With game-changing numbers like those, it’s important not to neglect the importance of reviews, ratings, and recommendations when it comes to planning your organization’s marketing strategy.
How do you do that exactly? One of our amazing designers,Marcella Jalbert, and I put together this detailed inforgraphic sharing 7 actionable strategies you can use to implement word-of-mouth marketing into your strategy.
Check out the full infographic below and let me know what strategies you’ve tried in the comments section below!
Long before social media or even the written word, word-of-mouth was our go-to for sharing and learning valuable information. That’s why word-of-mouth (WOM) marketing is one of the oldest, and still, most effective, forms of marketing.
75% of people don’t believe advertisements, but 92% believe brand recommendations from friends.
People are 4x more likely to buy when referred by friends
WOM generates 2x more sales than paid ads
Only 33% of businesses are actively seeking & collecting reviews
Luckily, WOM is easier than ever thanks to the internet!
7 Ways to Implement Word-of-Mouth Marketing in Your Strategy
1. Encourage User-Generated Content (UGC)
UGC is content created and shared by consumers about brands or products. It’s honest, builds trust, and gives marketers extra collateral to work with.
86% of millennials say UGC is a good indicator of the quality of a brand or service.
UGC videos can increase sales effectiveness by 20%
Millennials 5.4 hours a day with content created by their peers
How Can You Get Users to Generate Content?
Have a unique hashtag to identify content created by customers
Incentivize creating and sharing pics, videos, and gifs on social media. Offer a free gift, discount, or feature.
Create a sense of community. Showcase your user-generated content prominently on your website or main profile
79% of people trust testimonials and online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
They help reassure the performance, quality, and/or value of your claims and make consumers feel more comfortable doing business with you. There’s a reason they call it social proof after all.
Testimonials can be written or video and can be hosted on your website or pulled from others. Depending on your industry, some popular review sites include:
Once you have your testimonials or reviews, repurpose them into your marketing:
Dedicated site page
Homepage & landing pages
Relevant product/service pages
Lead generation content
3. Get Product Ratings On Your Site
Depending on your business model, you may want to give people the ability to rate or review specific products, services, etc. directly on your site.
This is especially useful for eCommerce or if you’re a tech company that sells several products.
63% of visitors are more likely to buy when a website has reviews/ratings
Reviews can produce an 18% increase in sales
Customer reviews are 12x more trusted than descriptions from the brand
Brands That Do It Well:
Apple: iTunes/App Store
Popular Rating Tools:
4. Offer an Incentive:
Giving your customers a reason to share with others can skyrocket your word-of-mouth marketing as well.
Big or small, people are always more willing and likely to do something if they receive some sort of value in return. So, consider giving your consumers a discount or free gift in exchange for referrals.
Brands That Do It Well:
Trello: Free Trello Gold
DropBox: Free Storage Space
BlueApron: Credit for BlueApron Products
5. Create a Referral Program
You can take this a step further by creating a formal referral program. A good referral program:
Makes spreading the word easy and quick
Makes it worthwhile for both parties (with an incentive or other benefit)
Measures the results of your campaigns
Top Referral Tools:
6. Connect with Industry Influencers & Thought Leaders
Influencers are exactly what their name suggests; individuals with a strong following and power to influence the beliefs and behavior of those in it.
Because of their already established reputation, word-of-mouth marketing from an influencer is undoubtedly the most valuable.
40% of people say they’ve purchased an item online after seeing it used by an influencer on Instagram, Twitter, Vine, or YouTube.
49% of people say they rely on recommendations from influencers when making purchase decisions.
73% of marketers say that they have allocated budget for influencer marketing.
How to Appeal to Influencers
Quote them in your content
Feature them or their products/services prominently
Let them try your product/services for free
7. Offer a Unique, Shareworthy Experience
At the end of the day, the easiest way to generate word-of-mouth marketing in this digital age is to offer a unique, share-worthy experience.
If you give your consumers something memorable they cannot get anywhere else, they’ll want to share it with their friends and loved ones whether or not you ask them to.
Brands That Do It Well:
Dollar Shave Club
Quick Word-of-Mouth Wins:
Identify and nurture your top customers
Ask for reviews/ratings when things are going well; don’t wait!
Use social media as a referral channel
Go above and beyond with unexpected customer service gestures
Use tools to automate the process
Make sure you have amazing service, staff, and support
Crowdsource feedback to make staff and support improvements