5 ways to get started with word of mouth today

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Word of mouth is something you can be amazing at — and it’s something you can start today. You don’t need a big budget or a detailed marketing plan to get going. Here’s what to try this morning:

1. Assign someone to find conversations about you and join in
2. Ask “Would anyone tell a friend?” about everything you do
3. Add a word of mouth tool to everything you sell
4. Embed simple sharing tools on every page of your website
5. Do something unexpected

1. Assign someone to find conversations about you and join in

People are already talking, you just need to find and join them. Start by setting up simple searches for your brand and relevant industry keywords. Assign someone to track and join these conversations. Just be polite, say who you are, and be helpful. If there’s a problem, fix it. If a happy fan is talking about you, thank them. Do this for a month and see how many great connections you make, happy customers you meet, and frustrated customers you win over.

2. Ask “Would anyone tell a friend?” about everything you do

Start making and doing more remarkable stuff by asking this big question about everything you do: “Would anyone tell a friend about this?” Using this lens to look at everything you do is the secret to creating a culture that makes stuff worth talking about. Write it down today, post it on the wall, and encourage everyone start asking it.

3. Add a word of mouth tool to everything you sell

Start testing things that help customers tell the next people they see about you. Add extra samples to your shipments, give them stickers, catalogs, white papers, something chocolate, or branded gear. The moment a customer makes a purchase is a great time to inspire a conversation — so start testing a bunch of stuff now and see what works.

4. Embed simple sharing tools on every page of your website

Sharing tools make it easy for people to share your content — and they’re now easier to embed on a website than they’ve ever been. There are a ton of off-the-shelf tools that don’t require a programmer to install — and most won’t cost you a thing. We’ve used SocialTwist and AddThis for all-in-one tools, but other options include Lockerz Share, ShareThis, and Sharebar (and a whole bunch of others). And if you don’t mind a little HTML, every social network offers their own simple share code too (Ex: Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Google+).

5. Do something unexpected

A quick way to jump-start your word of mouth program is to thrill your fans and customers with something they didn’t see coming. Send them flowers. Feature them on your blog or in your newsletter. Give them an unexpected upgrade. Just get started by trying a bunch of little things — if something gets people talking, do more of that.

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