Word of mouth is defined as the passing of information from person to person by oral communication. This is important in marketing because it is a key strategy when it comes to growing your reach and influence. Every experienced marketer wants more word-of-mouth marketing, however, it can be difficult to figure out ways to get consumers talking about your product.
In this article, I will give you an example of how one of our clients was able to mobilize 981 employees to talk about their company multiple times a week and the amazing results that followed!
Why is Word of Mouth Important?
Word of mouth is one of the oldest methods of spreading a message to persuade a mass audience.
Over the years, we have seen companies explode through word of mouth. Look at Gmail, Facebook, Starbucks, iPhones, Hubspot, Salesforce and you could probably list off many more.
Because your potential customers are overwhelmed by thousands of marketing messages each day, they would rather use ideas from their trusted network than try to identify and solve problems on their own.
Word of Mouth Influences 59%-91% of All Purchases
“What amazes me most about word of mouth is that it influences 59–91% of all purchases, yet NOBODY has a strategy for it.” – Jay Baer
You have a marketing strategy.
You also have a digital strategy, a social media strategy and a public relations strategy.
But you don’t have a word of mouth strategy??
If most marketers believe in word of mouth then why don’t they have a strategy?
The reason most marketers don’t have a word of mouth strategy is that they don’t believe they can control it (or control it on your current budget.)
At Yip Yip, we’d like to DEBUNK this myth once and for all and share how you can exponentially grow your reach and influence.
You can influence word of mouth, and you can influence it on a budget.
How Can I Drive More Word-of-Mouth Content (Even if I’m on a Budget?)
1) Social Employees
One of the fastest ways you can expand your reach and influence is to roll out a social employee program.
Social Employees are employees that talk about their company online and offline.
When clients have implemented the Yip Yip onboarding process, 50% of employees will consistently talk about their company to their network 3-5 times per week on social media.
One company, in particular, saw a 141% in organic monthly reach (3.5 million views). The results from this campaign were 10x more efficient than paid marketing campaigns.
2) Social Ambassadors or Evangelists
Another popular way to increase word of mouth is to create a Social Ambassador program. This is where you recruit customers or stakeholders to consistently talk about your company on social media.
These ambassadors tend to be a great resource because they do not work for your company, therefore, they are viewed as unbiased.
Your message, when spread through these ambassadors, is viewed as more trustworthy and more relatable, which goes a long way towards getting you more business!
3) Contagious Messages
After you have created multiple sources for word of mouth, you want to make sure that your message goes beyond those individuals.
This is how your message can go from thousands of views to millions!
Jonah Berger has done extensive research on the subject and has written a popular book on the matter called “Contagious: Why Things Catch On”.
Here is a preview of Berger’s six principles of contagious ideas. We recommend studying these principles if you’d like to create a message that will spread.
Principle 1: Social Currency
Think about your product and how it makes people look cool to be talking about it.
Principle 2: Triggers
It is important to remind people to talk about your product.
Principle 3: Emotion
Caring leads to sharing.
Principle 4: Public
Think about how to make your product or idea more public. The more visible your product is, the more likely that people will want to imitate it.
Principle 5: Practical Value
Think about how you can create content that makes your product look useful.
Principle 6: Stories
You may have a message in mind, but how do you put this message into a more compelling narrative? People love sharing stories!
Start doing word of mouth on purpose, instead of on accident.
Imagine the potential if you were able to get 100s or 1000s of people to talk about your company on a daily basis – remember, word of mouth influences 59-91% of purchases.
By getting your team to talk about your company daily, the possibilities for your company’s reach and sales are innumerable.
You don’t have to have a huge marketing budget to generate word of mouth for your company.