According to Nielsen research, recommendations are one of the top five influences on consumer decisions. The Pew Research Center says that 72% of people get news from friends and family, making word-of-mouth the most popular channel for sharing. The data makes a compelling claim that word-of-mouth marketing is of vital importance to both sellers and consumers. In fact, it’s widely believed that word of mouth marketing can ten times more effective than traditional advertising.
The same was true 20 years ago, with the exception that word of mouth was literally “word of mouth,” as the majority of networking happened when a seller was often physically face to face with their prospect. Thanks to ever-changing technology, the concept has now evolved to include online interactions. However, the result is the same: word-of-mouth marketing = sales.
In fact, even in the tech era, 83% of consumers say they either completely or somewhat trust recommendations from family, colleagues, and friends about products and services, according to a study done by Nielsen about digital formats as a trusted source of advertising.
This information denotes a real problem in the marketing strategy of most companies. After all, word of mouth marketing is difficult (sometimes impossible) to account for in a marketing budget. And, like other forms of unpaid advertising, it can be difficult to accomplish at all.
Luckily, technology represents an easy solution, as the marketing industry is saturated with digital tools that are designed to improve your prospecting by utilizing social sharing platforms in order to distribute your message. So, how do you decide which digital tool(s) is best for your company’s expanding needs? Here are a few questions to ask when considering a new tool:
- Is the tool customizable to adapt to your company’s individual needs?
- Does the tool work seamlessly across a number of popular social media platforms?
- Does the tool include follow-up capabilities to ensure that distributors can capitalize on potential interest from prospects?
- Does the tool provide a way to take a conversation offline, into a more personal and effective environment?
- Does the tool allow your distributors to share a compliant, professional version of your company’s story?
What other questions do you think are important to ask before committing to a new tool? We’d love your feedback! Send your comments and suggestions to us below.