2 Ways to Get People Talking About Your Business
There are many advantages of word of mouth advertising. First of all, it is virtually free. By providing excellent service or a valuable product, a business owner can turn normal customers into raving evangelists, spreading the good word from person to person. Then, if those people talk to 20 people, and those people talk to 20 people… well, you get the point. It’s a great way to easily spread the word about your unique selling propositions – letting your customers do your marketing leg work for you.
Not only does this word of mouth advertising give you a cost-advantage in terms of marketing, it lends credibility to your product or service that simply cannot be gained from text on a website or brochure. Face it, people trust their friends way more than they trust you, so a positive word from someone’s bestie or grandma can go a long way towards influencing their buying behavior.
This is a double-edged sword, though.
People are more likely to share negative experiences than positive ones, especially online. This makes sense. You never tell anyone about your uneventful ride to work, but the day you have a wreck or get a ticket, everyone hears the story. You expect to get to work safely, so doing so is not news. You’re surprised when something out of the ordinary happens, so you want to tell your friends about it. Your customer’s interactions with your business are exactly the same.
In a recent study of more than 1,000 people who have had experiences with customer service branches of mid-sized companies, 95% reported telling someone about a bad experience versus just 87% telling someone about a good one. Those who suffered at the hands of a business’s customer service department were also more likely – approximately 50% more – to blast that business’s poor performance on social media, amplifying the reach of the negative words.
So, you know that you need to generate buzz and have your customers sharing your story, but how do you do it the right way? Two of the most common strategies are networking and positive brand messaging.
Strategy 1- Networking
Getting out in the community and shaking a few hands (maybe even kissing a few babies) is a great way to build up your word of mouth advertising, especially when done strategically. Find community influencers who have a lot of credibility to other individuals. Make sure they understand who you are and what you do. You want them to trust you enough to go out and talk to the people that they know on your behalf.
Developing a great reputation in your community is another way to really increase your business’s recognition. You can do this in a lot of different ways. You can host functions, charity events, or provide your talents and assistance to other people’s events. You can work with other local businesses to provide bundled services or special promotions. The options here are only limited by your imagination. Being known in your community as a dependable, active go-to person or group can only help your reputation.
Strategy 2- Positive Brand Image
The second important strategy to word of mouth advertising is creating a positive brand image.
Creating a positive image is really not all that hard. Think about the people who you do business with – the people who you know, like, and trust. What about them makes you do business with them? Think about why people are drawn to others whom they know, like and trust. It’s because they do what they say they’re going to do. They return their calls. They do things without asking for things in return. They look to offer value to those around them, not simply make sales and that’s important. It’s not always about you. Putting others first will help you in creating that positive image.
Look to Build Lasting Relationships
Successful business relationships are a long-term game. If you look to provide value to those around you and establish partnerships that are mutually beneficial, long-lasting relationships will come.
What strategies do you use to promote word of mouth advertising?