5: Talk to your Posse
You’ve opened the lines of communication and now it’s time to engage on a deeper level with your Posse. This is the stage when you need to consider weekly, fortnightly or monthly emails to your Posse. These should be choca-block full of information, knowledge and value. These are not sales pitches but an opportunity for you to strengthen your credibility and your reputation in the market however every 4themail to them can have a small pitch in it at the end. Step 5 is all about building your database and maintaining it over the long term.
Steps 6: Plan for your Posse
We’ve worked so hard up until Step 6 to attain our beautiful Posse so now it’s about managing our time and ensuring we keep them front of mind and continue to give them plenty of information and value. Step 6 is all about managing your time and ensuring you schedule time each week to communicate and engage with your posse; it’s essential that all our hard work at getting our Posse on board isn’t lost because we didn’t make time for them. Creating a content calendar is the first way to ensure we are consistently giving to our Posse and providing them with lots of value. A daily worksheet or to-do list will also help you better manage your daily tasks, one of which being making time to talk to your Posse and engage with them. Step 6 is about customer relationship management, time management and how these two need to be front and centre everyday as part of your successful business and brand.
Step 7: Represent your Posse
Brand thy self- the number one rule of Marketing and something we so often forget to do. Every piece of communication that touches the eyes, ears and fingertips of our Posse should be branded in some way. We need to ensure our brand resonates with them by consistently exposing them to it. But this step goes deeper than that, step 7 is about clarity in your branding, making sure it all works cohesively and it’s a true reflection of your business. Money, time and effort invested in branding is never wasted as this is something people will remember for years to come. Branding is the identity of your business so how do you want to be perceived? At this stage you should be going through every piece of communication your business sends out and seeing if the branding is up to par. Will people know straight away that the information is from you? Is it in line with your business, mission and goals? Is it memorable? Your branding is the way your represent your Posse, just like our flags represent our countries so it is important to make sure that it’s an accurate representation of your Posse and something you truly love. Branding is one very powerful tool.
Step 8: Market to your Posse
Your posse are the people who are going to grow your business, who are going to buy your product or service and who are going to refer it onto others, so step 8 is all about marketing to your Posse. Up until this point we have been showering them in value and although that too is marketing, it’s now time to really look at your sales generation strategies. The research phase will help you to better understand what sales techniques work best for your Posse and from this you can develop marketing campaigns that will provide positive return on investment and have a high success rate. As with any marketing, we always suggest you think outside the box! Find ways to capture people’s imagination and interest, engage them and make them want to know and learn more. Step 8 is the time when you trial different approaches to sales and marketing and find the one that best suits you and your business.
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Originally published at www.creativebar.com.au May 6, 2015 by Natasha Rus.