Word-of-mouth is one of the most powerful forms of marketing.
It creates organic conversations about your brand. In fact, Nielsen found that 92% of people believe recommendations from friends and family over all forms of marketing.
The question becomes: how do you master word-of-mouth-marketing? In other words, how do you get people talking and raving about your business?
Well, it won’t usually happen by itself. You need to do the right things to get the process started.
Today, we’ll talk about how to generate word-of-mouth as a small business…
Employ Customer Loyalty Programs
Customer loyalty programs reward customers for their loyalty. A good loyalty program will keep your customers excited about doing business with you, and they’ll want to tell their friends about it!
Here are some customer loyalty program ideas:
- Offer customers an annual discount
- Offer free shipping on certain products
- Create a customer rewards program
Incentivize Customers to Refer Family and Friends
Companies like Uber, AirBnB, and Chase have mastered customer referrals.
They each create incentives for current customers to refer others.
Uber provides ride discounts for each new referral, AirBnB provides coupon codes, and Chase offers 10,000 airline miles for each new referral for their Chase Sapphire card.
As a result, these companies get a steady stream of referrals that they probably otherwise may not have gotten – all because they incentivize their customers to refer people.
Brainstorm some ways you can incentivize your current customers to refer friends and family, and put them into action. This is one of the best ways to generate word-of-mouth.
Get Active on Social Media
Stay active throughout your social media accounts.
Aim to post engaging content that generates comments and encourages your followers to join in on the conversation.
For example, you can ask questions in your posts and ask people to respond in the comments. If you have a clothing brand, you can ask people to respond with a selfie of themselves in one of your awesome t shirts.
You can also post behind the scenes videos on your Instagram story – perhaps of how you make your t-shirts.
Provide Great Free Content
You should consistently create free content that helps your customers solve some of their biggest challenges. This content can come in the form of blogs, videos, cheat sheets, etc.
Your customers will appreciate this constant stream of value, and they’ll share it with others who face similar challenges. They’ll also be more likely to share it out on their social media accounts, which generates even more word of mouth.
Get Active in the Community
Sponsor community events, do volunteer work and get your name on some local sports jerseys. You can also host in-store (or in-office) events for your current customers and encourage them to invite friends and family.
These things will put you out in front in your community, while also creating more of a community type of feel within your customer base. This is one of the big keys to turning casual customers into raving fans!
Keep Your Reputation Strong
Your reputation is critical when it comes to word-of-mouth. If you have a poor reputation, people won’t want to associate themselves with you. They won’t feel good about talking to you. But if you have a good reputation, they’ll be excited to spread the word.
Here are some things you can do to keep your reputation secure:
- Post customer testimonials on your website
- Handle customer issues proactively by responding quickly on social media and solving problems before they escalate
- Do volunteer work around your community
Provide Great Customer Service
The better you treat your customers, the happier they’ll be, and the more they’ll want to rave about doing business with you.
Here are some ways you can provide excellent customer service:
- Hire a 24/7 virtual receptionist so that somebody is always there to answer calls and respond to customer inquiries
- Show customer appreciation by over-delivering on your promises, sending thank you emails, and offering assistance post-purchase
- Implement customer feedback so that your clients feel appreciated
Wrapping Up How to Generate Word-of-Mouth as a Small Business…
If you can create word-of-mouth as a small business, you’ll get more raving fans and customers. What’s more, your marketing efforts will be much more efficient.
If you follow the tips we’ve laid out here, you’ll be able to generate word-of-mouth around your small business quickly.