Word-of-mouth marketing is the most effective and most profitable kind of marketing there is. It’s most the effective because it’s peer-to-peer marketing (a friend tells another friend) and therefore is more trusted than if you as a business owner were to say exactly the same thing to your audience. It’s the most profitable because it costs you almost nothing to achieve (compared to other marketing efforts that demand a lot of your time and effort).
If you want the benefits of more word-of-mouth marketing in your business, apply these three tips to your sales funnel:
Word-of-mouth sales funnel tip #1: Don’t wait until your Customer has already bought from you before you push to get word-of-mouth marketing. Get your Audience members, Leads, and Prospects promoting your business before they ever buy from you. Retweets are a good place to start. Or write something on your blog that gets people talking. But don’t stop there. Get creative. Groupon IS this business! It’s word-of-mouth marketing before a purchase is ever made.
Word-of-mouth sales funnel tip #2: Frame a word-of-mouth opportunity for your customer. Don’t just wait for them to find someone who needs your services. Tell them about a specific situation they’ll face and explain what they should do. For example, a real estate agent might tell a Customer who just bought a house: “When you have guests come over for a barbecue and they ooh and ahh about your wonderful new house — would you give them my name? I have a few more houses that are just like it that I think they might be interested in seeing.” When your Customer finds themselves in that exact situation, it will be more likely to trigger their memory and compel a recommendation than if you just left it open to them to recommend you whenever they wanted. (Hint: Make sure it’s a specific but common situation that they will likely be in).
Word-of-mouth sales funnel tip #3: Ask your buyers how they heard of you. When they tell you that someone told them about you, find out what was said. If you can find out without sounding like you’re interrogating them, inquire about the situation where the recommendation was made. Where were they? Who was recommender? What was the situation in which they gave your name? The more information you glean, the better you can make changes to your sales funnel to encourage more of the same word-of-mouth recommendations in the future.
Word-of-mouth marketing is SO good. The more recommendations you get, the less time you need to spend on marketing and the more profitable your business will be. That’s an equation that every business owner wants!