In the last post, we started our series on word of mouth and talked about making your customers purchasing experience a short, easy one. We are going to continue with that theme a bit today. We will talk about the power of word of mouth and how to mold it to your advantage.
The reality is everyone needs an advisor to guide them to make a decision. We rely on the expertise of others to make the right decisions as they are explained to us. When you take the time to understand exactly what and how word of mouth works, you’ll see all the great advantages it has to offer you. Remember this path when working to understand word of mouth:
- Accelerate the decision-making process for increased profits.
- You can accelerate product-making decisions by making the process easier. For example, try delivering on your word-of-mouth promises instead of low-ball advertising and the used car salesman approach.
Traditional advertising draws about one response for every thousand ads, and most of those are to ask for more information before the customer even considers purchasing. When you get information from a friend, you are more likely to take their word for it and act. On average, customers purchase two out of every five recommendations their friends make. That’s a HUGE difference.
So, what exactly is word of mouth? We know how powerful it can be, but to define it: Word of mouth is a communication between a customer and a potential customer. There is usually a relationship of some kind between these two people with an established level of trust.
Now, compare this to advertising where you are providing a message to a potential customer who has not established a relationship with you or level of trust. Who are they more likely to take advice from? The answer is clear!
We talked above about the benefits of word of mouth now; let’s take a look at some reasons why it works. Some of these are:
- The information is custom-tailored to the potential customer because of the friendly relationship of the referrer.
- It’s more personal, relevant, and believable.
- It’s customer-driven.
- It’s self-generating and can take on a life of its own, especially with the information age of the Internet.
- It becomes part of the product’s description.
- The source of word of mouth can be meaningful and more effective when coming from an expert.
- Word of mouth saves you time and money.
To fully utilize word of mouth, you need to understand:
- Where is your word of mouth coming from?
- What products or services are being affected by word of mouth?
- How is your word of mouth traveling?
Once you know these things, you can work out a plan to trigger more word of mouth. This wraps up this lesson on word of mouth. If you need help understanding word of mouth and how it can impact your business, try our FREE test drive to access our wealth of resources and tools.
Next time we’re going to dive into the nine levels of word of mouth. These levels help you understand which word of mouth is positive and which is not.