The loyal customers, the ravings fans and the company evangelists get most of the digital ink these days… and for good reason. But don’t completely forget the other end of the funnel, the Newbie.
If you give the Newbie the right tools, they can give back in many ways. Let’s look at three:
Perspective – Newbies offer a fresh set of eyes to challenge why things are they way that they are. Their eyes are not yet opened and often do not see the ruts that many old-timers fall into. Your website layout, your old company policies and the status quo may all be challenged by someone who’s new to your offerings.
Reminders – I remember the first time I experienced the Click Wheel on a friend’s iPod. I remember how cool it was. A Newbie’s reaction can be very revitalizing to a Loyalist or to the company itself. When a wide-eyed Newbie mingles with a Loyalist, they often reinforce in the Loyalist’s mind the very reason(s) that drew them to your product in the first place. They replay in their mind their first encounter and the old feelings return and are strengthened.
Vitality – Newbies can act as a barometer for growth. Just like a healthy body needs a constant intake of nutritional fuel, so does a healthy company. Are you getting a healthy dose of Newbies?
But of course, all of this is for not if you do not provide a proper forum for Newbies to talk to you – a blog, a feedback form, an e-mail address, a “feedback messenger” attitude from the front liners, etc. Give the Newbies a voice and many will talk.