Four Ways to Encourage Word of Mouth

By Natasha | February 25, 2008

In a post at MarketingProfs’ Daily Fix blog, Andy Sernovitz discusses some takeaways from a recent experience in which he told an office manager that the $239 Dell monitor he purchased for his PC would work with her Mac. “She said she had been saving up for a monitor from Apple for three times the price,” he writes, “but she was going to check out the Dell instead.”

Use conversation starters. Sernovitz realized the Dell monitor was Apple-compatible because the cable was included as an accessory. This extra is the conversation starter; while most Dell customers have no use for it, their Mac-loyal friends might want to know about a cost-effective alternative. “The resulting word of mouth pays for the extra cost,” he says. “What can you put in the box to start a conversation?”

Use good names. Ditch memory-defying alphanumeric product names for more catchy alternatives. Are you more likely to tell a friend about the SP2208WFP or the Fred 22?

Use simple URLs. Use a URL that’s simple to remember and pass along—for instance, dell.com/fred.

Use referral landing pages. Let customer evangelists create a page like dell.com/sernovitz with favorite purchases and wish lists. “It’s easy to do,” he says, “and it makes me look great when I tell people about it. Give me points when my friends visit. Give referrers status and recognition.”

“Great word of mouth is more than buzz,” says Sernovitz. “It’s nailing the simple tactics that help the conversation spread.”

Source: MarketingProfs. Click here for the post.

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What pizza?

By Natasha | January 18, 2008

Trying to sell pizza, trying to promote a school, trying to sell shoes, toys or even a house?Pizza

You wouldn’t try to sell a house without displaying the house in your advertising or brochure.  The same goes for trying to sell a school to parents.  How do you stir the emotions of your prospective parents if you don’t feature the students, ‘the life of the school’ and the purpose for its being.

I recently received a brochure in the mail for a new pizza shop that had just opened down the road.  The brochure was brightly coloured in sunny yellow and sky blue.  It had all the relevant information, types of pizzas with creatively themed romatic names, but something was lacking.  Can you guess what it was?

Yes, not one picture, icon or glimpse of pizza or pasta being sold.

How can you possibly tempt, attract or appeal to your target market if you don’t give them a reason, a mouth watering experience to seek you out? Display images of who you are, what you sell and what you stand for. You will grab the attention of your target more effectively than just words.

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Are You Ready to Rock?

By Natasha | January 9, 2008

Rock stars are, in actuality, fantastic marketers. According to Mack Collier, in a recent post at The Viral Garden, “Musicians do such an amazing job of exciting the people that buy their music, and turning them into fans.” If your company has an inner Gwen Stefani just begging to break out, here are a couple steps Collier suggests you can take:

Think of your customers as a community to which you belong. Tori Amos fills front rows and interacts with her fans throughout her energetic performances. She makes it clear she’s one of them. In the business world, Collier points to Willie Davidson of Harley-Davidson, who conducts in-the-trenches market research by hitting the open road with enthusiasts. “Since the company is participating in the customers’ community,” writes Collier, “they better understand their customers, and as a result market to them more effectively.”

Align your perceptions of a product or service with those of your customers. Rock stars see themselves as cool—and so do their fans, who become cool by association. When the iPhone launched, there were long lines at Apple stores although the item was easily obtained at any (less fashionable) Cingular/AT&T store. As Collier explains, “But it was ‘cool’ to stand in line to wait for an iPhone at the Apple store. Apple thinks the iPhone is cool, and Apple’s customers agree.”

The Po!nt: “Marketing doesn’t have to be viewed as just a necessary business function, but instead could be seen as a way to excite your customers into becoming fans,” writes Collier. “Besides, don’t we all really want to be rock stars?”

Source: Get To The Point by Marketing Profs, The Viral Garden. Read the entire post here.

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The Art of Referrals

By Natasha | November 16, 2007

For many of us referrals are an important part of our business. But what warrants a referral and how do you get your clients to give them. The key to referrals is to exceed client’ expectations…. but you must let them know you have done so!

Often in our business dealings we supply a product or service with a little extra. For example, Mary has an IT company that supplies computers to small businesses. She could simply supply a desktop computer to a client, but as part of her service to the client she reloads existing files into the new system and sets applications according to the specifications of the client. The level of service provided by Mary is substantially more than simply providing a computer from shop to door. However, the client is none the wiser of the added service and sees this as the norm for the service provided. The norm in fact is usually at a much lower level.

When we do something exceptional, say at that higher level, we need to remind our clients that it is above and beyond the call of duty.

In reminding our clients of the extra work or the extra service we have provided it not only exceeds their expectations it will highlight to them the benefits of working with you. Being an exceptional supplier of service will prompt them to think of you when referring you to colleagues and associates. But it is not that simple. You need to remind your clients that you are the referable. Here are a couple of ways you can remind them:

Once your client refers you to another, ensure you reward your referrer with a gift. What to give your referrer very much depends on that person. Building a relationship with this person and understanding what they treasure will allow you to select a personalised small gift of appreciation. But with any gift make certain that you write and reinforce the reminder.

After starting a relationship with a colleague of a referred client ensure that you stay in touch with the referrer. Let them know how things turned out. Now I’m not talking about the work you are doing for the new client, the referrer is more likely to be concerned about the relationship that is building. By staying in touch it gives you another chance to remind your referrer of how good you are and to encourage more referrals.

The path to referrals is a two-way street. And the best most considerate way of showing your appreciation is to refer someone back to your referrer. Take note though, it is really important to find out who is worth referring to your clients simply by asking them “how would I know someone was the person you want referred to you?”

If referrals are the lifeblood of your organisation, what are you doing to encourage more referrals?

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The Art of Referrals

By Natasha | November 16, 2007

For many of us referrals are an important part of our business. But what warrants a referral and how do you get your clients to give them. The key to referrals is to exceed client’ expectations…. but you must let them know you have done so!

Often in our business dealings we supply a product or service with a little extra. For example, Mary has an IT company that supplies computers to small businesses. She could simply supply a desktop computer to a client, but as part of her service to the client she reloads existing files into the new system and sets applications according to the specifications of the client. The level of service provided by Mary is substantially more than simply providing a computer from shop to door. However, the client is none the wiser of the added service and sees this as the norm for the service provided. The norm in fact is usually at a much lower level.

When we do something exceptional, say at that higher level, we need to remind our clients that it is above and beyond the call of duty.

Read the full article - The Art of Referrals

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