Word-of-mouth advertising is crucial for every business (either big or small company), as one happy customer can steer dozens of new ones your way. Then imagine having ten happy customers each day. Word of mouth advertising is one of the most credible forms of advertising because a person puts their reputation on the line every time they make a recommendation and that person has nothing to gain but the appreciation of those who are listening. What are you doing to make sure your potential ambassadors feel confident enough in your business to recommend it? What are you doing to trigger word-of-mouth?
Here are fifteen tactics you can adopt to drive word of mouth marketing for your business.
Hire the right set of people for your business. Nothing hurts people’s opinions of you more than dealing with employees who act like they don’t want to be there. Hire people who take customer service seriously. Make sure they value a job well done even though they don’t own the business.
Thank people who refer business to you. How you thank them will depend on the nature of your business. The thanks may be in the form of a hand-written thank you card, a coupon, a cash reward, or whatever is practical, expected, and ethical for your line of business. Thanking those who help you will make them feel their efforts are appreciated, which will make them be glad to recommend you to more people.
Thank your customers for their business. Everyone likes to be appreciated, and customers are no exception. While you may have the words printed on receipts or included in email confirmations of sales, or you or your staff may say "Thank you" in person, doing something such as sending a handwritten thank you card to new customers or a returning customer will set you apart as a business owner who cares about their customers and is worth recommending.
Refer business to noncompeting businesses. When you refer customers, patients or clients to others, those businesses are more likely to refer business to you.
Get PR to promote your business. Public relations should be ongoing to keep your business in the public eye. Develop relationship with local journalist, members of the media and bloggers, and keep them informed about your company’s latest news, accomplishment and future plans.
Add social share buttons to your website and email messages. The easier you make it for customers and prospects to share your information and promotions, the more likely it is they will do so.
Tap into your personal connections. Spread the word about your business among your friend and family. Taking out an advert in the church bulletin or asking your gym if you can leave brochures at the front desk could lead to new business.
Hand out extra business cards. Whenever you do business with a new client and know they’re satisfied, give them extra business cards so they can pass them out to friends, colleagues or family members who might need your business services.
Give away samples. Nothing does more to convince new people of the value of what you do than actually letting them try your product. If you own a business that creates products, give away samples at your doorstep and if you have a service oriented business, offer a free consultation.
Build a mailing list and use it to offer advanced notice of specials. When customers make purchases, ask them to provide their phone numbers or email addresses so you can contact them with advance notice of specials and discounts. If the deals are good enough, your customers are sure to pass them on to their friends and families.
Turn verbal praise into written testimonials. When a customer praises you for something special that you have done, ask them if you can write down the comment and use it in your marketing or on your website. More than likely, the customer will be flattered that you want to use the comment and glad to help promote your business.
Be personally visible to your market. Join networking groups and industry groups that your customers join and be a regular attendee at meetings and events. Talk to people at meetings to find out what they do and what’s important to them and what challenges they face. When you can, give them tips or point them to resources they need, even though it has nothing to do with your business. Your goal is to be thought of as a friend and problem-solver - not just a salesperson.
Pay special attention to unhappy customer. Unhappy customers will tell more people about their experience than happy customers, unhappy customers can do more harm than happy customer do good. So try and resolve every angry customer’s complaint and turn them into a fan of your business. Never ignore any customer’s complaint; go out of your way to find a solution and offer quality service that will win them over.
Always ask new customers how they first heard about you. Try to get as specific as possible. If they learned about you from a friend at a particular place, try getting the exact place. Tracking how customers learn about your company will help you assess how well your word-of-mouth marketing efforts are working so you can focus on the most productive avenues.
Always treat your customers well. This is like the most important step you can take to generate good word-of-mouth comments and to build your business overall, the best way to grow your word of mouth is to do great work, if your work is great the message will spread.
If you are thinking of advertising in Nigeria, please contact PoiseMedia Communications at www.poisemedianigeria.com or check our contact at the bottom of this blog. We can help you identify your market and reach them. We apply both BTL and ATL strategies to project our clients’ brands to the right audience. We can do same for you at very affordable price.
Business Development Officer
PoiseMedia Communications Ltd