You may wonder what this article is all about, the article’s story is inspired by fine artist based in Cairo who left her job at one of the biggest agencies operating in Digital Marketing and decided to use Social Media to take her revenge from former employer.
You might find this article quite long but just as long as it is worth reading.
Recently, in the ever-growing digital marketing field, hot new topics have emerged from a range of marketing case studies and practices. Nowadays, Influencers marketing and Brand Advocacy are the kind of controversial topics that cannot go unnoticed especially with the undeniable power of social media.
On one hand, the Influencers are considered to be a segment who got trusted critical mass of fans and followers within the media field whether it was online or offline, but! online considered more critical, why? because it moves fast plus you cannot control it and they have a dedicated fan base or followers who listen to them, advocate their opinions and believe them to be true, take action accordingly, and spread their information or share their posts across platforms.
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Social Media Influencers VS. Brand Advocates//
Influencers have a major effect on their audience across many fields of life and they can sway their opinions towards certain causes or even brands in our case. Interestingly, influencers can either be enemies to brands or form cooperative relationships with them, and their relationship with brands are based on incentives most of the time.
On the other hand, Brand Advocates are considered to be a segment that has a natural attraction towards a brand without any incentives they support the brand just for the actual benefit of the brand presence in the world and the long-term value they get from that brand. Brand Advocates are loyal promoters to their brands by nature, due to the long-term beneficial relationship that they have with a certain brand.
Advocates are super fans and brand loyalists who engage with the brand because they truly love it and will take action if asked. They may or may not have a sphere of influence themselves.
The Shape below demonstrates the three levels of Brand Advocacy and online Influence and it will put things in perspective:
Muna Abdurrahman Story//
Employee advocacy is another major segment of brand advocacy and it has so many details that we will not delve into in this article. However, there is a recent case of employee advocacy gone wrong which stands as a red flag for all brands out there who underestimated the concept of employee advocacy and didn’t put their employees best interest first which would only jeopardize their brand reputation.
A recent digital marketing case study of an aggravated social media blogger, furious with her company’s employee treatment agenda, took the decision of presenting her case on the social media court of law. The power of social media in amplifying the sound of unsatisfied customers of any brand shouldn’t go unnoticed.
You may have passed by this post?
Muna Abdurrahman story went viral amongst Digital Marketing society with more than 1100 shares and 1300 Likes as she share her experience with a well-known Social Media advertising company accused of ruthless management.
The post followed by sharing scn shoots from her email that claims a correspondence with the digital agency management:
More emails unleashed latter on..
This story made us recall how Marina Shifrin resigns with Kanye West dance video followed by Taiwanese animation company news-jacking response to Marina Shifrin resignation; We Are Hiring!
Last but not least, the lesson here is that if you failed in turning your employees into brand advocates and promoters; at least don’t push them to the brink of turning into brand detractors.
Brand reputation in a digital world//
The reputation of a brand can be an irreplaceable asset, Brands are susceptible to attacks by angry or unsatisfied customers in addition to different kind of influencers who are not bought by incentives nor swayed to brand advocacy. However, they either have a certain cause that they actually believe in and they convince you they were personally affected by it and they want attack the brand publicly or they want to distort a brand’s image just for the sake of a good media buzz at the expense of your brand’s reputation.
Case studies supports the claim that brands shouldn’t take defense for themselves directly because this attempt has proven its failure in demonstrating the brands credibility in front of the public.
However, brands should act subtly and indirectly in handling PR crises in the online world. Leveraging a third party of advocates is highly advisable in dealing with PR crises on social mediums without a direct interference from the brand. In this case, the brand advocates are the brand lawyers and they defend the brand indirectly whether threw WOM, social media blogs, and press releases or capitalizing on public relations techniques online and offline.
Employee Advocacy Benefits:
Delivers Multiple Strategic brand initiatives:
- DRIVE Brand Awareness
- CHANGE Perception
- EDUCATE Customers/Media
- SOLVE Customer issues
- PROVIDE Feedback/Insights
- INFLUENCE their peers to buy
The article’s story is inspired by the classic bestseller ‘How to Win Friends and Influence People’ written by the renowned American lecturer and writer ‘Dale Carnegie’. The title is also inspired by the 2008 British comedy ‘How to Lose Friends & Alienate People’ that is based on the memoir written in 2001 by the British educationalist and journalist Toby Young.
All image courtesy: Muna Abdurrahman Facebook account.