Word Of Mouth Rules!

November 17, 2007 Blog 1 comment

Courtesy of ChurchoftheCustomer.com

Got tipped off about this from Ian McKee at a recent lunch talk, and also found it on one of my favourite marketing blogs Church of the Customer. Apparently, a new study by Nielsen has revealed that Word Of Mouth (WOM) is yet again the number one motivating factor behind customer purchases. This isn’t surprising considering that most of us would much rather trust a friend or family member than an oh-so-slick and smooth advertisement.

What’s especially interesting is this chart below:

Courtesy of ChurchoftheCustomer.com

It shows that the top 5 countries all come from Asia, with Hong Kong at the top of the list. This isn’t really surprising as the emphasis on relationships and kinships amongst Asian societies makes recommendations much more important than a spiel from the company. Of course, this also makes my job as a marketer and publicist that much more difficult!

I wonder where Singapore would rank on the list though. Any idea?

The moral of the story?

1) Focus on creating outstanding product and service experiences that others will talk about. Don’t just create the biggest, loudest and most intelligent ads on the planet!

2) Engage your influencers and opinion shapers closely. Get them to be your evangelists in spreading the word and give them a good reason to do so.

3) Do something extraordinary every once in a while. As Seth Godin would say, create Purple Cows in your business.

4) Don’t ever neglect your after sales service. The purchasing decision doesn’t just stop at the cash register, but goes beyond that to influence the next buying cycle.

5) Listen to what your customers are telling you about your product or service. Invite them for tea and conduct focus group sessions to suss out what they feel.

6) Connect not just to the brain but to the heart. Emotions are the often the strongest motivating factor behind getting people to talk. If they had a wonderful encounter with your business, it is likely that they will talk about it (conversely, if they had a disastrous experience, you can bet your last dollar that the word will carry!).

You can learn more about Word Of Mouth here, here, and here.

By Walter
Founder of Cooler Insights, I am a geek marketer with almost 24 years of senior management experience in marketing, public relations and strategic planning. Since becoming an entrepreneur 5 years ago, my team and I have helped 58 companies and over 2,200 trainees in digital marketing, focusing on content, social media and brand storytelling.

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