How to gain Word of Mouth
It is often said that word of mouth is the best way of getting business. This is true. But how do you get word of mouth? The best way to get word of mouth is by reputation. You work hard and do the right thing for your customers. They will then talk about you and recommend your business to their industry peers or colleagues. That’s because they trust you.
It’s important to note that word of mouth cannot be fabricated. People will either love you or they won’t. It can’t be forced.
So, what is word of mouth? It is that feeling that someone has about your business that impels them to let their world know about. It reflects on them. They have found this product/service that they are proud of because it helps them do what they do. They now want to share it with their contacts.
So, what if you wanted to enter a different market or segment where you have only done a little bit of work in. How do you get word of mouth then? You can’t ring someone and say “Hey Bill, is there any chance that you can tell Harry about our great reputation, although you may not know about it? You know I want you to send the word of mouth down the line”. If Bill did do that, then it is a referee not word of mouth and that’s a different thing. Word of mouth is a natural circumstance of doing the right thing.
Content Management Strategy
There is one way of getting word of mouth going and that is with a good Content Management Strategy.
Content Management is a type of marketing that involves the creation and sharing of online material (such as videos, blogs, and social media posts) that does not explicitly promote a brand but is intended to stimulate interest in your products or services.
I know most people will say, “we do post on social media, so what’s different?” Well, the difference is what you post. Most people will post things about what they have done. They built something or sold something that someone has got value out of. This is ok, but all it is doing is telling people what you do. That works well when a potential client is referencing you. But, if they are referencing you it means they have already found you. What if they haven’t found you yet?
A good Content Management Strategy will first work out what your business is all about. Your “why” or “purpose”. (see “The Why or Purpose” for more). When you find out ‘what you are about’ then you will know what is needed to help someone else with what you do. To explain. Let’s say that your company is all about making sure that people can get the best out of something. There is no point just talking about what you have done. What you need to be telling them is what you know about how to get their desired outcome. Stories like, “here is some pointers on how to do this”.
Looking at wider industries
Here’s an example. I have a client who is a personal trainer. His “why or purpose” is to help people with degenerative nerve conditions (such as Multiple Sclerosis) have a better quality of life. Most of his reputation is within the mainstream personal training industry. Although he has been helping people with these conditions for a while, he is still not in that industry’s word of mouth.
How does he move from training the general population to the different market?
The strategy would be that he does not tell people about who he trains. That is just experience. What he tells people is how they can get more out of life. In his media posts, he gives hints, stories, videos on what people with these conditions can be doing to get that better quality of life. This comes from his experience and knowledge. He is not a medical practitioner but he has the experience and works with the practitioners. Now he is giving a helping hand to the people who need it.
Here’s how the word of mouth works. Because he is helping and not selling, a potential customer will read (view, hear etc.) his advice and get some value from it. The more they read (view, hear etc.) the more they trust.
When they trust, they start to own the information then start to share it with their community. Thus, the word of mouth begins. More on his business here
It does take time and a considerable amount of thought. But that is all in the planning. This is a coordinated strategy that has timelines and dates when each post is done and where it is posted. There must be nothing left to chance, it all must be planned and organised.