Word of Mouth Marketing: What It Is and How to Make It Work

Word of Mouth Marketing: What It Is and How to Make It Work

To stand out in today's ultra-competitive market, you need more than simply a website and a solid e-commerce platform. Planning ahead and making the most of opportunities is more important than ever! Some successful businesses, like Netflix or Spotify, seem to have grown with little to no work, yet one of their main secrets is often word-of-mouth marketing. You've probably told a friend about a great new restaurant you found, or mentioned some great new SaaS tools you've been using in casual chat. However, it may be puzzling because word of mouth appears to be something that just happens. When people are satisfied with a product or service, they are more likely to talk positively about it with their friends and family, which is the foundation of word-of-mouth marketing (WOMM).

Understanding Word-of-Mouth Marketing

Word-of-mouth marketing is different from spontaneous word-of-mouth about a company's products or services because companies can promote, support, or otherwise affect it. This is called "seeding." Word-of-mouth advertising is a powerful tool since it can spark a domino effect of new relationships. It's possible to receive encouragement from a company in a variety of formats. In order to get people talking about your product, you need either exceed their expectations or provide them with exclusive services. Providing excellent customer service is another method, as is expanding the channels through which customers can talk to one another and spread the word about your products and services. Thanks to the ease of sharing and advertising, this is ideally suited for social media-based customer care.

Why Your Business Needs WOMM

Almost nine in ten people throughout the world that is 88% think they are more likely to trust a recommendation from someone they know, than any other form of promotion. When your customers believe that your business values their feedback, they develop warmer feelings toward your business. And that’s how you build connections! A survey conducted in 2021 found that 42% of customers hear about Black-owned businesses through word of mouth. This is why so many businesses have salespeople who conduct in-person or over-the-phone conversations with clients to get their opinions on their products and services. We understand it can be tempting to overdo it with word-of-mouth marketing because spreading the word about a product is as simple as attending a promotional event or interacting with a brand's social media page. So, the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) created guidelines for proper behavior. You’ll see that there's actually no need to deceive, and that the most effective word-of-mouth marketing methods are believable, social, repeatable, measurable, and polite.

Word-of-mouth marketing is good for both customers and businesses. Recent researches found that 92% of people trust the words and opinions of their friends and family more than any type of advertising. WOMM is so undeniably successful because people pay close attention to the words and deeds of people they love and trust. Another poll with a thousand people found that 55% of them heard about a product from someone else and 40% of them did what was suggested and bought something.

Types of Word of Mouth Marketing

There are more opportunities for word-of-mouth advertising now than ever before, thanks to the proliferation of digital channels for communicating and building positive relations with your consumers. These are just a few examples of how WOMM is typically put to use in a commercial setting.

· Publicity
· Buzz Marketing
· Viral Marketing
· Blogging
· Emotional Marketing
· Referral Marketing
· Social Media Marketing

Make Your WOMM Campaigns Shine

If you want your word-of-mouth marketing efforts to be successful, you need to have a fantastic product or service and a company that people are proud to stand behind. Are you making something that people will buy and rave about? Would they recommend your products to their loved ones and coworkers? If that's the case, then you need only put in a little work to get your most devoted customers to start building your brand for you.

Create personas to learn about your audience

Create fictitious representative examples of your target customers to better understand them. The best way to spark a grassroots movement is to focus on an issue that only a small subset of the population is facing. If you can narrow the focus of the issue, it will feel more relevant to the listener. That's why it's important to address issues that really hit home for your target demographic, so they'll welcome you into their life and spread the word about your business. It's important to note that the issue doesn't need to be deeply personal for it to be considered thus.

Know your product, service, company, and industry

Learn as much as you can about your industry and your goods. To ensure the success of your word-of-mouth marketing initiatives, be sure to involve not just your product marketing team but also your customer care agents. A further requirement is familiarity with the mission and values of your organization. Have you determined how your company will respond to the major issues facing your sector? Prospects and customers may ask you questions about any facet of your product or service, your business, or the industry as a whole. These are the qualities that inspire confidence in your audience, which is essential if you want them to spread the word about you. You can't expect people to put their names on the line for you unless they have faith in you and respect you as an industry leader.

Build a close-knit social media community

That can only be accomplished through extensive research into the preferences of your potential customers. How do you know what online services they are using to talk to one another? Learn whether or not your audience prefers the more niche social network like Quora or the more ubiquitous ones like Facebook. However, nuance is crucial when developing a robust social media community. If you want to strike the right chord with your readers, you need to tune into the channels they prefer. If you want to be considered a reliable by you consumers, you need to make it a habit to check in on and engage with your community on a regular basis. It's crucial that their success is intrinsically linked to yours. In this way, you can build a fan base that will not only champion you, but also sing your praises from the rooftops.

Identify community influencers

Once you've established a strong social network, you'll be in a position to identify the key opinion formers among your circle of friends. But don't stop there; expand your search to non-local thought leaders. Influencers often share characteristics such as being first to adopt a new technology or trend, having a large online following, and being content creators (such as bloggers) or journalists (who are always first with breaking news). Recruit them to your cause and leverage their influence to spread word of your wares.

Who influences your influencers?

Your opinion leaders may be free-thinking, but they must have a source for their knowledge. How do you know which news sources they trust the most? Which periodicals do they read like the Bible? With which groups do they have contact? Make an effort to not only keep up with what these opinion leaders are saying, but also market to them and establish relationships within their communities. To get your brand the exposure it needs to generate word-of-mouth buzz, you should participate in these communities on a regular basis, either as a contributor or a guest.

Don't censor negative comments

If you're serious about word-of-mouth advertising, you have to be able to let go of your brand's narrative. The whole point of using word-of-mouth marketing is to have people talk about you. Yet they are free to express themselves in any way they see fit, to anyone they so desire. However, you are free to direct the dialogue. Make sure there aren't any unresolved issues hanging around first. Be the one to spill the bad news and head off any potential PR disasters. Additionally, you can promote only the features of your product or service that you deem most important. Keep in mind that word-of-mouth spreads quickly, so it's important to ensure that the positives outweigh the negatives when communicating with the public.

Consider using exclusivity

It may be a good idea to limit access to your new product or service at launch. You can get the most useful feedback from beta testers if you include influential members of your community. Once they do, they can spread the word to their influential friends and help your product go viral. People want what they can't have, so a highly targeted audience will spread the word about your product even if just out of curiosity. In addition, they will hear about it from a trusted source within their own social circle or place of employment.

Why Is Word-of-Mouth Marketing So Important?

When done right, word-of-mouth advertising can be a powerful tool for expanding market share, attracting new clients, establishing credibility, and retaining existing ones. There are a variety of marketing strategies that companies use to encourage satisfied customers to spread the word about their company. Businesses spark consumer chatter, and research shows that people put the most stock in the recommendations of those closest to them. Therefore, investing in word-of-mouth promotion may yield better results and save money.

The Bottom Line

Advertising through positive word-of-mouth (WOM) occurs when one customer tells another about their positive experience with a product or service. The best part about word-of-mouth marketing is that it helps businesses grow without draining their budgets on expensive advertising campaigns. Word-of-mouth (WOM) marketing is most often encountered during social gatherings, such as dinners, conversations over text, and chance meetings. Buzz, viral media, blogs, and social media marketing can also be used to establish this.