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Andy’s Answers: How to create your word of mouth marketing plan

Word of mouth isn’t the result of dumb luck or wacky stunts. It’s a planned, well-executed strategy to earn the respect of your customers and get them talking about you. It’s a methodology for starting good conversations and earning great recommendations.

At our Word of Mouth Supergenius event, I taught a class on how to get your word of mouth program off the ground. A few key takeaways:

  • Start by finding your talkers. Talkers are not necessarily customers. There’s no relationship between talking behavior and buying behavior. You never talk about the restaurant you go to every week, but you tell everyone about a restaurant that you try out for the very first time.
  • Give them something to talk about. Nobody knows for sure what will work. Viral is an adjective. You never know what topic will catch everyone’s attention, but you can test really cheap and really fast. Keep rolling through as many WOM experiments as you can, and then invest when you see a response.
  • Make it easier to talk. This is where the tools come in (note, this is third phase — beware of plans that start with tools). Tool No. 1 is simply asking people to tell a friend, every time and everywhere you can. As for social media and other fancy tools, judge them based on whether or not your talkers use them — your job is to be where they are.

If you like this presentation, check out our upcoming Word of Mouth Supergenius event in New York on July 20.