Finding Influencers to Champion Your Brand: Technology has changed Marketing

If you’ve been a reader of Smallbiztechnology.com for a few months, you know that I’m a fervent champion of Verizon Wireless service. They don’t pay me a dime, but I’m simply a customer that continues to be thrilled with the service they provide.
I’ve called them on several occasions for help with an issue and it’s not just that the issue was resolved it’s HOW the issue was resolved.
Even going into their retail stores, their staff are friendly and quite helpful.
What’s my point?
You need to find and nurture these kinds of people for your own marketing efforts. Spending money on radio, TV or print is all fine and good and there’s times for that.
However, if you have a limited budget, but a smart and savvy employee (or yourself) they can generate a lot of buzz and visibility for your product over time.
Blogs – Finding bloggers who are passionate about a particular topic and have an audience of more than one is one way
Discussion groups – Finding active discussion groups (be it email or web based ) is another way. Maybe you’re product is an add-on to Quickbooks. Why not visit Intuit’s Jump Up site and HELP small businesses on this site with their businesses. Give 80% help while softly giving visibility to your own product.
For example, visit Dell’s 360 site and see what customers are there and need help. If they are small businesses in Dell’s forums and you sell a complimentary product why not dive in.
Information Week has a wonderful article on finding influencers who can promote your brand.
People are going to talk and write about your product. The art and science is finding the right people to connect with to encourage them to speak about your product to others.
Be careful how you do this though.
Bernaise source writes Throwing tons of money at all the influentials in the world won’t work if the product itself doesn’t meet a genuine unmet need. The brand experience has to be a reflection of the personal creativity of the user in order for a product to translate from a small circle to mass consumption.

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Ramon Ray, Editor & Technology Evangelist, Smallbiztechnology.com . Editor and Founder, Smart Hustle Magazine Full bio at http://www.ramonray.com . Check him out on Google Plus, Twitter or Facebook