A diverse group of six friends sits around a wooden table at a warmly lit cafe. Cups of coffee and saucers are arranged on the table in front of them and the friends are all laughing as a woman in the middle of the group shows something on her smartphone to the people sitting next to her.
Do you have consistent and enthusiastic customers who publicly share their love of your products and services? If so, your business may already have some potential superfans. — Getty Images/Geber86

If you’re struggling to think of new ways to reach customers, you may consider developing a team of brand ambassadors known as “superfans.” Superfans are defined in Superfans: The Easy Way to Stand Out, Grow Your Tribe, and Build a Successful Business as your biggest supporters. These are people who love your brand, service, or product so much that they are willing to promote your business because it’s made such a difference in their lives.

Superfans not only buy from your company, but they also interact with your social media accounts, talk about you on their own personal pages, and invite others to follow you. They may even respond to customer inquiries before your team.

“The value of a superfan is massive. Not only are they likely to be paying customers for years to come, their positive buzz about your business will create revenue from new and existing customers—and that revenue could be substantial,” wrote ZenBusiness.

Superfans go out of their way to support your business, evangelizing your products and services to potential new customers. These superfans likely already exist; it’s up to your business to identify and channel their enthusiasm into sales.

[Read more: Why Hot Startups Like Pura Vida and Cure Hydration Are Getting Big Results From Micro-Influencers]

Start by finding potential superfans

To identify who is already speaking positively about your brand, use a social media monitoring tool, such as BuzzSumo, BrandMentions, or Sprout Social. These platforms can help you find users or followers who regularly mention your company and its products or services. You may only find one person or a few people speaking positively about your brand to others. If you don’t see anyone, that’s OK — you just need to start connecting with people.

If you don’t see a potential superfan in your followers, start by interacting with people. Like and comment on all positive mentions of your company on your page and on others’ feeds. Reach out to your email list, as well as your followers, to engage customers. For instance, online marketing expert Amy Portfield asked her page followers to vote on a graphic for her email newsletter. She could have easily chosen her own graphic, but the idea was to get people involved and feeling like they were part of a key decision.

Superfans go out of their way to support your business, evangelizing your products and services to potential new customers.

Create a sense of community

As you begin to interact with your followers, look for opportunities to connect superfans with one another. Create a community of people who love your brand to amplify their support and reinforce their brand loyalty.

“Human beings naturally want to be with other people who get them. Incredible things happen when you, as the leader of a brand, can build these group opportunities and community connections,” wrote Social Media Examiner. “They not only love the person, movie, or show, they love that they’ve found one another, which elevates the brand even further.”

How can you connect people? Share user-generated content on your social media pages. Create events exclusively for your superfans. Host virtual forums where you solicit feedback from your best fans, allowing them to connect and discuss your brand on video chats. Events, meetups, and virtual forums are a great way to drive affinity among your superfan community.

Reward superfans for their loyalty

Superfans, crucially, aren’t in it for an incentive. These people truly just love your brand and want to see your business succeed. Nevertheless, it’s good to show you appreciate their efforts on your behalf.

If you already have a rewards program, offer additional points for sharing your posts on their social media accounts. Create a separate tier for your superfans where loyalty perks outstrip other tiers. Rewards don’t have to be monetary; they can be as simple as giving someone early access to a new product, hosting an exclusive event, or featuring their customer testimonial on your YouTube channel. Sometimes all it takes is a little recognition to keep your superfans super happy.

[Read more: How to Monetize Your YouTube Channel]

CO— aims to bring you inspiration from leading respected experts. However, before making any business decision, you should consult a professional who can advise you based on your individual situation.

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