Word of mouth marketing (WOMM) is powerful. Regardless of the type of business you are in, it’s guaranteed that you will benefit in some way from this type of marketing. It’s easy, it’s quick, it’s human nature. And, of course, it’s free.
There’s no right or wrong way to execute WOMM; if it works for you (and is ethical…more on that later), then it’s right. But there are ways to maximize this simple, everyday activity to be even more beneficial.
1. Start with Friends
If you’re not an experienced marketer, it can be difficult to sell yourself and your services to anyone, especially people you know. You don’t want to risk irritating them, and of course, there is always the fear that they just won’t get it. But word of mouth is the perfect way to get the ball rolling, partly because you can start with those people who you know and trust. It’s a great way to get yourself out there advocating for yourself with a solid group of supporters behind you.
2. Give a Little First
You should be willing to spread the word about others before you ask for yourself. By supporting your colleagues, clients and friends by pushing their own WOMM campaigns along, you’re telling them you care about them enough to make it known that you support them. They will remember that and be more likely to spread the word about you. And don’t be afraid to call in favors and directly ask others to support you.
3. Go Right to the Influencers
In your professional and social networks, there are people who garner the attention of others without even trying. They are magnetic, respected and heard. These are the people you want supporting you. Having them as your megaphone getting the message to otherwise hard-to-reach people can be invaluable.
4. Generate a Buzz
One of the best ways to generate a buzz is by getting people excited. And the best way to get people excited is by being excited yourself. Don’t be afraid to toot your own horn. Let people know that you have something going on that’s worth getting excited about. Send e-mails, make calls, talk about it on Twitter (and ask for retweets!), and post it to your Facebook profile. Keeping up your own level of excitement will be contagious.
5. Be Honest
While there are many ways to do it, not everything goes in word of mouth marketing. There is an ethics code, created by the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA), that is meant to foster respect and fundamental ethics between marketers and consumers, and is certainly something to keep in mind. Visit WOMMA’s site for more information on the code of ethics and a great guide on word of mouth marketing.
What do you do to get the most out of word of mouth marketing?
Image credit: Sanja Gjenero
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