According to the latest post on Church of the Customer, the most important platform for consumers to talk about brands isn’t on Facebook, Google +, Twitter or even SMS! Rather, it is good old person-to-person communication in the flesh (well at least in the US).
As I trawl through my RSS feeds this week, the following posts caught my eye.
The first is this fascinating titbit in Branding Strategy Insider which noted how Chinese adopting Western names are using more unique monikers to make themselves stand out from the usual Toms, Dicks and Sallys. They include a young lady who calls herself Vanilla Wang, an artist working on wood-block prints who is renamed Colour Zhao, and a Beijing video editor called Thunder Wang. The rationale behind this is to give greater significance to their names and to also make themselves more easily remembered from the seas of Johns and Janes – a legacy of the traditional Chinese emphasis of according meanings to names.
There is something which I always suspected about offline versus online Word Of Mouth (WOM) marketing. And that is that nothing beats the real thing.
While reading my favourite blog about WOM, which is the Church of the Customer, I came across these interesting statistics through its links. They hail from the US, the world’s most wired nation:
“Around 3.5 billion word of mouth conversations take place in the U.S. on a daily basis, of which just 7% take place online via instant/test messaging, chat rooms, email and blogs. The remainder take place offline either face to face (75%) or on the telephone (17%).”
Apparently, what happened was that the FMCG behemoth fitted out an entire toilet and a lot more as part of the their efforts in promoting Charmin toilet paper. There are even two strengths available – Extra Strong and Extra Soft – depending on your inclination and err….vigour. What’s neat is that ancilliary brands like tissues, scented wipes, and serviettes were also promoted along with the necessary waste disposal expendable item. Check out the Youtube video on this here:
Now, if only we can create an entire bathroom completely decked out with the toiletry products of leading brands inside for a completely brand immersive experience? Of course, the experience must be great in order to generate positive rather than negative Word Of Mouth.
Here’s yet another gem from Church of the Customer’s Jackie Huba on writing “Thank You” notes that rock! If you want to build a word-of-mouth focused and buzzworthy business, here is the way to go. I would probably add another point which is to handwrite the note – if you can help it!
Spell the recipient’s name correctly (doh!).
Thank the person for choosing your business. If they shared a specific reason why they choose your business of why they like it, reaffirm it. For heaven’s sake, though, don’t turn it into a sales pitch.
Include a personal detail about the recipient that you picked up on. Prove that you were listening. Humanity is a good thing in the antiseptic world of business.
Open the door to feedback. Whether the recipient provides it isn’t the point; it’s the idea that you’re passionate about creating a recommendable experience.
Be authentic: Include your full name and contact info — email and/or phone. Or a business card.
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:
Came across this fabulous titbit from one of my favourite blogs Church of the Customer. I don’t think there is a better way to market one’s products or services, do you? If only, we can do that on supermarket aisles and also include customer testimonials into the whole proposition.