The Power of Connection

Sixth in a series analyzing seven new economy trends

According to Forrester Research, only 6 percent of American consumers agree with the statement: “Companies generally tell the truth in advertising.” No wonder Word of Mouth (in its many forms) has become the marketing rage of the recession.

Word of Mouth marketing, or WOM, is made up of countless subcategories that include viral, social, grassroots, cause, buzz, product seeding, and insider (or influencer) programs. A key tenant of WOM is that content or commentary is generated by the consumer rather than the marketer, thus the perception that the information that is shared is more credible. That information is shared consumer-to-consumer or consumer-to-marketer.

It goes without saying (so why do I feel the need to say it?) that WOM works for you, or your organization, when you offer something people want to talk about. The more “talkable,” the faster communications will spread. By its very nature, the great power in WOM is the fact that it is exponential; i.e., I told two friends, who told two friends, who told two friends… . Keep this strategy in mind as you build your communications program, and add WOM components to it.

Start here: To whom are you talking? (It’s an ages-old consideration.)

But then things take a bit of a new turn. With whom does he/she congregate? Where? What is it that links them? What is the basis for their shared interest? What do they talk about? What do they do?

Of course, many of these new communities are digital, so opportunities to intersect are endless. Just be sure you intersect with something that is “talkable,” and provide tools that make it easy for them to share their opinions. Then motivate your advocates to spread the word.

There is a new frontier out there, and it is fueled by interesting conversation. Go bravely toward it.

This entry was written by Cathy Monetti, posted on September 3, 2009 at 9:26 am, filed under Consumer Behavior, Offerings, Social Consciousness, Social Media, Trend: Localism and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.

Comments are closed.