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What is Word of Mouth Advertising?

First, let’s come up with a definition that what the term word of mouth advertising means it is the type of promotion also called real essence of the marketing efforts in which the satisfied customers tell other people that how much they like the service or product.

Importance of the word of mouth advertising for business

Word of mouth is, in fact, the most potent type of promotion that is not sponsored directly by a marketing department but is the most beneficial type of advertising. Using this type of marketing, cause the customer base of the business to increase by attracting dozens of customers toward products offered by companies. The most important benefit that a business derived from word of mouth of marketing is that it decreases the advertisement budget and help marketing to attain efficiency. Efficiency in business is defined as the maximum return with the minimum effort.

WOM does not stop after one interaction, so the scope of this type of promotion is widespread. The effectiveness of word of mouth is statistically proven that the people trust word of mouth generated by their closed ones like friends and family. According to Neilson study, 92% of the consumers of a product or service preferred suggestion from friends and family so if 92% of consumers trust word of mouth generated by their close circle, then it shows the value of WOM.

Another factor that adds up in the importance of WOM marketing is the threat of negative word of mouth. Yes, it is a bitter reality that bad customer experience often leads to the generation of negative word of mouth that is more critical than any other threat to the brand equity of the company. Business has very little control over the direction of WOM which can be positive or negative.

word of mouth sharing

Ways to improve Word of mouth generation

It is true that you as a business can have millions of subscribers and followers on your social media platforms but it is not necessary that these subscribers and followers will generate positive word of mouth. You have to understand basic mechanism behind the generation of WOM and ways to trigger these so that customers that are generating this WOM became your referral network. So, Marketers should focus on the following points to ensure the generation of positive word of mouth:

1. Putting the focus on customer experience

The overall process of WOM marketing starts with the best customer experience. Just going above the customer expectation does not make the customer talk about you. Some serious effort requires to make customer delighted and to generate positive word of mouth from delighted consumers.

2.Putting the focus on the physical and non-verbal statements

Physical and non-verbal statements are one of the important triggers of Word of mouth generation but they must go beyond normal. Some of the examples of the nonverbal statements are the following:

  • Physical statement

Physical statements are normally depicted by architecture Like your business is related to Car washing and decoration then you can hang a fully decorated car on the front of your garage as it looks funny and different then surely it causes the customer plus audience talk about it and end with the word of mouth generation.

  • Nonverbal statement

Nonverbal statements are depicted by the attitude of the staff in the business. For example, in case of the restaurant when the management gives a gift a toy to toddler came with a family that makes the customer valued and delighted so by this small act you can generate a positive word of mouth. Another example is that when management of a restaurant allows their guest to choose a dessert for free from the expensive dessert menu. Yet the management can recover the cost of this offer from other services but this will generate positive word of mouth for business.

3. Putting the focus on events that provoke emotions

This is a fact that people use to share and talk about the things that make them upset or extremely happy. So, for business, it is important to find the events and occasion that provoke the emotion of the customer to make them a passionate fan of business and talk about the business. Example of these events or occasion are religious events and disaster that hit the country. In the case of religious events like Christmas, business management can offer a special discount or sponsor a party or an event related to the religious event. These discounts and sponsorship cause generation of positive word of mouth from the audience that attends the event.

people working on a desk

Three E’s of Word of mouth advertising

Traditionally marketing students are familiar with the four P’s of marketing that are Product, Price, Place, and Promotion. But now a day for the generation of word of mouth advertising campaigns it’s important to understand the three E’s that are Engage, Empower and equip. If you focus on these E’s you can effectively increase the sale of the business by generating good WOM advertising campaign. Detail of these three E’s are as follows:

  • Engage

Engage with your fans, listen to them be part of their conversation. Be present in your fan’s live. @Nikesupport is a good example of customer service.

  • Equip

Give your fans a reason to talk. It can be amazing service or product, social knowledge, incredible stories and cab be even funny disclosures. It depends totally on you and your fans that what they love to hear from your side.

  • Empower

Give your consumers a different way to talk and share. Let them realize that how important is their opinion about your business and how important they are.


  • kurtz, D. (2008). Contemporary Marketing. 14th ed.
  • Kotler, P. and Armstrong, G. (2011). Principal of Marketing. 14th ed. Pearson Prentice Hall.
  • Forbes.com. (2014). Why Word Of Mouth Marketing Is The Most Important Social Media. [online] Available at: https://www.forbes.com/sites/kimberlywhitler/2014/07/17/why-word-of-mouth-marketing-is-the-most-important-social-media/#640ac3f754a8 [Accessed 18 Jan. 2019].