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The current digital era consists of constant noise and shiny objects, and it can be easy to get carried away or overwhelmed. When you’re in marketing or sales, you’re constantly being told what you should or shouldn’t be doing, verticals you should or shouldn’t be pursuing, and there’s always a hot new social media platform “you just have to be on.”
The result usually ends up as diluted marketing messaging and an impersonal experience for the audiences you’re trying to connect with. When searching for new ways to build brand awareness, one of the most effective options is to bolster your word-of-mouth marketing tactics. It’s been shown that consumers are 4x more likely to make a purchase when they’re referred by a friend.
Here are three ways to get people talking about your brand:
Listen to your consumers
One of the key mistakes marketers make is failing to hear what their consumers actually want. It seems obvious, but it happens all the time. Oftentimes entrepreneurs create a vision for a company and got too attached to pivot when their audiences are actually craving something different. To get people talking, first, you must listen.
Plain and simple, if you start delivering exactly what your consumers are asking for, they won’t be able to help but refer you to their friends.
Create an incentive-based referral program
Perhaps the most effective ways to boost word-of-mouth marketing to get people talking about you is incentive-based referral programs. This creates brand ambassadors for your company who get rewarded to talk about you to their friends. The best rewards programs incentivize both online and offline referrals with discounts, drawing entries or free gear. A recent study showed that companies with formalized referral programs experience 86% more revenue growth.
Key tip! Reward your customers with non-cash incentives. Non-cash incentives have been proven to be 24% more effective at boosting performance than their cash-incentive counterparts.
Leverage your connections
The best marketing strategies in the world are not only effective at gaining new followings but engaging the ones they’ve attracted for a long period of time. By continuing to work with your audiences and making them remember on a regular basis why they believe in your company, you’ll breed brand ambassadors. The people they refer will be more likely to keep engaged with your company too because the lifetime value for a new customer referred by a friend is more than 15% higher than non-referrals.
We’ve all heard about the six degrees of separation. Your network of followers, friends, colleagues and connections also has their own networks, which you can tap into to see who they know. Chances are, they know people that would benefit from your company and would be able to help make the introduction for you—because who wants a cold conversation?
Creating referral programs and leveraging connections can be tricky business, so be sure to do your research on things that will make your job easier. Word-of-mouth has been shown to improve marketing effectiveness by over 50%, so it’s in every marketer’s best interest to do everything they can to get people talking about their brand.