Three ways to increase your online word of mouth
Posted: July 9, 2012 | 11:30 ET by Tessa Wegert
We all know the power of referrals. Even as countless new digital marketing platforms emerge, strategists never stop coveting word of mouth. The reason? It works. According to WOMMA (the Word of Mouth Marketing Association), word of mouth is currently the major driving force for consumer purchasing decisions, followed by websites, e-mails from friends, and online reviews. It's also considered to be the most credible source of information, with 59 percent of consumers reporting offline (face-to-face) word of mouth to be highly credible, compared with 49 percent who say the same about word of mouth online.
A new report from Ipsos confirms these statistics as they relate to social media. According to the research firm, nearly one in four people say they would buy a brand because someone they know has 'Liked' or followed it through a social network.
This makes a strong argument for maintaining a presence on social sites. But how does one ensure that this will lead to 'Likes' ?
1. Focus your call to action on follows. When crafting social site ad copy (and even ad copy intended for display ads elsewhere on the Web), emphasize the benefits users stand to get by following or 'Liking' your brand (special offers, exclusive content, coupons, and so on).
2. Use Facebook's tagging feature to your brand's advantage. Instead of linking to your page in your Facebook status updates, which requires users to visit the page in order to 'Like' it, type the name of your brand or product in your status field with an @ symbol directly in front of it (e.g. @globeandmail). When users hover over the word, they'll have the ability to 'Like' your brand on the spot.
3. Install 'Like' boxes, Twitter windows, and Pinterest badges across your campaign. Cross-media marketing is an excellent way to attract users to your social media pages. Include buttons and boxes that link to them (available on social media site developer pages free of charge) on your brand and product sites and even offline in order to increase your fan base.
(Ed. note: This is Tessa's final blog posting for Globelink. We'd like to extend a huge note of thanks for her great contributions to our site, as the Interactive Strategist. For the past five years, Tessa's blog and articles have been a great asset and thoroughly enjoyed by the Globelink audience.)
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Tessa Wegert is a veteran media strategist with a background in media planning and buying, content development, ad copywriting, and campaign management. As a prominent industry writer she has been covering digital marketing and technology for leading newspapers and trade publications for over a decade. Connect with her on Twitter (@tessawegert) and LinkedIn.