Article by Richard Houwing, Business Advisor, Western Sydney Business Centre
The Most Effective Marketing Tool
Consumers are overwhelmed by thousands of messages a day, yet they are desperate for guidance in making purchasing decisions. Hence, a staggering 92 percent of people rely on their family, friends, and workmates to help them make a major purchase. Some businesses see word-of-mouth as something they cannot influence. So, they ignore it. Here are some ideas to get people talking about your business.
Create a dramatic marketing piece
Nothing gets people talking better than the WOW factor. Producing a brilliant marketing piece is easier today than ever before by using great design, good copy and creativity in how it is delivered. Think multi-channel for maximum impact.
Deliver an Incredible Customer Experience
Every day, your customers are treated as a number and not a person. They’re desperate to find a business experience that stands out! You can deliver this by making the customer experience fundamental to your business. A great product or service is essential, but combined with a great experience – that gets people talking.
Use Incentives to Increase the Chatter
More customers will tell their network about you if you ask. However, if you really want to get your word of mouth going, offer an incentive to spread the word. An incentive shows customers just how much you appreciate their recommendation. By offering more than just your gratitude, you prepare the soil for your word-of-mouth marketing to grow wild. What you choose for your incentive is only limited by your imagination. Some of the more popular ideas are:
- Discounts on future business (for the advocate, new referral, or both),
- Exclusive access to upgrades or new products,
- Gift cards (even if they aren’t for your business),
- Collateral (t-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, USB drives, etc.).
These ideas require your time, money, or both. But they are some of the best investments you can make because of the incredible power of word-of-mouth marketing. Remember, the people who receive the referrals are much more likely to buy because they already know and trust their referral source.