In part 1 of the Building a Brand Tribe series, we discussed the impact building a tribal brand can have on the success of your business. If you did not read the previous article, please do so as it provides the four (4) things that are a direct result of building a tribe.
To offer a brief overview of part 1, I shared my experience at Eggtoberfest, the annual Atlanta-based festival for Big Green Egg owners and enthusiasts. The event was one to remember as I embraced the atmosphere and enjoyed the food, music, and Eggheads (those who own & champion Big Green Egg Cookers).
My biggest takeaway from the event was that creating a brand that builds a sense of community or tribe, provides the ability to have your previous customers become your most effective salespeople.
In part 2 of this series, we’re focusing on how to approach nurturing a tribe of your own. The Big Green Egg company was created in 1974 by Ed Fisher after he served as a Naval officer. During his travels across Asia, he often encountered a ceramic rice cooker, which inspired him to later create the Big Green Egg which is often described as a barbecue grill, but it can also be used as an oven or smoker as well. The versatility of the green ceramic cooker has made it a favorite among grilling enthusiasts, and the company’s ability to understand its audience has created a wave of support that will seemingly last a lifetime.
4 criteria of nurturing a brand tribe
When thinking of establishing a brand tribe, here are four (4) things that the Big Green Egg company did to develop & grow their tribe, and you can do the same for your brand.
Create a quality product
In the case of Ed Fisher, he created a product that is used for multiple cooking purposes, it makes preparing delicious meals easy and comes with a lifetime warranty. Fisher’s Big Green Egg cookers created its own sub-category in the market and have been mimicked by several competitors, all of which are strangely located in the same city as Big Green Egg.
However, even with the competition working to convert Eggheads over to their brands, the Big Green Egg company has created a product that is consistently efficient in completing the task it was made to do, leaving a trail of individuals singing its praises, and you can do the same.
Create an online community
An online community is a gathering of people interacting and collaborating toward a common goal. When used for positive promotion, developing a community is an excellent tool for establishing loyal brand customers or tribe members.
I mention positive promotion because there are also tons of communities established to provide negative commentary about specific brands as well.
For Big Green Egg, there are multiple online communities established by Eggheads who are sharing their positive experiences, maintenance tips, recipes, and so on. This opportunity presents them with the ability to increase customer retention, provide support, and receive candid feedback.
Acknowledge and reward your audience
Investigate what your customers need. Identify your key stakeholders, from customers to employees, and define their pain points. This can be achieved via online communities.
If you create an online community or discover a customer-operated community based on their love for your product, do all you can to support it. Acknowledging their efforts and providing them with exclusive offers and so on will only strengthen their feeling to you and the community their running.
Remember that an active community will meet your business needs while also improving the user experience of its guests and members.
Keep consistent brand messaging
Deciding on creating a community is only the first step, and is often the easiest one. When thinking of building a tribe, the famous line from a Field of Dreams, “if you build it, they will come” does not apply. It’s more like “if you build it, they will not come unless you create an emotional connection,” and to keep them coming requires you never waver from your core brand message. Developing a solid plan for activation and ongoing adoption built around your brand messaging will be important in the management & growth of your tribe’s community.