How to Build a Word-of-mouth Marketing Strategy

Originally published: February 06, 2022 11:42:13 AM, updated: November 19, 2022 12:00:00 AM

How to Build a Word-of-mouth Marketing Strategy

Positive word-of-mouth has immense power in growing your business. So, they are your most valuable marketing assets. They can help you beat the competition and stand out from the crowd. And despite the common perception that recommendations and discussions happen organically or inadvertently, these are driven by a well-defined word-of-mouth marketing strategy.

A clear-cut word-of-mouth marketing strategy will help generate a consistent flow of customer conversations that bring in conversions, sales, and revenue. This blog tells you how to do it, but first things first.

What is word-of-mouth marketing?

Word-of-mouth marketing is a marketing technique where a brand drives its promotion via customer experiences and stories. Some examples are product ratings, reviews, and recommendations. Though they usually occur naturally or organically, today brands take efforts to prompt customers to do them. That’s why it’s referred to as a form of marketing.

Why is word-of-mouth marketing important?

Look at the following Word of mouth marketing statistics to understand its relevance.

  • B2B organizations with referrals encounter a 70% higher conversion rate.
  • Referred customers’ lifetime value is 16% more than non-referred customers.
  • Referral leads own a 30% higher conversion rate than leads from any other channel.
  • Referrals account for around 65% of new deals of the company.
  • As per referral marketing stats, only 33% of customers consider online advertisements.
  • 59% of US customers believe offline references, while 49% think online word-of-mouth is highly convincing.
  • Customers believe their friends’ recommendations seven times more than traditional advertising.

How to build a word-of-mouth marketing strategy: 7 techniques to follow

Any business or brand can benefit from word-of-mouth marketing. So, irrespective of your niche, here are seven actionable tactics you can follow to encourage more word-of-mouth promotions from your customers.

1. Provide a share-worthy experience

Share Worthy Experience

Source: InviteReferrals

Word of mouth works the best and creates a rippling effect only when it is authentic. So, offer high-quality products. This will ensure that your customers are happy with you. And satisfied customers readily share their experience with your brand in their circle. So, invest in the best products.

When a brand provides impeccable customer service, prospects turn into customers and become loyal customers who advocate on its behalf. Besides, ensure that your customer service department offers its best. Conduct sessions to educate your staff on the importance of providing excellent customer service and train them on rendering it.

2. Have a referral program in place

Referral Program

Source: InviteReferrals

Though happy customers will spread your brand to their friends and folks out of their own will, you should have a formal referral program in place. This will motivate them to take efforts and increase the success of your word-of-mouth marketing campaigns. A good referral program will be:

  • Easy and quick to share.
  • Provide pre-written, editable messages for them to share.
  • Providing benefits to both parties.
  • Facilitating the measurement of campaign results.

3. Incentivize

Incentivize

Source: InviteReferrals

Rewarding your customers for spreading your brand can give them a good reason to do it. So, give your referrers a big or small incentive that they’ll value. Your incentives can take different forms such as:

  • Cash
  • Credit points
  • Discounts
  • Free premium features
  • Gifts
  • Supplementary services
  • Exclusive experiences

There are two types of incentivizing under referral programs: two-sided incentivizing (both the referrer and the referred are rewarded) and one-sided incentivizing (only the referrer is rewarded). If you can afford it, go for the former.

Further, a phased incentivizing system would be better to reward them for different efforts like referring a friend, posting product links on social media, sharing user-generated content, etc.

4. Ask for reviews

Ask for Reviews

Another successful word-of-mouth strategy that you should employ is getting customer reviews. Once your product has been shipped to your customer, ask him to review and rate it. Use software to automate the collection of product reviews on your brand.

Positive reviews and ratings influence other shoppers to buy the product. Statistics say that the average customer reads some 4 to 6 reviews before making a purchasing decision. Even if there are some negative reviews, don’t worry. For, they imply that your reviews are from real customers. However, take the following measures to deal with negative reviews:

  • Respond Promptly
  • Admit your mistakes
  • Correct inaccuracies
  • Provide replacement if it’s warranted
  • Take it offline

5. Partner with influencers

Individuals with a large following and power to influence the behavior and beliefs of those in it are referred to as influencers. 49% of people say they take recommendations from influencers into account while making buying decisions. Partnering up with influencers in your niche can give you a lot of word-of-mouth exposure.

40% of people claim to have bought an item online after seeing it being used by an influencer on social media.

So, go for influencer marketing. Pick a few influencers in your niche and write to them, asking them to partner with your brand. And take efforts to get the most out of your influencer marketing! You can request them for the favor in exchange for monetary benefits, your free products, a social cause, or something else.

Recommended video: How to do Influencer Marketing to Grow Your Business (Complete Guide)

6. Track social media mentions

Social Media

Social media has given a platform for consumers to take their opinions, appreciations, and concerns about brands online. This can be both a boon and a curse for brands. For, when their name is mentioned favorably, they’ll gain immense popularity, converting into sales and revenue. But if they’re there for the wrong reasons, their name will be spoiled significantly.

This is why social media mentions have to be addressed quickly. If yours is a large firm that gets a lot of mentions, use software to track them. This will help you prioritize conversations and respond to those as soon as possible to keep conversations rolling. Here are certain things you should do to keep your reputation high while generating word-of-mouth.

  • Respond ASAP to all customer comments, queries, and concerns.
  • Handle negative comments and tough situations with care.
  • Keep track of your interaction history to build better customer relationships.

7. Target your loyal customers

You should target your loyal customers the most to get them to share your brand, its products, and services. For, they have a strong reason why they continue purchasing from you. They trust your brand and its offerings and are most likely to share it in their circle.

Studies say that customers who feel appreciated tend to stick with a brand. So, interact with them in a personalized manner to ask them to advocate on your behalf. This will also appear as a way to acknowledge them for their loyalty. But those who perceive indifference from a brand’s end tend to leave it.

Conclusion

Consumers today trust word-of-mouth much more than advertisements and promotions from brands. This is because of its authentic nature. So, businesses should give top priority to it. They should have a solid word-of-mouth marketing strategy in place to reap its benefits.

This blog has discussed seven techniques that an effective word-of-mouth marketing strategy should incorporate. So, employ these to get your customers to rave about your brand.

Shivani Goyal

Author Bio: Shivani is a content writer at InviteReferrals, which provides referral software that allows businesses to attract new customers from existing customers through referral campaigns.

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