10 Jul 2017

Social Media and Brand Advocacy

For many companies the most untapped resource is their customers itself. Brand advocates can take the customer relationship a step further and create positive sentiments within their communities about the brand online as well as offline.

A brand advocacy program can prove to be much more powerful and effective compared to traditional PR, marketing or advertising methods. By leveraging existing fans and followers on social media, one can create or increase brand awareness, develop customer loyalty and get relevant real-time feedback for any product and service the brand has to offer.

“Social media & brand advocacy fit perfectly by amplifying consumer voice. Trust is huge! 74% of your audience trusts other consumers.” – @ItsJeffHiggins

Quoting Jeff Higgins, word of mouth just isn’t face to face anymore. It’s cross app/platform and your brand becomes a daily lifestyle!

If you think you can go with a common brand advocacy strategy on social media, then you are highly mistaken! Consumers are omnipresent and brands need to listen and figure out where they are and what they are saying to build a relevant brand advocacy strategy.

“Social media adoption is a must for brands that want to spur employee engagement.” –@maxthemarketer

response by your favorite brand or acknowledgement of your feedback is and will always be ‘invaluable’ and goes a long way in building a deeper connect/ relationship with the consumers.

“Social media has facilitated brand advocacy by helping to humanize the brand. Brands are now more relatable & approachable.” –@ideabloke

It’s one of the best ways to determine the direction your brand is going or needs to be going! By observing what the customers want, understanding their behavior on social media, brands can continuously tweak their advocacy strategies to best serve their customers.

“Social listening is the key to keep a track of conversations online and responding to the consumers as and when the brands get mentioned.”

How fast should a brand respond to it’s customers?

In the real-time NOW world, humans seem to have lost patience! Correct? Think about it, you had a bad experience with Dominos Pizza, what would you do?

Take a pic of your pizza

Post it online with your negative feedback

Tag Dominos with hash tags the brand wouldn’t ever want to see!

Leave a bad review on Zomato perhaps?

Call up the customer service to get your Pizza replaced etc. etc. etc.

In just a matter of few seconds, the brand has been shammed for a bad customer experience.

What must a brand do NOW?

As a consumer, all you will expect is a quick or immediate response by them for the feedback shared.

“Social customer service has to have the “Now” factor. Respond immediately and solve any issues. Responses over 5 mins are now too long!” – @ItsJeffHiggins

That said, in my opinion, I feel the brands that respond more meaningfully are way better than those who automate response to negative feedback.

“Automation without human interaction is soulless & cold!” – @Socially_M


While there are technologies like chat bots/messenger bots which makes for a brilliant customer service strategy, presence of a human is very important. There must be someone at the back-end to track orders / review feedback and also personalize the response as and when required.

There are no two thoughts about having a “human” touch to the brand.

At the end of the day, you need to create a good experience for your customers if you want to survive in the competitive environment.

“Love it when I get a “Hi Kirk” response instead of “Dear Customer.” – @KirkHazlett

Social media helps a brand to have personal connection with their audience and develop brand advocates over time. Social is all about people and relationships. Whether you are a brand or an individual, if you are constantly listening to your customers or followers, giving them what they want, anticipating their needs, engaging with them, delighting them by solving problems or adding value without having to be asked, you are on your way to build a community and network of advocates who will stand by you through the thick and thin!

It’s really that simple…

As Brian Fanzo says, ” Show YOU care!

Social media in the future will help brands shape customer experience. Positive word of mouth and customer experience must be the focus of any brand because it can make or break the future of a brand and its advocates.

What are your thoughts? I’d love to read them in the comment section below!

The article first appeared on LinkedIn.



Ancita always came across as an eager learner and willing to go the extra mile. She's got good language and social media skills and uses these to her advantage. She was also dependable and I believe she would be a good asset in any organization. I wish her well for the future.

Rony Thomas, Head of Communications, Amazon


Ankita supported us in connecting with the CMO community on social media in India - she is knowledgeable, articulate, prompt and superbly organized. She is fast to learn and agile to create business impact, which distinguishes her in the projects she works on.

Rajesh Kumar Jindal, Vice President, Head of Marketing, SAP


Although Ancita was part of the PR team, she gradually started taking interest in digital communication which I believe is an apt field for her. She effectively used her communication skills learnt in PR to deliver results in digital media which is a much needed talent in the industry. We worked together on google maps and on a project called PMOAppContest chat where Ancita ably demonstrated her creative and storytelling skills. She defined the flow of the chat and was a key campaign owner. The initiative was a huge success in India. Ancita is committed, disciplined and a diligent person and I am sure she is a great asset to her team and her organization.

Abhilasha Padhy, Communications Manager, Google


Ancita is a Star performer at Six Degrees. She takes initiative and has a ‘To Do’ attitude. This has reflected in her taking up the onus of focusing her skills on Digital within the firm during the last one year and even on her own through an initiative like the SocialPowWow. She has a strong understanding of developing engaging content for audiences to increase relevance for brands. We believe that she has great potential to develop as an integrated communications professional.

Rishi Seth, Group CEO, Cohn & Wolfe Six Degrees


PR professional, blogger, digital enthusiast. Driven, hardworking and result oriented, Ankita is always game to take up new challenges. Energetic and efficient, trust her to get things done. With keen interest in digital marketing she has been involved in various integrated comms campaigns and delivered successfully.

Cijo Mathew, General Manager, 20:20 MSL


Ancita is one of the most dependable people I have ever come across. She is diligent, attentive and sharp which makes her a great asset for the team as well as clients. Within few years in PR, Ancita managed to build great media relations and helped her team crack some of the best stories. She is a great team player

Priyank Dubey, Communications Lead, ESPN


Ancita and I have been working closely for 4 years now & it has been an inspiring journey thus far. It has been amazing to see her transformation from an curious social media learner to a professional digital media expert. Her knack for the understanding the digital landscape is special. While she certainly is an expert in various aspects of digital marketing but her initiative "SocialPowWow" has been really impressive. Today it's one of the most popular Twitter chats in India. She is great human being, hard worker & thinker. Her infectious smile can be an asset in any work environment. Wishing her all the success in any endeavours she chooses for herself.

Nitin Bhatia, Managing Director, Meltwater


A dedicated, smart and media savvy publicist. Her sound understanding about the real estate business and clarity of thought makes her a go-to person for all communication queries. Strong command over english language and a collaborative team player makes her a best fit for a challenging role. I highly recommend her for a profile that requires a go-getter, passionate, dedicated, knowledgeable and intelligent person.

Nikhil Savio Gutal, Deputy Manager, Marketing & Communication, Cushman & Wakefield


Ankita was one of the most diligent and hardworking students in our batch. There's a lot to learn from her, esp. her sense of punctuality, sincerity and work efficiency. It really was a lot of fun being together in the same class during our post graduation programme. I wish her good luck for all her future endeavours.

Sayani Bagchi, Area Sales Manager, Britannia Industries Limited


Ancita is an extremely dedicated resource and a great value add for an organization. Her attention to detail, intelligence and proactive approach has always delighted the people she works with and the clients she services. Ancita is absolutely great with digital media and gives creative, yet practical ideas. I wish her all the best for future!

Shreya Sabharwal, Vice President, Ernst & Young


Ancita has been a valued colleague at Six Degrees. She's focused and dedicated at work and brings in fresh thinking and approaches to mandates that she's entrusted with. Equally importantly she's a stickler for details and micro-manages things till the work gets done!

Rahul Mishra, General Manager, Cohn & Wolfe India


Ancita is a thorough professional who is particular about deadlines and quality of work. You can always bank upon Ancita on any work that is on her task list. A proactive individual who not only pushes herself but her team too.

Siddharth Kumar, Deputy General Manager, Cohn & Wolfe India


Ancita is a thorough professional and absolutely meticulous with her work. She took a lead in Digital when it was the upcoming hottest trend and that is commendable. Always ready to pitch in with ideas on a campaign,love her energy. She is and will be an asset to any organization that she chooses to be associated with. It has been a pleasure working with her here.

Pooja Poddar Jain, Account Director, Cohn & Wolfe Six Degrees


Ancita is very good in her craft of digital PR and comes with sound knowledge on digital. She is a great team player and has shown great capabilities to lead any team project. She is a great colleague, it has always been a pleasure to work with her and is very easy to work with.

Shalini Gunashekar, Associate Account Director, Cohn & Wolfe Six Degrees


SocialPowWow chat is one of the most innovative conversations involving small businesses and thought leaders. Ancita deserves a lot of credit for being the go-getter in bringing everyone together.

Cheval John, Founder & CEO, VallanoMedia, LLC, Houston


I'm impressed and inspired by Ancita Satija for creating an initiative as cool as SocialPowWow and making it a movement. How many young professionals go above and beyond to make a mark and leave a legacy? Ancita has set an example for others to follow. I am sure this weekly tweet chat will grow to become much more than just a chat.

Amith Prabhu, Founding Dean @SCoReInd, CoFounder @PRAXISInd & @PRomiseFdn


SocialPowWow is one of those must attend twitter chats like #TwitterSmarter #Hootchat #MediaChat with vibrant, engaged communities discussing relevant & trending topics on social media and with a smart and friendly host like Ancita!

Zen Yinger, CEO, ZenSocial, North Carolina


Congratulations #SocialPowWow for completing two years. You have always been amazing in getting interesting people to exchange views on interesting and relevant topics. You are the platform that brings out-of-the-box minds together across the globe in the world of clatter. Stay there with us -- as a friend, as a trend spotter, and stay relevant. Wishes for many more.

Sounak Mitra, Associate Editor @moneycontrolcom


I had the pleasure of working with Ancita, during my time at Burson Cohn and Wolfe. Ancita is affable and very easy to work with - great qualities to have in a team mate! She's a dedicated employee whose positive spirit helps guide the team that she’s in. Her experience and knowledge in digital, from copywriting to social media strategies makes her an asset to any organisation.

Thimah Hameed, Vice President - Regional Digital Strategy Marketing Lead, DBS Bank