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supplements customer advocacy

Unleashing Wellness Warriors: The hidden advocates of the supplement industry

Rosie Brown
By Rosie Brown — February 22, 2024 -

Read time: 5 minutes

The US supplement category was worth around $57 billion last year, according to Future Market Insights, and the global market is projected to hit a valuation of $349 billion by 2026. 

From traditional roots in ancient medicine to a cornerstone of modern wellness, the supplement industry has transformed dramatically. Once small-scale remedies for nutrient deficiencies, supplements now represent a diverse and growing market that includes vitamins, minerals, herbs, drinks, gummies, protein powders and any other consumables that “supplement” the diet with nutritional ingredients.

Looking at growth indicators closer to home, one supplement brand collaborating with Mention Me has achieved remarkable success over the past 12 months, noting a 30% surge in new customer acquisition compared to the prior year. Their story is not unique: We’ve had the privilege of working with some of the world’s top supplement brands, and our latest insights reveal an impressive median referral conversion rate of 6.37% across the category, eclipsing the performance of competitors in the space and redefining health and beauty industry benchmarks. 

Through our work and the data it's generated, we've unearthed the secret ingredient fuelling the success of the supplement sector's leading names: An advocacy-first approach. 

Let's begin by exploring why the supplements industry presents a prime opportunity for leveraging customer advocacy. 


The Wellness Wave

An increasing number of consumers are turning to supplements not just as an impulse buy but as daily essentials to ensure their nutritional gaps are filled, immunity supported, and overall wellness bolstered—a trend intensely magnified by heightened health awareness in the post-pandemic world.

Building on this growth, the supplements boom is further energised by the societal shift towards anti-aging products and regimens. With a societal emphasis on youthfulness, people are complementing botox and laser treatments with dietary supplements like collagen that promise rejuvenation from the inside out. 

Customers are advocating for these holistic solutions, sharing their success stories and driving peer recommendations. This organic promotion by customer advocates underscores a 'beauty from within' philosophy, which aligns with a proactive, preventative approach to wellness. 

Absolute Collagen's Customer Advocates

Take, for instance, Absolute Collagen’s dedicated #Absoluters Facebook group a space where brand fans gather to share their personal success stories.


Fertile Ground for Customer Advocacy

Reflecting on these personal narratives, the intimate nature of health improvements becomes a powerful catalyst for  customer advocacy. When daily routines are shared in casual conversations or uploaded as ‘What I eat in a day’ posts by influencers online, they become personal endorsements.


A Symprove Customer Advocate

Health influencer @zannavandijk advocating for Symprove on her Instagram account.


Trust: The Ultimate Endorsement

In an eCommerce landscape rife with brands that over-promise and under-deliver, coupled with an overwhelming abundance of information, consumers are increasingly relying on trusted sources. 

The significance of genuine recommendations from friends, family and trusted influencers becomes more pronounced, particularly within the supplement industry. Here, the ramifications of an ill-informed purchase are not just disappointing—they could have adverse physiological implications. 

To highlight the value of customer advocacy in this space, a supplement brand working with Mention Me has seen its purchase rate from personal referrals over the last 12 months stand at an astounding 85% above the health and beauty industry's average. This statistic not only underscores the power of peer endorsements but also serves as a testament to the critical role that trusted recommendations play in influencing consumer decisions in today's supplement market.

Nourishing Growth: Harnessing the Power of Customer Advocacy

Supplement brands navigating the choppy waters of digital marketing face a significant challenge: identifying and nurturing their customer advocates. Without the insights provided by Customer Advocacy Intelligence Data, brands are sailing blind, unaware of who their key supporters are in a sea of customers.

Mention Me steps in as the compass for brands, empowering them to discover these advocates—those who not only purchase but also passionately recommend products to friends and family, thus fuelling organic, earned growth. This crucial data enables brands to constructively engage with these customers, transforming them from one-time buyers into lifelong brand champions.

With Mention Me's powerful advocacy intelligence, brands gain a clear picture of who is driving word-of-mouth marketing, enabling them to segment, nurture, and activate their brand advocates effectively, ensuring that these vital contributors to business growth are never overlooked.


Key Metrics for Evaluating Advocacy Programs

When evaluating any Advocacy Programs it's important to look for trackable customer advocacy metrics that can distinguish between active and passive advocacy, identifying customers who are true promoters of your brand.

This will help you and your marketing team to then recognise and nurture your supplement brand's champions, who play a crucial part in generating testimonials, referrals and social proof.


A Case Study in Customer Advocacy Success

Demonstrating these principles in action, let’s examine a case study in customer advocacy success from one of our clients.

Symprove's customer advocacy program harnesses the power of word-of-mouth strategically. With their Name Share® capability via Mention Me, they empower customers to advocate in the way that comes most naturally—through personal referral—contributing to acquiring 51% of referred customers. By aligning with consumer behaviours and leveraging the inherent trust in personal networks, Symprove turns their customer base into brand advocates.

Symprove's Customer Advocacy Program

Symprove’s share messages featuring Name Share® functionality. 

Read the Symprove Case Study.


Leveraging Customer Advocacy Data and Personalisation

Symprove's integration of Mention Me’s customer advocacy intelligence data into CRM systems like Klaviyo boosts their marketing's effectiveness. It’s about delivering the right message to the right person with precision— pivoting towards more tailored, personal customer journeys that contribute to a great customer experience and a happy customer base.

Offering a practitioner's insight, Rose Wilkes, a Customer Retention Specialist at Symprove, explains: “Our brand advocates are highly valuable, and the friends they bring along spend 18% more than other customers, helping to continue the growth we experienced during the pandemic. Now we’re excited to see how we can use our first-party advocacy data across our wider martech stack to reduce CPA and give our best customers the VIP treatment.” 


Customer Advocacy's Economic Edge

It's clear that the growth isn't just in volume but also in value. Advocates aren't just voices—they're also a brand’s most valuable customers. They tend to spend more, with Symprove noting an 18% higher average order value (AOV) from referred customers, highlighting the dual benefit of customer advocacy programs: expanded reach and economic gain. 


The Advocacy Advantage: Amplifying Growth in the Supplement Industry

For supplement brands globally, the trends point toward a clear conclusion: investing in customer advocacy is a foundational strategy for sustained growth. Brands that can inspire and enable their base to share their positive customer experiences are poised to stand out in an increasingly crowded market.

If you're a customer leader at a supplement brand, the data speaks for itself; embracing an advocacy-first approach is not just beneficial—it's essential for riding the wave of industry growth and active advocates. Now is the time to cultivate the healthiest habit of all: leveraging the voice of your customers. To understand how to deploy customer advocacy marketing for your brand, talk to one of our experts today and we'll help you get started.



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