Definition of Advocacy Marketing

Advocacy marketing is a strategic approach in which brands focus on cultivating strong relationships with customers, encouraging them to passionately promote and endorse their products or services. These customers, known as brand advocates, share their positive experiences and recommendations with their personal networks, thus driving brand awareness and credibility. This type of marketing harnesses the power of word-of-mouth and user-generated content to build trust and boost sales.


The phonetic pronunciation of “Advocacy Marketing” would be:/ˈæd.və.kə.si/ /ˈmɑːrkɪtɪŋ/(ăd′vŏ-kə-sē) (mär′kĭ-tĭng)

Key Takeaways

  1. Advocacy marketing involves empowering and encouraging customers to actively promote your brand, which generates trust, credibility, and valuable word-of-mouth marketing.
  2. Effective advocacy marketing programs offer incentives, recognition, and support to brand advocates, creating a mutually beneficial relationship that rewards advocates for their loyalty and passion.
  3. By leveraging user-generated content, social media, and customer surveys, advocacy marketing can gather insights to improve future campaigns and customer experiences, ultimately leading to stronger customer relationships and increased long-term revenue growth.

Importance of Advocacy Marketing

Advocacy marketing is important in the digital marketing landscape because it capitalizes on the power of satisfied customers, turning them into brand advocates who voluntarily share their positive experiences and endorse the brand to their personal networks.

This organic form of marketing is highly valuable, as people tend to trust personal recommendations from friends and family more than traditional advertising.

By harnessing the authentic voices of dedicated customers, advocacy marketing enhances brand credibility, improves online visibility, and drives higher engagement which ultimately leads to increased customer acquisition and long-term brand loyalty.


Advocacy marketing is a powerful strategy that leverages the voices of satisfied customers to strengthen brand credibility and foster organic growth. With the wealth of information and opinions available through various digital channels today, consumers increasingly rely on personal recommendations and shared experiences before making a purchasing decision.

Recognizing the influential value of these authentic endorsements, businesses have harnessed the potential of advocacy marketing to not only facilitate word-of-mouth promotion but also to build lasting relationships with engaged customers who become ardent supporters of their product or service. Advocacy marketing serves to illustrate the positive impact a brand can have on consumers’ lives, effectively swaying potential customers who trust the genuine experiences of their peers.

At the core of advocacy marketing lies the goal of creating brand ambassadors – loyal customers who, through their experiences with the product or service, naturally become reliable sources of testimonial promotion. To achieve this, companies must not only deliver exceptional customer experiences but also consistently engage with their audience through various digital channels, such as social media platforms, email marketing, and online reviews.

Encouraging customers to share their stories builds a sense of community among brand advocates and fosters new connections with potential consumers. With these devoted supporters at the forefront, businesses can successfully extend their brand’s reach, enhance credibility, and ultimately, drive revenue growth.

Examples of Advocacy Marketing

Apple’s Product Advocates: Apple is known for its loyal customer base, which consists of users who are passionate about the brand, its products, and the experience they provide. Apple enthusiasts often share their positive experiences with friends, family, and on social media, showcasing their fondness for the brand. As a result, they serve as powerful advocates for Apple, helping the company improve its brand image and attract new customers without spending significant amounts on traditional marketing campaigns.

Lululemon Ambassador Program: Lululemon, a popular athletic apparel brand, has successfully used advocacy marketing through its ambassador program. The company partners with local fitness instructors and athletes who embody the brand’s values and lifestyle. These ambassadors not only wear and promote Lululemon products, but they also host free in-store classes and other events to engage the local community. This helps Lululemon build a strong, authentic connection with its target audience through trusted, influential figures in the fitness community.

Starbucks’ #RedCupContest: During the holiday season, Starbucks releases its iconic Red Cups, often featuring creative designs that are eagerly anticipated by customers. To further engage its audience, Starbucks launched the #RedCupContest, encouraging customers to share photos of their festive beverages on social media for a chance to win prizes. This user-generated content campaign not only created buzz around the Red Cups which built anticipation for the holiday season, but also showcased customers’ personal experiences and advocacy for the brand, promoting Starbucks to their own social circles in an authentic and engaging way.

Advocacy Marketing FAQ

1. What is advocacy marketing?

Advocacy marketing is a strategy that encourages satisfied customers to actively promote a brand, product, or service to their network, thus turning them into advocates. This type of marketing relies on testimonials, word-of-mouth, and user-generated content as a way to increase brand awareness and trust among potential customers.

2. Why is advocacy marketing important?

Advocacy marketing is important because it leverages the power of peer recommendations and personal connections to build trust. Customers are more likely to try out or purchase a product when referred by someone they know and trust. In addition, advocacy marketing can help drive organic growth, increase brand awareness, and improve customer retention rates.

3. How can a business start implementing advocacy marketing?

Businesses can start implementing advocacy marketing by identifying their most satisfied customers and encouraging them to share their positive experiences with others. This can be achieved through referral programs, customer testimonials, influencer partnerships, and social media engagement. Providing incentives, such as discounts or rewards, can further encourage brand advocacy.

4. What are some common challenges in advocacy marketing?

Common challenges in advocacy marketing include identifying the right advocates, providing consistent and positive experiences, and measuring the effectiveness of campaigns. It is essential for businesses to carefully select advocates who are genuinely passionate about the brand and can effectively communicate its values to their network. Ensuring a seamless customer experience and closely monitoring campaign results can help overcome these challenges.

5. Can advocacy marketing be combined with other marketing strategies?

Yes, advocacy marketing can be combined with other marketing strategies to create a comprehensive and effective campaign. This can include content marketing, social media marketing, email marketing, and other digital and traditional strategies. Integrating advocacy marketing into existing campaigns can help to amplify the overall impact and increase the authenticity of brand messaging.

Related Digital Marketing Terms

  • Brand Ambassadors
  • User-Generated Content (UGC)
  • Referral Programs
  • Customer Testimonials
  • Influencer Partnerships

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