4 November 2017
Unless it’s you. Is it?
Dear *you* who believes that Brand Evangelist <cue choir of angels> is a thing in B2B, I ask you: how often are you referring or evangelizing regularly on behalf of any one company? How often are you evangelizing regularly on behalf of several companies?
Right? Not really that much. But no one is. Sure, you’ll get the occasional odd duck who is willing to proclaim vendor love from the rooftops (their legal team must not be paying close attention).
If you’ve ever sold, or been close enough to a sales team to see upclose how challenging referrals are to get, you may understand why a brand evangelist is orders of magnitude harder to achieve than someone who is simply willing to refer.
As the odd duck who evangelizes and refers frequently, I don’t get why more people don’t. But I think it’s likely a combo of 2 things:
- It’s uncomfortable to refer, let alone evangelize. Sticking our necks out is not in our DNA.
- Legalities – your customer may well love you, but if they work for an entity big enough to have a legal team. Well, eh, good luck to you and your brand evangelist KPIs.
Let there be referral love on earth and let it begin with you.
But all is not lost. There is you. And you have a voice. You have vendors, partners, colleagues, peers, direct reports – plenty of people and companies that make your work life immeasurably better. Here are all the ways you can share some B2B love:
- Tell them how fabulous they are and why.
- Write a spontaneous LinkedIn recommendation. (you lose points if you tick an endorsement box. sheesh.)
- Offer to be a reference for a company you love.
- Battle your legal team to actually be a testimonial your vendor can use publicly.
- Set a regular reminder (weekly, monthly, quarterly): “Is there someone I love that I haven’t referred recently?”
- If you have a colleague or a friend who could use a vendor you’re happy with, tell them. Connect them.
- Record a wee video about how fab the vendor is and allow them to use it in meetings.
There are loads of ways to share the referral love. Stop chasing the brand evangelist unicorn. BE the brand evangelist unicorn.
Be the referral love you wish to see in the world.