Word-Of-Mouth Marketing and PR Tips
Recently, I spoke with Andy Sernovitz, marketing expert and author of “Word of Mouth Marketing – How Smart Companies Get People Talking.” He provided some great insights for small business owners:
Briefly, what is word-of-mouth marketing and why is it important to small business owners?
Word of mouth marketing is: 1) giving people a reason to talk about your stuff, and 2) making it easier for the conversation to take place. It’s about doing remarkable things and earning that great recommendation.
How does public relations fit into word-of-mouth marketing?
Great PR people are great word-of-mouth marketers. It’s a very similar process:
1) Find the right people to talk about you;
2) Build a relationship based on trust;
3) Give them something genuinely great to talk about.
If you get 1, 2, and 3 right, other people tell your story for you. For PR, it’s reporters and a great pitch. For word-of-mouth, it’s consumers and a great experience.
In your opinion, how can new business owners use publicity to increase sales without spending a lot of money?
Be unique. Being good isn’t good enough — We assume all businesses should be good. You need to do better … to have a story worth telling. If you’ve backed that into your brand, conversations will start, and the press and public will talk about you.
In your book, you mention that “online tools spark conversations that may begin on the Internet but don’t necessarily end there.” What are the top three ways you think entrepreneurs can use the Internet to effectively spread the word about their new products and services?
The two essential tools are a great blog and a great e-mail newsletter. These are the tools you need to tell your story, and they are the platforms that your fans use to repeat your story. A great blog is fun, fascinating, and a good read. A great newsletter is one “Aha!” idea each week. Get those right, and people will pass them on forever. (Blogs and e-mail are unique in the marketing arsenal — They are the only forms of marketing that consumers voluntarily read.)
What are some other tips you can offer small business owners who want to increase sales and awareness via word-of-mouth?
Topics: Give People a Reason to Talk
Tools: Help the Message Spread
Taking Part: Join The Conversation
Tracking: Measure and Listen