5 Benefits that a Brand can Enjoy by Building an Online Community
The way of marketing and pitching the ideas in front of users have always evolved based on the use & popularity of the marketing medium, the brilliance of the idea, and the value that idea can bring to its users.
Initially, marketing was only limited through advertisements on television, radios, magazines, and billboards. After the internet boom, new marketing strategies emerged that worked perfectly in the online realm. PPC advertisement collectively with SEO incorporated various elements of content marketing that presented new ways through which an organization can reach its most ideal audience.
However, these conventional marketing techniques rely completely on the interest of the consumer. A user will only take action to a company’s marketing campaign if it triggers the interest and desire of the user.
This is a difficult task for marketers as developing amusing content that can immediately grab the attention of a person skimming through a wide range of other content available on the internet is a laborious task.
Community marketing is a completely different approach that eliminates the drawbacks of these techniques and allows a marketer to target a whole group at once.
Unlike traditional marketing techniques that focus on generating new customers, community marketing is more about building a long-term relationship with the existing customers by engaging and interacting with them on a regular basis.
Creating an online community allows a company to keep a track of its customers need and enables it to retain them for a long time. It can also find and join other communities related to its field of work and promote its services to a large group of like-minded people in the community.
Community marketing brings several benefits to a company that traditional marketing techniques don’t. It opens new doors of possibilities in terms of gathering insights, building a brand image, and improving the retention rate.
Let us look at the benefits that an organization can attain by building an online brand community:
(1) Better customer service:
A community of an organization allows it to provide better and quick customer service. It acts as a direct link between the customers and the company. This directc
link allows the company to instantly respond to any problem that their valuable customers may face.
The customers can share their needs and expectations that they have from the company and in return, the organization can gain honest opinions about their products/services.
By constantly communicating and catering the needs of the customers in a community, a company builds a robust customer care platform which in turn develops a life-long relationship between the brand and the customers.
(2) Increase customer retention rate:
Big brands like Nike, Tata, and Rolex, have a loyal customer base. These devoted customers never think about buying products from other companies. These die-hard fans are created due to the trust that the brand built due to their years of good customer service and quality of their products.
A community allows a company to connect and target such customers. The brand image of the community creates a switching barrier for the members which in turn increase the retention rate of the customers.
Due to their devotement to the brand, the members of the community are more likely to shop from the same brand continuously irrespective of the price.
(3) Improves brand awareness through word-of-mouth:
The loyal members in the community of a company act as brand ambassadors. These members spread the information about the products and services of the company through word-of-mouth.
They act as a marketing channel and influence other people to experience the services of the brand. The brand awareness of the company can be increased even further if the company introduces a referral program which gives incentives to people who spreads the information about the company’s products/services.
(4) Eliminates the need to invest too much money:
Building an online community is among the initial step to create a strong market presence. A company won’t need to use other marketing techniques if it succeeds in developing a huge online community.
By posting content on the community itself, a company can tempt its customers to drive more sales. This will eliminate the company’s dependence on paid advertisement, promotion, and other money associated with marketing techniques.
(5) Acts as a medium to gain useful insights:
An online community allows a company to gather useful insights about the needs of its valuable customers. A company can ask its customers to take part in polls, quizzes, and give reviews about their products and customer service.
The members of the community will give their honest feedback which in turn will let the company improve their services. It can also create new buyers personas based on the demographics and insights it gets from its customers.
Even though, building a substantially large community is a tedious task, the opportunities that it can bring to an organization are worth the investment.
By continuously engaging and interacting with the customers, a community increases its trust in the customers which in turn creates a strong awareness about the company in the market. The loyal customer base that these communities make can never be replicated by other traditional techniques.