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How a focus on word of mouth changes your business

[Here's a recent post I did for the SmartBlog on Social Media. You can follow the blog here or subscribe to the newsletter here.]

When a company focuses on earning the respect and recommendation of their customers, it fundamentally changes the way a business operates. You become obsessed with the individual customer experience, you learn how rewarding it is to engage with your fans, and you find yourself, bit by bit, doing your part to make the world a little more pleasant to be a part of. And above all, you see why it’s more fun to work at a company people love to talk about.

What happens:

Things are nicer. When you’re focused on earning word of mouth, you empower your employees to deliver awesome service, to take extra care of your customers, and to challenge your business to be better every day. This proves to be more fun and more profitable than the alternative.

You can simplify. Everything boils down to the key question: “Would anyone tell a friend about this?” If not, is it really worth doing?

You’ve got more to spend on what counts. When you see how effective your fans are at bringing in your new customers, you can divert all the money you once spent on advertising into making your product and experience better — creating a powerful cycle leading to more word of mouth from more happy fans.

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  1. Debbie Petras May 15, 2009 at 5:21 pm #

    When you treat each customer well and provide a great product or service, good word of mouth spreads. As you always say Andy, it also helps when you provide an easy way for them to share with others. I do listen and learn from you. :) Thanks for that.

  2. Torley May 16, 2009 at 7:59 am #

    Key thing to remember: it sounds overly simple, such that many people will dismiss it out of a false sense of skepticism.
    Start experimenting and delivering to show there’s value.

  3. AliSwi May 19, 2009 at 9:28 am #

    It really is an amazing cycle. The verbal praise makes you want to do better and ensure that all customers experience such a high level of satisfaction. This also emphasizes the importance of and need to continually seek customer feedback. A lot of people won’t say anything if you don’t ask.


  1. OAS - How a focus on word-of-mouth brightens life for all - September 15, 2009

    […] took read of an excellent mini-post on Andi Sernovitz’s blog in which he briefly mentions the excellent, mutually beneficial, cycle which begins when companies […]

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