word of mouth advertising

I’m a big fan of word of mouth advertising, its how I got most of my business. I’m kind of laid back, so I don’t go out there hustling people for business – well, I’ve actually tried that and it seems to have backfired, maybe because I was too honest – you’re website sucks probably wasn’t the best approach..lol but that’s not my point here. Word of mouth advertising is great, if someone thinks my services are spectular or great, they’re going to tell someone and then someone else.

I have to admit, sometimes I’m horrible about following up especially if you catch me off-guard and give me a phone number to call – kind of reminds of when I was an IT person and everyone would stop me in the hall to tell me their problem, at some point, you kind of start to tune them out or sometimes between me writing down a phone number and remembering where I put it or what piece of paper I wrote it on, I forget to do it and then I feel weird about calling someone I probably should have called 3 weeks ago (by now that person has found an accountant)
        – emailing me is the best way to contact me hands down, its there in print and I’ve got it, texting would probably work too, calling me, not so much.

But there is also negative word of mouth which just rubs me the wrong way, when you push the concept of selling yourself on people. I’ve said it before: making your clients work for you to get you work  and constantly selling yourself must be exhausting and its a real buzz-kill. Would you want a slimy salesman harrassing you all the time? And if perhaps, that getting your customers to tell their friends by ramming it down their throats on a constant basis is your idea of advertising, what do I get out of telling my friends?

For example, isn’t it great that you can come in anytime and get wellness care, tell your friends about us. Lets see I pay to come and get help anytime, I’m pretty sure you don’t see me for free and yes its great but stop being a car salesman, its kind of slimy. 

Another example if the form letters requesting you recommend at least 3 people that might benefit for your wonderful experience by sending the person requesting it their information. Kind of slimy in my opinion, I’m not giving out my friends and family’s personal information. If they’re interested in whatever I’ve been doing, they can read about it here and call themselves. I don’t give out personal information.

Now on the other hand, sending out a word of mouth advertising email campaign is great, it gets all the people on your list (the key word here is “your list” of contacts) to know about something you’ve done or if you have a new merchandise etc. There are also other forms of word of mouth advertising beyond just service, its that special touch you do for a client, like come help them with their bills every month or an interesting slogan or name of a company, its about architectural, kinetic, generous means of advertising.  Twitter is definetly a form of word of mouth advertising, get yourself on there and talk about something related to your business, get other people to follow you by being unique (and no, I don’t have a unique approach yet – working on it). A much better way to encourage your clients to spread the word is to have them write testitmonals for you, share their opinions on facebook or yelp.

Do something extraordinary, give away things, you can always make up for it in your pricing structure, for example, every once in awhile, I have freebie Mondays (more or less, that means I probably forgot to write down how long I did something for you and you got that for advice or discussion for free). Write a thank you note to a client, tell them how wonderful they are just because, be geniune, treat your clients and vendors like you want to be treated.

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