A good word of mouth marketing strategy has always been incredibly effective. It occurs when customers spread positive information about their experience with the company on their behalf. For example, if a customer recommends a product to a friend, that’s a form of word of mouth communication. The reason it’s so effective as a marketing strategy is that people tend to trust the word of other customers over that of a company. As a result, customers can help to build your reputation, increase brand awareness, and even generate leads for you by way of word of mouth.
While some word of mouth marketing is organic, you should encourage it as much as possible. This is especially true in this day and age when word of mouth can spread like wildfire online. With that in mind, the following are six tips to help you implement a successful digital word of mouth marketing strategy:
1. Encourage Customer Reviews
Due to how easy it is to find information online, the majority of customers will research a company before making a purchase. Part of this research entails reading through customer reviews left online. Customers can leave reviews on social media channels, on Google, and on a variety of third party websites that are review focused (such as Yelp or Angie’s List, to name a couple). The more positive reviews you have across platforms, the better your word of mouth will be. As such, encourage customers to leave reviews, not just of their customer experience with your company, but also for the individual products or services that they purchased.
2. Create Customer Testimonials
Testimonials are similar to reviews but tend to go more in-depth. Customers who are particularly happy with the customer experience are more willing to provide a testimonial. This can be done in the written form or in the form of a video. Video testimonials are particularly effective because people will have an easier time connecting to the customer giving the testimonial on an emotional level. Not to mention that it’s much easier to trust a video testimonial than a written one.
3. Connect With Influencers Online
Influencers are a little different than the traditional consumer. An influencer is someone who often has hundreds of thousands of followers on social media. They are considered an authority and are highly trusted, which means that if they promote a certain company’s product, their followers pay attention. Basically, they can help spread a positive word of mouth using a digital loudspeaker. You should look to connect with both macro and micro-influencers, both of which can help improve brand awareness and help spread your message.
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4. Encourage Customer Referrals
Although many customer referrals happen organically, you should encourage them as much as possible. Individual referrals are often incredibly effective. Leads that are referred to you by an existing customer are going to be much easier for you to close since they will already be further down the sales funnel. There are several ways that you can encourage customer referrals. The first way is by simply offering an incentive. Provide customers with a link that they can use to refer another customer (such as a link leading to a service they can sign up for). If someone signs up to your service using that link, you can provide the customer with a discount or free gift as a reward.
Another way to encourage customer referrals is to set up a referral program. This is a more official way to incentivize your existing customers to make referrals. A referral program will make it much easier for customers to make referrals. It will also make it easier for you to monitor your customer referrals and to measure their success.
5. Encourage And Leverage User-Generated Content
User-generated content is content showcasing your brand or products created by your customers. This type of content helps to build trust and showcases the positive aspects of your brand or products. Not to mention that people tend to engage more successfully with user-generated content. All of these elements make user-generated content an effective vehicle for spreading word of mouth. You can encourage user-generated content by simply requesting it on social media or by holding contests. For example, a contest on Instagram for the best picture showcasing how customers used your product.
6. Provide The Best Customer Experience Possible
In the end, none of these digital word of mouth tactics are going to be very effective if you’re not providing a good customer experience in the first place. Customers don’t want to help brands that gave them a poor experience, after all. With that in mind, focus on providing the best customer experience you can and you’ll find that a positive word of mouth will begin to spread organically.
Word of mouth marketing can be a powerful way to increase brand awareness and to generate more leads. Not to mention that a word of mouth marketing strategy is an incredibly cost-effective strategy. Consider using these six tactics to encourage the spread of a positive word of mouth online.