Marketing is one of the scariest departments of blogging (SEO is another one of those).
The word “marketing” sounds too geeky and too alien that it makes most bloggers faint; as if it is not for the faint hearted!
And in fact marketing is not a separate department as many bloggers think of! It is so very well integrated within whatever you do with blogging.
You write a blog post – that is marketing
You leave a blog comment – that is marketing
You do a guest post – that is marketing
You share your blog post in social media – that is marketing
You connect with a new person (peer, influencer, or reader) – that is marketing
You write an email to your subscriber list – that is marketing
As you can see marketing is pretty much integrated with whatever you do with blogging. In fact you are casually already actively “doing” marketing even if that word scares the crap out of you!
In this blog post, I am not going to talk about the marketing you think of. It is not about paying for Facebook ads. It is not about your Adwords ads that run.
It is not about those banner ads you purchase hoping people will click through.
This is a totally different area of marketing that in fact shouldn’t cost you money. It does cost you time but you will find it really amusing.
Let’s talk about word of mouth marketing!
What is word of mouth marketing?
Word of mouth marketing is nothing but others spreading the word for you. Simple, right?
It does sound simple. But it is not really simple to make it work for you.
People don’t simply talk about you! You need to give them an experience more than your product or service; and mind you, let that “experience” be an exceptional one, hopefully, so you get people to talk nicely about you (and not the other way around).
I went to a restaurant with my family last week. It was our first visit to that particular restaurant. We went there purposefully to test it since we’ve been seeing it quite some time.
Here are certain things that caught my attention:
(i) We were warmly welcomed at the door – a group of attenders were waiting by the door to greet us and show us the way in to our table.
(ii) Our toddler was given special attention at the table.
(iii) The waiter stood by our table very patiently until we were finished with our chaotic discussion about the dishes!
(iv) The food tasted fantastic.
(v) A very hot (spicy) dish was modified especially for our kid (with the addition of sweet sauce) so he too can enjoy it.
…. And a few more things!
As you can see, I am writing about this restaurant in my blog post. I am NOT paid by them to talk about their restaurant.
The experience I had during the dinner at that restaurant gives me a good reason to mention it to you.
The same applies to your blog! If your readers have had a great experience at your blog (or with your product or service) they will automatically talk about you. They will automatically spread the word – without you having to ask them to do so.
This is word of mouth marketing.
But it is not really simple. It is (almost) free. But you have to earn it. You cannot simply appoint few marketing personnel, have a marketing department and assume it is done!
Why does Word of Mouth Marketing ROCK?
I’d say WOMM rocks. It does. Much more than any other traditional marketing technique – or the so very latest marketing technique you learned in one of the latest business courses.
Let’s see why!
For one it is (almost) free
WOMM doesn’t require you to burn a hole in your pocket by paying for those CPC ads or banner ads. But it is not totally free, I agree on that.
In order to “please” your customers you will have to invest yourself – your time, your work and much more.
You might have to invest in good quality software, themes, scripts, and other stuff like these.
But it is not like the money you spend on standard advertising or marketing. This is different.
With standard advertising you spend raw hot cash; you even experiment with your hard earned money.
WOMM is playing safe. You don’t throw away cash upfront to see if people click through and get back to your site.
You can do lots of experimenting without having to worry about money leaving your pocket in jet speed!
Word of mouth marketing builds up your authority
This is another thing with WOMM that you cannot get with conventional advertising/marketing. When you put up a banner ad, you are talking about yourself.
You are telling people that your product is great and that they should buy it.
With WOMM, others talk about you. They endorse you. They tweet about you. They write blog posts about you and link to you.
This way, your authority builds up in the blogosphere. This is sweet and I am sure you cannot get this benefit in the conventional marketing/advertising.
WOMM is not “bombarding on the face of your audience”
Think about conventional advertising where you do your best to explain to your audience about how great your product is.
You interfere them with a pop up or a slide in or a flash ad. You write sales letters that are filled with hype!
You design colourful banners – you choose psychologically proven colour combinations on your banner ads so you can make people click through.
You set a time limit for your offers and push people to get on it. All this is powerful marketing. But this is also “punch-in-the-face-marketing”.
WOMM is nothing like any of these! You don’t have to sweat over forcing people to notice. Your happy customers and followers will do it for you.
And people usually pay attention if someone else other than the product owner praises the product. We all know that a product owner will certainly tell only nice things about their own product.
But if hundreds of other people are saying that, it carries more weight – and it is not punching in the face. People slowly start paying attention to what their friends are saying!
WOMM scales up and goes autopilot over the time
This is plain fact. Once the good words start to spread, this can create an avalanche effect. More and more people will start to talk about you and this scales up.
Over the time you will find that your company’s marketing is taken care of on autopilot, even when you sleep – not by the CPC campaign that also takes away money from your pocket while you sleep!
But it gets more and more people talk about you over the time, so literally it gets on autopilot for you, for good!
Convinced word of mouth marketing is something that absolutely works?
Are you convinced yet? I hope so. It is pathetic to see that most bloggers are willing to spend quite some money on other forms of advertising and marketing but fail to pay the least attention to make word of marketing work for them.
This WOMM goldmine stands unattended in the career of most bloggers. This short post is to create the awareness! I hope you will focus on making word of mouth marketing work for you.
As to “how” to make word of mouth marketing work for you – another post is coming up!