Word of mouth marketing has been around forever. In fact, it’s probably the oldest way of spreading the word about a new business – by getting your happy customers to talk about you within their own network. So it shouldn’t be surprising that leveraging your customers’ digital reach can help grow your brand.
Most businesses do this organically: they provide an experience, and if their customers are happy, they talk about it with their friends. The problem with this is that it’s sporadic at best. There’s no consistent message being put out the world. So while it’s a positive type of marketing that actually sparks a huge conversion rate, it’s also highly unreliable for forecasting growth.
So how can you leverage a word-of-mouth marketing campaign for real, consistent growth? Below are four distinct campaigns you can leverage to do just that.
Make the Ask
The biggest mistakes most companies make is not ASKING their customers for a referral. Oftentimes, consumers don’t make that authentic referral unless it’s front of mind – so why not put it out there for them?
You can do this in a multitude of ways, from including a note in your email signature to keeping a nice sign at your front counter, to just asking your customers to share your brand with friends that might find value in what you provide. You’ll be surprised at the number of people who start sending new customers your way when you just ask them to share their experience with their network.
Host a Contest
Sometimes, you’ve gotta give a little to get a little. And hosting a contest can be a great way to drive traffic in the live or digital space. The best way to do this is enter customers into a drawing for each referral they send your way, leaving a positive review on social media, or tagging their friends in a social media post. This gets your brand in front of a large audience with a very minimal investment – it’s a highly effective tool for consistent growth.
Get out in the Community
If your business is locally driven, participating in local events can be a great way to spread the word. Look for events that your core target audience will attend. That could be local festivals and fairs, the Chamber of Commerce or even through networking groups. Keeping your brand front-of-mind often requires just being seen on a regular basis by your prospects.
Influence on a digital level is an amazing way to start spreading the word in a more intentional fashion. Not only do you get more control over the experience being shared and the message that’s pushed out, you can coordinate a big burst of word-of-mouth marketing at once. This leads to higher rates of brand recognition and trust, because your prospects see your brand from multiple points in their network, helping them to make the connection between your brand and what they need faster.
To do this well, you need to find the right level of influence to partner with. If you have a brand with a national reach, then you need a wider campaign. For brands with more local customers, you need to start looking in your own backyard. Then craft a message for them to share, show them the experience they’ll have with your brand, and ask them to share that experience with their own network. Partnering this type of digital word-of-mouth campaign with a contest can even amplify your reach further.
What to do Next
We frequently work with our clients to drive these types of intentional word-of-mouth campaigns on a strategic level (read: in a way that integrates with the rest of their marketing plan). Want your own strategy? Let’s chat! Schedule a quick consult with our President and Founder below – we’d love to talk more about how a stronger strategy can contribute to better ROI!