| Oct 9, 2019

Brand Advocates: The Buyers Behind the Buzz (Part 2)

Building trust with consumers can be tough, and without the right people in their corner, both large and small brands may struggle to establish authentic connections with shoppers. Enter, brand advocates– individuals who have tried and liked a product, and who now want to share their positive opinions with others. Identifying and capitalizing on these advocates is incredibly important for brands, and a deeper understanding of these “buyers behind the buzz” is key to harnessing their positive influence.

In Part 1, we discussed the who, what, why and how of brand advocates – who they are, to whom they recommend brands and products, what categories are recommended most often, why brand advocates recommend brands and products, and how they go about making these recommendations.

Now that we have a high-level perspective of brand advocates’ motivations and preferences, let’s dig deeper into the data to better understand the typical brand advocate, how they vary across different sectors, and how brands can engage and retain these high-value shoppers to increase sales.

Getting to Know the Buyers Behind the Buzz

Upscale Caucasians, especially Millennial homeowners, are most likely to be brand advocates in general. However, advocates differ by sector, and there doesn’t seem to be one size fits all when you take into account different products. For example, grocery advocates skew older, while health and beauty advocates skew younger and Hispanic/Latino. Apparel advocates tend to be Hispanic/Latino with children, while electronics advocates are often young males.


Buzzworthy Behavior

Generally, brand advocates care more about product quality than the average shopper. They’re financially confident, they stay up on health trends, and they aren’t afraid to spend. They’re also more likely to make impulse buys. 

Numerator Media Consumption data tells us that, on average, 53% of brand advocates spend more than three hours per day online, and 61% spend more than three hours per day on a mobile device. 55% spend less than two hours per day watching TV. Here’s a detailed look at media consumption and behaviors.


This data suggests that the most effective way to reach brand advocates in general is through highly targeted social media messages. Although a higher percentage of brand and product recommendations happen in-person, social media is still a hotbed for sharing information.

Brand Advocates Shop Differently  

Digging deeper into the shopping behavior of brand advocates in the grocery sector, we see that these advocates spend more across the grocery sector. Advocates spend 1.28x more on candy, beverages, frozen foods, and snacks. They also purchase these categories more frequently than the average shopper. 

Grocery advocates purchase private label groceries equally compared to the average U.S. household, but psychographics indicate they look more favorable on it; advocates are 1.2x more likely to consider private label just as good as other brands and are 1.17x more likely to switch to private label when those products are on sale. 

When it comes to advertising, grocery advocates are 1.29x more likely to check ads and 1.28x more likely to trust advertised brands. Strongly representing the brand within ads and various TV or web/mobile content is important to getting the attention and support of grocery advocates, who are more likely to share recommendations of a product name than the brand.

Final Takeaways

Numerator data shows that brand advocates are, hands down, your most valuable customers. Shoppers who advocate for brands or products in your category are also a source of important insights that you can leverage to guide product development, make your marketing more effective, and increase sales. 

Given the demographic and psychographic differences seen in brand advocates across categories, it’s important for brands to analyze category-specific data to get a clear picture of their advocates. Who are they, what media are they using, and how can you leverage their media usage to drive home the quality of your products?

Want to learn more about who brand advocates are in your categories, their purchase behavior, how they share recommendations, and what media they spend the most time consuming? Reach out today to tap into the data you need to win with advocates.