There is a hot new restaurant downtown, so tell me... how did you hear about it? Did you receive a direct mail marketing postcard in your physical inbox? Did your friendly neighbor, Ryan, pop over to tell you about the restaurant’s exclusive cocktail hour, or did you happen to come across Ryan’s facebook status about it?
Most likely you saw Ryan’s facebook status, because most of us consume our daily news these days from the internet (plus you lock the door because Ryan is always barging in).
Word of mouth has changed, and thus our marketing strategies.
Word of mouth has redefined itself in today’s Marketing Strategies. Back in the day you would catch wind of such restaurant openings from your local paper or from gossiping Nancy. Now we share gossip for all to see by tweeting, posting, +1’ing, blogging, yelp’ing, pinning, uploading, stumbling, tumbling, re-blogging... alright you get the point, there are a lot of ways to share.
“You will get more word of mouth from making people happy than anything else you could possibly do.”- Andy Sernovitz
To generate business with a marketing strategy today, companies are fostering environments around their businesses in social media. Social Media platforms create a place where clients can come if they want to leave a review, provide feedback or ask questions. There has never been such an extensive forum like this. People are able to grab word of mouth from anywhere they choose on social platforms. For Example, YouTube users post videos reviewing products to their subscribers, showing how the product works and then discussing whether or not it should be purchased and facebook allows users to like specific company pages, products or services and this “endorsement” is shared with their friends.
“Don’t focus on having a great blog. Focus on producing a blog that’s great for your readers.” - Brian Clark
Remember back in the day when blogs were more journal-esque... how self centered. Marketing Strategies today call for blogs that share knowledge and unique content with readers. Companies are spreading the words they believe in by blogging about them. You mean I can get advice directly from a company's CEO? Yes! CEO’s are out there blogging, sharing their best businesses practices (check this guy out). I’m pretty impressed by the unique flow of knowledge in the blog arena, and I use it to my advantage to stay on top of what's upcoming and new. If I find something I really like, I share it with my peers, as most people do. Ever hear of buzzfeed? I share about 3 buzzfeed articles a day, and my friends return the favor by sharing additional buzzfeed articles with me.
“If there’s one reason we have done better than our peers in the Internet space over the last six years, it is because we have focused like a laser on customer experience, and that really does matter, I think, in any business. It certainly matters online, where word of mouth is so very, very powerful." - Jeff Bezos
Lets turn to amazon for a second and look at how they are fostering word of mouth with their company website. First off, amazon knows more about me than my own mother does, that says something. Their marketing strategies are intensely customized to each individual consumer’s experience. My amazon account is filled with products that I am interested in, and that are currently top of mind for me. While amazon is great at customizing each consumer’s experience, they also open the floor to reviews on their website. They will email and ask for a review of a recent purchase and then post it for all to see. These reviews are what foster more (sometimes less) purchases. The consumer reviews and experiences facilitates word of mouth- how powerful is it when a product has a 5 star rating and 400 reviews to back it up? In my opinion, it is extremely powerful.
The bottom line here is that marketing strategies are focused on the internet more so than they have been in the recent past. There are so many opportunities and possibilities to spread word of mouth in the world of web marketing, its hard to ignore it. I got to run, Ryan just tweeted about a free wine tasting ;)
Photo Credit: db Photography | Demi-Brooke via Flickr