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#6.02: The “Everything You Need To Know About Word of Mouth Marketing, Part 1” Issue

It all comes down to this: Happy customers are your best advertisers. If people like you and like what you do, they will tell their friends.

1> Lesson 1: The Definition Of Word Of Mouth Marketing
2> Lesson 2: The Four Rules of Word of Mouth
3> Example: Drury Inn’s Great Word of Mouth

Lessons 3 and 4 will published next week. In the meantime, go buy a copy of Andy’s new book: “Word of Mouth Marketing: How Smart Companies Get People Talking.”

1> Lesson 1: The Definition Of Word Of Mouth Marketing

Word of Mouth Marketing is a) giving people a reason to talk about you and b) making it easier for the conversation to take place.

It’s C to C Marketing — when a consumer tells a consumer about you. Actually, it’s B to C to C. When it comes out of the mouth of a marketer, it’s marketing. When a real person repeats it, it’s word of mouth.

It’s more than just marketing — it’s also product design and customer service. People talk about fantastic stuff and great treatment from companies they like.

2> Lesson 2: The Four Rules of Word of Mouth

Rule #1: Be Interesting

Nobody talks about boring companies, boring products, boring ads. Everyone can be interesting. Before you run an ad, before you launch a product, ask your spouse about it. Trust me … if he or she finds it interesting, you’ve got a winner.

Rule #2: Make People Happy

Create amazing products. Provide excellent service. Go the extra mile. Make sure the work you do gets people energized, excited, and eager to tell a friend.

Rule #3: Earn Trust And Respect

Nobody talks about a company that they don’t trust or don’t like. Earn the respect of your customers. Be good to them. Talk to them. Honor their intelligence. Fulfill their needs. Stay honest. Every company can be nicer, and every one of us can work to make our company a little better to its customers.

Rule #4: Make It Easy

Find a simple topic that is easy to repeat. Not your formal brand statement, not your product description. Forget elevator pitch…it’s the pass-in-the-hall test. What can people tell a friend about you in one sentence? Then do everything you can to make it easy to share that topic. Use tell-a-friend forms on your web site. Put it in an email. Pass out flyers. Blog it. Stick it on a t-shirt.

3> Example: Drury Hotels’ Great Word of Mouth

The first thing you do when you check into most hotels is call someone (on your cell) and complain about the cost of the phone calls. Drury Inn turns this into a great word of mouth opportunity … by giving every guest an hour of free long distance, every night.

Think about how fantastic this is. Guests pick up the phone and say “Can you believe it? Drury Inn gives me free phone calls.” Even better, they call friends and advertise Drury even if they have nothing else to say.

Drury has given people a reason to talk, and made it easier for the conversation to take place, by covering the cost of the call. What advertisement could ever beat the endorsement of an actual guest, in the room, excitedly talking about being treated well?

The Lesson: It’s the little things that get people talking.


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