5 Unexpected Ways to Boost Word-of-Mouth Referrals

5-unexpected-ways-to-boost-word-of-mouth-referrals

Word-of-mouth marketing has long been viewed as the most effective form of business promotion. According to MarketForce over “81% of U.S. online consumers’ purchase decisions are influenced by their friends’ social media posts“. While all marketers appreciate it when satisfied customers tell their friends about favorite products or experiences, they still struggle with how to ensure that they are getting positive word of mouth. Traditionally, word of mouth marketing was difficult to manage. It was too random, and too complex to influence, not to mention control. With emerging technologies it is becoming increasingly easy to generate buzz and track word-of-mouth referrals.

Getting customers to spread the good word about your company takes more than just luck. It takes hard work to deliver an experience that exceeds your customers’ expectations.

Here are five unexpected ways you can generate buzz and gain more word-of-mouth referrals.

1. Bring your print campaigns to life!

A sometimes overlooked technique that is  helpful to your band/business is the use of some traditional media, to accent what you are doing online. By using print campaigns to drive online business, you increase the likelihood of conversion rates by putting dynamic mobile entry points on mailers and magazine ads you give customers a new and engaging way to interact with you. This allows you to reach new audiences and gather valuable information on your target audience.

2. SMS Text Messaging

This technology has been around for over 20 years, but is integral to mobile marketing. It’s accessible to all mobile phone users which means you don’t exclude anyone from your offers and promotions. Text Messaging,  also known as SMS (Short Messaging System) has amazing open and engagement rates, and users can easily sign up to be included in your campaigns. Once you have your customer’s attention and they have opted-in for updates, you can send out segmented text campaigns to alert customers to new locations, promotions, events, and sales.

3. UPC Barcode & QR Codes

If your product has a UPC bar code it can be used to maximize interaction with your customers. CPG brands can add a communication layer to entice customers in to an engaging purchase experience or offers and rewards. If need be full product details or product recall information can be added.

Quick Response codes (QR Codes) pack an information punch. These codes are one of many Mobile Entry Points that can be accessed via a smartphone. If you print your dynamic QR Code on a flyer or other piece of marketing material, you can change the message behind the QR Code without having to reprint the flyer! This makes that piece of marketing collateral all the more valuable as you can always keep it up to date with your latest offer, special or reward.

4. Make it worth your customer’s while to talk

Arguable the best way to convince someone to do you a favor (customers included) is to offer him or her something. In the world of online retail that’s easy. Coupon and incentive programs are pervasive, and they are something that customers of all stripes will understand. Offer them a simple discount or giveaway a popular product as a thank you or incentive to provide your business with some word of mouth.

5. Go mobile

Above all, do not underestimate the importance of appealing to the mobile market. Thousands of potential customers are on mobile devices today looking for what you have to offer.  Mobile entry points allow you to integrate your marketing campaigns, giving you valuable data and analytics while increasing your traffic and leads.

Customers will rely on mobile devices to access accounts for convenience sake. Therefore, if your Word Of Mouth campaign is not optimized for mobile usage, you are only hurting your conversion rates.

SEE IT IN ACTION!

You read our top tips on how to boost your word-of-mouth traffic, now see how BestBuzz used word-of-mouth to generate buzz for author Jessica Hagy’s new book “The Art of War Visualized”

Jessica Hagy Word-Of-Mouth Book Buzz

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8 Ways to Use Social Listening for Your Business

8-ways-use-social-listening-for-your-business

Do you monitor what people are saying about you online?

Are you using this information to enhance your business?

The insights you gather about your customers, prospects, products and competitors with social listening can be valuable.

In this article you’ll discover eight ways to use social listening for your business.

Why Social Listening?

Social listening (or media monitoring, as some people like to call it) is about searching the web and the social space to see what’s being said about your company, your competitors and other topics of interest.

With a little time and creativity, you can go beyond just monitoring your brand and use social listening to enhance content marketing, business development, product management, human resources and customer support.

Here are eight ways social listening can benefit your business.

#1: Generate Leads by Solving Problems

One way to find new business opportunities is to monitor keywords that relate to people’s problems and needs or their frustrations with a competitor’s product.

Monitor terms like “[competitor’s brand name] can’t” or “[competitor’s brand name] won’t” to identify pain points.

Once you identify these potential customersreach out to them. Ask them what their expectations are for the product and where it’s falling short. Then explain your product’s benefits and added value, and make yourself available for questions. You may also want to provide a demo of your product.

#2: Attract New Customers

To generate new leads for your business, brainstorm for keywords that people might use when researching a product and track these terms across forums and social groups.

Join the conversations and find out more about any potential customers’ needs and expectations. Be genuine in your interactions.

Later, check your database to see if anyone from the forum signed up to try your productSend those new customers an email offering to personally help them get started.

#3: Identify Influencers and Advocates

After a big product launch or update, track the link to or the title of your press release to see who’s sharing it. This information helps you identify influencers in your industry. Reach out to them to start building relationships.

You’ll also want to identify your biggest brand advocates. Find and reward them with giveaways or special offers. Continue to keep them engaged as your brand grows, because satisfied customers are one of your greatest marketing resources.

#4: Discover Where Your Community Hangs Out

Social listening enables you to find out where your potential and current community members carry on important conversations—Twitter, Facebook, Quora, comments on blogs or somewhere else. Track these conversations, and when the time is right, join in.

#5: Improve Customer Care

With social listening, you can instantly identify both positive and negative feedback.

Monitor your brand name with and without the @ symbol (many people forget to add the @ symbol when communicating on Twitter).

Also, track common auto-correct misspellings for your brand name and monitor your website mentions (for example, www.yourbrand.com and yourbrand.com).

This gives you the opportunity to show your appreciation for positive comments or to find and respond to disappointed customers, turning potentially negative experiences into positive ones. If people take the time to write about issues with your product, they’re open to your help.

#6: Get Feedback on Products

Social listening also helps you identify potential issues early in a product’s life cycle.

Track your brand name’s mentions and if someone posts a bug about your product, assign the issue to your development team so it can be fixed as quickly as possible.

Then, respond directly to your customer to nurture transparency. If feasible, use your personal email account rather than your company account to show the human side of your business.

#7: Find Top Talent

Your human resources department can benefit from social listening, too. Hiring top talent is frequently a challenge, but tracking conversations in forums, in social groups or on blogs can help you identify key candidates with remarkable skill sets.

#8: Drive Innovation

Asking your customers what they want, as tempting as that might be, can result in skewed answers, misinformation, and potentially, failed products.

Henry Ford famously said, “If I’d asked my customers what they wanted, they’d have said a faster horse.” It’s often easier for people to comment on something that is in front of them than to imagine something that doesn’t exist.

With social listening, you don’t have to ask people what they want; just listen in on their conversations and use these insights to figure out what they need.

Tools to Monitor Your Brand Reputation:

Google Alerts is a powerful tool for tracking your brand’s mentions, trends and other interesting topics across the internet. To create an email alert, type in your company’s name or the keyword you want to monitor. You can even use advanced operators in the search box for better results, just like you would in Google Search.

Quora is another free resource to track what people are saying about your product or other relevant topics. However, you can only monitor those mentions within the site itself. Search for specific questions or topics related to your target market’s needs and follow those relevant to your business. You’ll receive updates in your Quora feeds and notifications by email.

Twitter Advanced Search is often overlooked, but it’s a valuable tool for refining Twitter search queries and zeroing in on the people talking about your brand or competing brands. You can use operators—and exclusion operators—to filter your results. There are also options for targeting a specific group of people or a geographic location.

Social Mention works in a similar way to Twitter’s Advanced Search, except you get the results from all over the social media space, in addition Twitter. To get started, enter the keywords or topic you want to search and select the type of results from the drop-down menu. Use the advanced settings for more filtering options like geo-location and language. On the results page, your influence score is divided into four categories: strength, sentiment, passion and reach. You can also see your top keywords and brand advocates.

Tools to Create a Keyword List:

Rather than just compiling a list of keywords by trial and error, use tools like these to make the process quicker and easier.

Keyword Tool gives you keyword ideas based on what people type into the Google search box. For example, want to track conversations about “social monitoring,” you may see suggestions like “social monitoring software” or “social monitoring service.”

Google Trends analyzes search queries, looks at the number of searches for keywords and shows how trends evolve so you can find out how people search for your brand or competing brands. You can compare trends by adding a second search term, plus it suggests a list of related search topics you might add to your keyword list.

Get More Out of Social Listening

Social listening goes well beyond just monitoring your brand’s reputation. You can use social listening insights to improve many aspects of your business, including business and product development, human resources and customer care.

Now you need to find out how to make social listening work for your business. If you’re interested in how to build a social listening dashboard, be sure to check out this article.

What do you think? How are you using social listening to improve your business? Please share your thoughts and tips in the comments below!

SOURCE: Social Media Examiner

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[Infographic] The ROI of Social Media

Is social media marketing effective? That’s the question being asked as more and more businesses are investing in increasing amounts of social media marketing.  With no standard means of measurement, there’s a wide variety of goals and metrics used to define the ROI of social strategies. Fortunately, this enlightening infographic, developed by MDG Advertising, helps clear up the confusion by outlining the objectives, benefits and factors that affect the success of social media marketing.

4 Factors For Measuring Social Media

  1. Studying sales increases and the decline of costs.
  2. Has your brand recognition greatly improved among audiences?
  3. Can you easily tend to issues that relate to your brand?
  4. Have your digital assets improved along with your brand?

Defining Objectives
Business objectives are not the same for every business, which is why it’s important to define objectives prior to social media implementation. Consider the following:

- Brand recognition
- Engagement with your current customers
- Sales (short-term basis)
- Improving your company’s “searchability”
- The dispersal of company information and news

Measuring Social Media Marketing Activities
The following percentage of CMOs use these metrics to measure social marketing merits:

- Conversion (66%)
- The number of page views (43%)
- Revenue (50%)
- The number of members (63%)
- Site traffic (68%)

Social Media Recruitment
Social media is necessary for companies to engage with customers, as well as enlist new talent. Trends And Facts To Note:

- Over a long-term basis, social media marketing significantly cuts marketing costs.
- The infographic reports how 45% of social media marketers were able to build new partnerships via social media.
- Social media has assisted 72% of marketers in “closing business.”

The ROI of Social Media

SOURCE: MDG Advertising

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[INFOGRAPHIC] A Dr. Seuss Inspired Guide to Twitter

Since the release of  Twitter in 2006, use of the social network on has skyrocketed to over 500 million tweets per day and continues to grow. Twitter is now one of the top contributors of traffic for bloggers and brands. A recent study shows that 49% of monthly Twitter users follow brands or companies, compared to just 16% of social network users overall. So how can you increase the likelihood that your tweets get shared and clicked on?

Here’s a handy infographic tilted A Dr. Seuss Inspired Guide to Twitter from the hootsuite team that proposes some tips to successfully marketing on Twitter.

Some key takeaways are:

Let Tweets Breathe: If you send Tweets too much, you’ll risk looking like spam.

Pay Attention To Trends: Don’t ignore what people like.

You Don’t Need All 14o Characters: Short tweets make it easier for people to share your story.

BestBuzz_INFOGRAPHIC_A_Dr_Seuss_Inspired_Guide_to_Twitter

Source: A Dr. Seuss Inspired Guide to Twitter

Original artwork by @designowls

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10 Best Practices for Pinterest Mobile Marketing [INFOGRAPHIC]

Since the release of the Pinterest mobile app, use of the social network on mobile devices has skyrocketed in comparison with the web version and continues to grow. Pinterest is now one of the top contributors of traffic for bloggers and brands and much of this is thanks to Pinterest mobile. A recent study shows that 75 percent of all daily Pinterest traffic comes from mobile devices while nearly 50 percent of all social sharing on iPads is from Pinterest. So how can you increase the likelihood that your pins get shared and clicked-through on the mobile app?
Here’s a handy infographic tilted Complete Guide to Pinterest Mobile Marketing from everypost team that proposes some tips to successfully marketing on Pinterest mobile.


Some key takeaways are:

Use easy to read fonts: Make sure text images are legible on a small screen.

Share GIFs: GIFs are very engaging and can be viewed in the iOS and Android app.

Caution! Links in Pin Descriptions are not Clickable: Make sure your pins link back to your website under “source”. Links in the pin description are not clickable on Pinterest mobile.

pinterest mobile marketing infographic

Source: 10 Best Practices for Pinterest Mobile Marketing Infographic

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Traditional Marketing vs Growth Hacking [INFOGRAPHIC]

WHAT IS GROWTH HACKING?:

Since there is a lot of debate lately about what growth hacking is and how it differs from traditional marketing,our friends over at Direct Spark  put together this infographic to illustrate the difference.

Here are some tweetable tidbits:

1. Make people want the product vs Make a product people want. – Tweet This!

2. The characteristics of a Growth Hacker: data-driven, analytical, T-shaped - Tweet This!

3. Growth Hacking use the product itself as a distribution channel. - Tweet This!

traditional marketing vs growth hacking (infographic)
Source: Traditional marketing vs Growth Hacking – Infographic

 

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