Even with all the clever analytics tools and marketing tricks we have access to these days, there’s still a lot of room for one of the oldest forms of marketing known to man: word of mouth. Simply getting people talking about your brand, whether it’s while they’re chatting with friends or posting on social media, is a great way to raise awareness and hook more prospects. Here are a few effective ways to stimulate word of mouth marketing…
Provide a Great Service
The first thing to look at when you want to get people talking about your company is… well, the company! Take a step back and ask yourself a few questions about your business as it stands today. Do you provide above-average products? What about your customer service and support? Try to put yourself in your customer’s’ shoes, and think about how the way you’re running things affects their overall experience. If you find that anything’s sub-standard, then this is the first thing you need to change. While there are more direct methods of stimulating a conversation about your brand, simply making sure that you’re giving your customers a great service is a sure-fire way to get people to recommend you to friends and family.
Give them an Incentive
Providing an excellent service is a great way to start stimulating word-of-mouth marketing, but sometimes it’s not enough. Many of your customers will take a little push to start talking about your brand and what makes it great. A simple, but highly effective way to do this, is dangling some kind of incentive in front of them in return for talking about your product or service. Open a gift certificate maker, come up with an attractive, but financially feasible offer, and then give it to people in return for reviews and referrals. You may even want to use a tiered system, where you give out greater rewards for people who leave longer reviews. Sure, you may get people who only do it for the reward, but every time they play ball it will have the potential to reach other, more interested customers. Incentive programs can be especially helpful in the early stages of the business.
Reach Out to Influencers
The whole idea behind word of mouth marketing is the more people who talk about your business in a positive way, the more people will be convinced that your product or service is worth the money. However, it’s important to remember that some mouths are going to be more beneficial to your campaign than others. If you’re selling soccer supplies, for example, getting Lionel Messi to endorse it is going to be much more effective than a recommendation from your average joe. If you can reach out to major industry influencers and get them talking about your brand, more people will listen, and those people will be more motivated to talk about your brand themselves. Try to make yourself known subtly, by liking or commenting on their social media pages or blog, before you contact them directly and ask for anything specific.