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Bad situations are great opportunities to earn word of mouth

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

Because our world is run by humans, it’s a given that things will go wrong.

At some point, something is going to break. Maybe it’s your fault, maybe not. The details won’t matter to the customer that’s stranded, delayed, hopeless, and generally screwed.

And this is the point where great word of mouth marketers separate themselves from their competitors: They see it as an opportunity to go above and beyond. They amaze people with their quick work. They do whatever it takes to make it better. They offer hope to the hopeless.

And it works for anyone — regardless of size. It’s not about how big your budget is, it’s about how much you’re willing to hustle to make things right.

How a word of mouth marketing supergenius does it:

When a Southwest Airlines flight from Fort Lauderdale to Denver had to be diverted to Pueblo because of bad weather, passengers were forced to wait two hours on the ground until the Denver airport could reopen.

Passengers were tired, frustrated, and stuck.

And that’s when the Southwest pilot announced he was ordering pizza for everyone. About 30 minutes later, row by row, the pilot personally handed out slices to the stranded travelers.

Learn more: The Denver Channel and The Consumerist

(Photo by James Mino, featured in The Denver Channel.)

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