“Minority” Rules…

The minority rules and can passionately spread the word through Word-of-Mouth

I was having a conversation the other day with the CEO of a well established company about business strategy for his company and how social media could play a role in helping them grow. There was a part of the conversation that really struck a chord with him and I think it will with other leaders.  My question(s) were in regard to his audience, specifically his customers.  What I asked was, “How many total customers do you currently have?  Of those, how many represent approximately 80% of your annual revenues?  (It was the usual 80/20 rule where about 20% of his customers generated 80% of his revenues)…of these 20%, how many would you say were “Advocates” (those who “proactively” talk about you to others)?”  Then I stopped and listened for the next hour…

He shared they had only about 2% Advocates!  Of all the great things they were doing for their customers and others, only 2% were proactively out there singing his praises.  When I put it in this light, he wasn’t very happy about that number.  But I explained this was not atypical, many businesses have a small number of advocates because the “normal” trend is to focus on “getting more” customers, not turning the ones you have into “advocates.”  He agreed, this was their focus as well with their sales and marketing teams.  I could tell he was rethinking this decision during our entire conversation.

What this told him is that “a very small minority of customers are out there talking about you to other potential customers – and this is your MOST POWERFUL group of “sales people” you could ever have – a customer telling a potential customer how great you are.”  Now he was really depressed!  But I assured him, there is light at the end of the tunnel (and it isn’t an oncoming train).  Look at it this way, you have the opportunity to convert the other 98% into “advocates” – just think what that would do to your sales and business if this happened. Now he was totally excited and practically jumping up and down thinking about how BIG the opportunity was rather than where they were.

I suggested two simple concepts: 1) design a strategy to increase the number of advocates; and 2) create a social media strategy to “arm” this group with great content they could freely share to prospective audiences.  If he committed to do these two things, he could completely leverage the “minority” of customers to capture a “majority” of market share.  The Minority always rules because they are the ones who are most passionate, loyal, and love to spread great things about you via word-of-mouth (individually and through social channels).  He got it and couldn’t wait to start focusing on the “minority” in his business…

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One Response to “Minority” Rules…
  1. Greyson Hinchee
    December 10, 2013 | 3:12 am

    fantastic points altogether, you just gained a brand new reader.
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