What do Costco, Spanx, and Krispy Kreme have in common? They don’t advertise. Neither does Sriracha nor Trader Joe’s. These brands save a significant amount of money on advertising programs because their customer advocates tout the quality of their products all on their own.
Businesses thrive from star ratings and reviews. Customers trust their peers more than ads, according to a 2017 Consumer Content Report from Stackla. About 60 percent of U.S. adults trust recommendations from family and friends. Consequently, only 42 percent trust brands when it comes time to make purchasing decisions.
But, what if you don’t sell mouth-watering products like custard-filled donuts that make heroes out of whoever brings them to the office? How do you get people to speak favorably about your brand? Aside from selling high-quality products while providing unbeatable customer service, here are three tactics to try.
1. Display testimonials from your customer advocates
Certain WordPress.com themes boast a testimonials feature to showcase customer satisfaction right on your site. You can filter through themes to find ones that contain this feature under the Feature tab by clicking Show all.
Ask satisfied customers or clients for permission to display their names, images, occupations, and locations. For maximum impact, ask them to share the following information:
- Their situation and why they used your products or services
- Any of your direct competitors that they considered, and why they decided that you were the best option
- How your product or service specifically solved their problem
- Any additional benefits they noticed from using your products or services
- A call to action encouraging others to try your products or services as well
2. Create useful content that’s easy to share
One surefire way to get people talking about your brand is by giving them something to talk about. You can do this by writing consistent, quality content that’s relevant to your audience. Get them involved in the process by requesting questions that you can answer through blog and social media posts.
3. Offer incentives
Everyone loves free samples. Turn shoppers into customer advocates by offering them (and anyone they refer) a discount or giveaway. ReferralCandy‘s widgets and email templates make this possible. Add the referral widget to your site to present visitors with popups that incentivize them to tell their friends about your brand in exchange for a reward.
Another way to drive word of mouth referrals is through social media contests and giveaways. PracticalEcommerce recommends using platforms like Rafflecopter, Wishpond, or Woobox to help run your social contests.
Encouraging customers to spread the word about your brand does take time, energy, and investment up front; however, it can result in perfecting your product and customer experiences. These resources can go a lot further than ads, and will save you money in the long run.
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