Word of Mouth Marketing This is the original social media platform. Faberge's famous commercial in which a woman told two friends about her product was a familiar one to me. I remember seeing it again and again. Isn't WOM a powerful way for businesses to influence results?
At a conference, I was able to hear from several experts in
different forms of mobile and social marketing. Suzanne Fanning, President of
WOMMA, Word of Mouth Marketing Association, gave a fascinating, data-based presentation about the power of WOMM, and current efforts to create experiences
that can be passed from one person to another. Below are her thoughts and
examples of how marketers can take advantage of WOMM.
Why Marketers Should
Care About WOMM
Would you rather ignore or abandon what is regarded as the a most effective form of marketing?
You don't have to be a part of the conversation. You must
unleash the power and influence of word-of-mouth if you want to win in 2015
Let's examine the facts. According to Nielsen, 92% of consumers
trust recommendations from family and friends over any form of advertising.
WOMMA and American Marketing Association (AMA), decided to investigate what
brands are doing about this fact. A recent survey found that 64% of marketing
executives believe word-of-mouth marketing is the best form of marketing. Only
6% of marketing executives claim to have mastered the art.
Marketers believe word of mouth is more effective than
advertising, so why don't they spend more time on it?
Problem is, for the past few years marketers have been too
focused on "collecting" rather than "connecting" with their
fans. It is far more effective to have 100 passionate fans who love your brand
and product than 10,000 people who sign up for a chance at winning an iPad.
As in life, if you have friends that you need to buy, are
they truly your friends?
Why should we stop at
likings? Shoot for LOVE.
Marketers used to be focused on the four P's. These four P's
were probably drilled into you as you studied marketing. Marketers now need to
be focused on the three E's, Engage, Equip and Empower. These will help you
become the most talked about and loved product in your niche, ultimately
leading to higher sales. A good WOMM campaign can generate thousands of
recommendations, triple sales and even triple sales within a year.
Could you please
explain the Three E's more clearly?
Engage - Give your fans the gift you are. Engage with them.
Listen to what they have to say. Participate in the conversation about your
brand. Your fans will be in your presence. @NikeSupport shows the value of good
customer service. They respond to all their followers via Twitter about their
apparel, Fuel Band, and other products. You can see them responding to someone
every few minutes.
Equip--Give them a reason to talk. You can have amazing
products, great services, insider knowledge or funny disclosures. It is up to
you. It all depends on your ability to understand your customers and provide
the best service possible. Apple revolutionizes technology and delivers
incredible products to its customers, allowing them naturally to rave about the
new iPhone. Social customer service is another area where Apple excels and
which is on the rise.
Empower - Give consumers multiple ways to communicate and
share. Let them know how important they are to you. Encourage them to find ways
to connect with others in their networks and to find ways to move the
conversation around. Lay's is a great example of how they allowed their fans to
"Do Us a Flavor" and allow customers to create a new potato chip
flavour to go on the shelves. It was one of the most successful marketing
campaigns by Frito-Lay owned PepsiCo.
Why should WOMM be
the focus of attention now, when it has been around for so long?
You're right. You are correct. It is possible that one
caveman shared the information about a popular hunting spot with another
caveman, and eventually the site became the most sought-after hunting area
within their cave community.
It worked back then and it will continue to work today.
Technology has made it possible for consumers to manage your marketing. A
simple post written by a fan in a matter of minutes will be seen and shared by
hundreds of trusted friends. It can quickly travel to thousands more. Millions
have shared well-planned messages in a matter of days. Take a look at the Volvo
Epic Split video featuring Jean-Claude Van Damme.
The video was uploaded to YouTube on November 14th. It was
viewed more than 6.5 million times and shared more than 32 thousand times
within the first 24 hours. In just four weeks, it was shared more than 6
million times on social media. It was quickly voted the most popular YouTube
video. It has been featured in approximately 20,000 online editorial pieces. It
was impossible to achieve these results without technology, no disrespect to
cave people. It is also worth noting that the people who read this post could
have millions of conversations offline with their friends, family,
acquaintances, or consumers perplexed by the displays in stores.
Your brand will benefit greatly from engaging people and
Is there a consistent
characteristic that successful WOMM campaigns have?
Remember that a solid WOMM strategy should be credible,
social, repeatable and measurable. Dishonesty is not acceptable.
Are there any case
studies that you could share?
These three WOMMY winners are a testament to the power of
Marina Maher Communications won a WOMMY for their Kimberly-Clark
campaign in the Influencer category. The Great American Try On was created by
the Depend team to bring the issue out of the toilet and into the most public
places. They recruited celebrities and footballers to try it on and tell
America what they thought. Then, they asked them to donate to two charitable
causes. Sample requests for new products launched a year ago saw 720% more
sampling requests than the previous year.