November 26, 2014

The Power of Word Of Mouth Marketing

Do you want to tap into a powerful form of marketing that doesn’t require you to create content on your own? If so, word of mouth marketing is the strategy for you. In this post, we’re going to look at what word of mouth marketing is, why it works, and how you can utilize it as a part of your brand’s marketing strategy.

What is Word of Mouth Marketing?

Word of mouth marketing is simply the marketing done by your brand’s loyal fans and customers. When people love your brand, they’re going to tell others about it. Word of mouth marketing happens both offline and online. It’s difficult to capitalize on offline word of mouth marketing, such as when someone has a great experience with a brand and then tells a friend or family member about it when they are out to dinner.

Online word of mouth marketing, however, can be monitored in many cases. There are different ways people can spread the word about your brand online, such as by tweeting about a great experience, sharing it with their Facebook connections, or posting photos of your brand’s products on Instagram or Pinterest.

We’ll get back to how you can find and utilize publicly accessible word of mouth marketing content in a moment. In the meantime, let’s look at some statistics.

Word of Mouth Marketing Statistics

The following are statistics that should help you see just how powerful word of mouth marketing can be for your brand. First, we’ll start with statistics from the 29,000 online consumers polled in the Nielsen’s Global New Product Survey.

  • 59% of consumers like to tell others about new products.

This means that over half of your customers would be willing to spread the word about your products!

  • People are much more likely to purchase a product when they learn about it from friends and family (77%), professional experts (66%), their job or workplace (55%), and at public events (41%).

This proves that recommendations from friends and family are always the most powerful. Friends and family word of mouth marketing also trumps people most likely to buy a product when they see it in a store (72%) or when they find it using search (67%).

Next, you have this great statistic from a study by Market Force.

  • 81% of consumers’ buying decisions are influenced by their friends’ social media posts compared to 78% influenced by vendors’ social media posts.

Although the percentage is close, it still shows that people tend to favor opinions from their friends over what your brand has to say about products. This is why user generated content is increasingly popular – people don’t want to hear what you have to say about your products, but what others who have used your products have to say.

While it’s not a statistic, a study by Jack Morton Worldwide echoes the above sentiments.

  • People are the most powerful ad medium. When asked “What makes you aware of the products and services you buy?” and “What channels have the most value in your decision-making?” consumers pointed to people in their lives who act as resources for information and advocacy.

This study noted that the above was true for large purchases and small, and applied to all age and gender demographics.

Want more statistics? How about these from Deloitte?

  • Consumers mention 56 brands in conversation a week.

People love talking about the brands they love. In addition to driving new customers to a brand, word of mouth marketing also has the following added benefit.

  • Customers referred by loyal customers have a 37% higher retention rate.

This means that you won’t just get new customers through word of mouth marketing, but you’ll have a better chance of keeping them. Customer retention is extremely important considering that it’s six to seven times more difficult to gain a new customer than retain an existing one according to the White House Office of Consumer Affairs. So instead of having to constantly fight for new customers, word of mouth marketing will bring you more loyal customers.

The best thing you might learn about word of mouth marketing today is the following from The Keller Fay Group.

  • Positive experiences (75%) are more likely to generate word of mouth than negative experiences (25%).

It may feel like all you hear about is negative experiences, but the truth is, people would rather share positive ones. Hence, positive word of mouth marketing might be an effective way to fight public criticism. While a potential customer may see negative reviews of your brand elsewhere, seeing positive word of mouth mentions by others may overshadow those negative reviews. Especially if the positive mentions are more recent and steadily flowing in compared to the negative ones.

Now that you know how powerful word of mouth marketing can be, let’s talk about how you can harness that power.

How to Utilize Word of Mouth Marketing

When someone shares a public mention and recommendation of your brand online, you automatically get the above results. But by sharing that recommendation from a brand advocate with your audience, you get to multiply those results by demonstrating to potential customers just how much your current ones love your products.

This is where Shuttlerock can help. You can use it to collect great photo and video mentions of your brand’s products from throughout the web and curate them on your website and social media channels.

Instead of having to create content where you’re telling people how great your own products are, you can use content your customers create to tell the story for you. For brands struggling to get testimonials, this can be an alternative to showcasing your ability to satisfy customers.

Best of all, you can incentivize your customers to continue sharing their positive mentions with contests and other incentives. This can make the difference between positive word of mouth marketing content reaching 100 potential customers to reaching 1,000 potential customers instead.

Ready to take advantage of word of mouth marketing? Be sure to see how Shuttlerock works and request your demo today!

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