Customer Advocacy Software
Customer Advocacy Software Overview
What is Customer Advocacy Software?
Customer Advocacy Software is designed to support a company’s marketing, sales and customer success efforts. It allows a company to amplify social proof from existing loyal customers. That social proof is brought into communications with prospects and during onboarding of new customers. This can increase buzz around a brand in a somewhat organic fashion.
Customer advocacy software is related to referral marketing software and consumer ratings and reviews software. There are also products on the market designed to promote brand advocacy among employees. These are used for recruiting purposes and brand reputation management. However, those products are not covered here. Customer advocacy software is distinct from advocacy platforms designed for non-profits or political grassroots efforts.
Benefits of Customer Advocacy
Here are some of the possible benefits of a successful customer advocacy program:
- Spreading brand recognition
- Increase customer engagement
- Increasing word-of-mouth referrals (i.e. inbound leads)
- Shortening the sales cycle
- Easing the onboarding process through peer-to-peer knowledge sharing
- Generating ideas to fuel customer-centric product development
- Improving morale among employees
Customer Advocacy Software Features & Capabilities
Customer advocacy software helps companies identify potential advocates and encourage them to engage with the brand, often for incentives. This might include providing referrals, offering feedback, or participating in reference programs.
Features to support customer advocacy programs may include:
- Identification of potential advocates, activity tracking, and record management
- Referral campaign program creation, promotion, dissemination, and tracking
- Segmenting or sorting of referrals and customer-generated content to suit a purpose (e.g. marketing, onboarding, sales, customer success, etc.)
- Support for many types of advocacy channels, like social media (e.g. Facebook, Instagram), blog posts, reviews, articles, tutorials, webinars, etc.
- Incentive management (e.g. incentive creation, distribution, tracking, rewards and recognition, etc.)
- Engagement tools to communicate with brand advocates
- Customer reference or testimonial request workflow and management
- Collateral sharing and microsites that feature advocates
- Reporting and analytics to demonstrate success of referral campaigns or individual influencers by KPI (e.g. sales closed)
IntegrationsLeading customer advocacy platforms may integrate with the following types of tools.
- CRMs to log events and provide visibility over activities
- Third-party rewards and gift fulfillment platforms to support incentive management
- Marketing Automation Systems so that referrals and other collateral can be distributed across large segmented groups
- Social media sites where much of the advocacy takes place are expected
- The organization's CMS to house advocacy materials with other marketing content
Customer Advocacy Products
Gainsight says they enable business transformation through their passionate community, proven expertise, and cutting edge technology. In addition to the largest customer success community, the vendor says they also have a diverse, 333+ customer base spanning across Fortune 1000 companies such as...
AdvocateHub helps B2B marketers capture customer enthusiasm and use it to drive marketing and sales efforts. With AdvocateHub, B2B marketers build an advocate community and invite customers into it to complete “challenges” like referrals, reference calls or product reviews. As they complete...
Annex Cloud (formerly Social Annex) headquartered in Los Angeles offers the Referral Marketing Cloud, emphasizing customer-to-customer referrals and rewards as a means to increase volume of business and revenue.
Ambassador empowers marketing teams to increase new customer acquisition, referrals and revenue by leveraging the power of word-of-mouth. The vendor says their marketer-friendly software simplifies referral marketing. Ambassador automates the process of enrolling, tracking, rewarding and...
CustomerAdvocacy.com, headquartered in Virginia, offers their customer and employee advocacy platform, supporting a Voice of the Customer approach to research, data collection, and customer success, as well as driving customer references and testimonials.
Advocately, headquartered in Singapore and started by former Trade Gecko leadership, offers a customer advocate platform to drive reviews and testimonials or referrals.
Zuberance headquartered in San Carlos offers a customer advocacy software platform supporting customer testimonials and reviews, advocate leads and referrals, and community advocacy for supplying a knowledgebase with brand advocate story.
Amplifinity in Ann Arbor offers a referral and customer advocacy platform encompassing branded workflow for engaging brand advocates, gift card and incentive management, partner management with advocate management by partner, partner registration and co-branding, and other features.
NextBee headquartered in California offers a referral marketing and customer loyalty platform supporting incentive management with rules configurator and reward distribution, and program management console with segmentation and campaign analytics.
Upland Software acquired RO Innovation in summer 2018 to build out its sales and customer enablement capabilities. RO Innovation offers a suite of tools supporting reference marketing, content enablement, and customer advocacy to generate new business.
Swedish company Referanza offers their customer advocacy platform, supporting locating, recruiting, and enabling customer brand ambassadors to generate promotional content and provide testimonials.