What others have to say about your products or company is a key influence on what they buy. A recommendation from a friend or colleague is something people trust, not to mention that research shows it is much more effective than traditional advertising.
So what are you doing to promote word-of-mouth in your marketing plan? Word-of-mouth marketing is defined as, “Giving people a reason to talk about your products and services, and making it easier for that conversation to take place.”
Word-of-mouth can be fostered and integrated into your everyday business operations. An effective word-of-mouth campaign starts with any interaction with your customer. Do you truly listen to your customers, asking for and listening to their feedback? Is it easy for customers to tell their friends about you and your products? Do influential people know about you and speak positively about your services?
An effective word-of-mouth campaign starts with empowering your customers to share their experiences. It is this voice that can either strengthen or doom your brand. Don’t forget that a dissatisfied customer can be just as powerful as a happy one.
Word-of-mouth marketing techniques start with a dialogue with your customers. The basic elements are:
• Educating people about your products and services.
• Identifying people who are most likely to share their opinions.
• Providing tools that make it easier to share information.
• Studying how, where, and when opinions are being shared.
• Listening and responding to supporters and detractors.
Is word-of-mouth advertising right for you? In reality, it is already happening, and you may not even know about its effects. Making it part of your marketing strategy is an inexpensive way to concentrate and listen to your customers while making them your greatest ally.