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3 common word of mouth mistakes

This is a post from our WordofMouth.org project. Check it out for more great word of mouth marketing tips like this every day.

When it comes to word of mouth marketing, there’s a lot of room for trial and error. It’s OK to experiment, to make mistakes, and to learn along the way.

But there are a few key fundamentals that you have to get right, or it just won’t work. Here are the most common mistakes that could be holding you back:

1. You’re not worth talking about
2. You’re forgetting to ask
3. You’re making it hard to talk

1. You’re not worth talking about

If you’re not doing something worth talking about, you can’t create word of mouth. It seems obvious, but too often we see frustrated marketers trying to create buzz about something that fundamentally isn’t buzzworthy. Is your product or service truly remarkable? Would anyone tell a friend about it? Remember: Good enough isn’t good enough anymore. That just gets you a seat at the table. Don’t stop until your stuff is fantastically wonderful, smelly, outrageous, goofy, life-saving, delicious, or deeply meaningful.

2. You’re forgetting to ask

Just ask. Happy customers would be glad to talk about you. It really is that simple. Remind them on their way out the door. Add it to your receipts. Send follow-up emails asking for reviews. Invite them to bring a friend next time. Tell them how much their feedback and referrals mean to you. When was the last time you asked your fans for some word of mouth?

3. You’re making it hard to talk

Your talkers are busy. Even the most loyal of fans won’t recommend you if you don’t make it really, really easy. Add simple sharing buttons to your website and shopping cart. Send them ready-to-forward emails. Give them lots of samples to take with them instead of just one. Offer them discount codes they can pass along. Give them stickers, business cards, hats, and t-shirts they can use to show their support. The easier you make it, the more word of mouth you’ll get.

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