John Moore: How to Create Buzzworthy Topics — live from Word of Mouth Supergenius

9:35 — Bergen Anderson introduces John Moore, WOM Enthusiast for the Word of Mouth Marketing Association.

9:36 — John Moore begins talking about generating buzz, despite disliking the actual term buzz.

9:38 — 14,600 days is the average life expectancy of a Fortune 500 business. 40 years total.

9:39 — 3,100 days is the average life expectancy of a small business.

9:39 — Your business can be sustainable by having lasting conversations. Buzz doesn’t create evangelists. Evangelists create buzz. Starbucks is a brand that basically built itself on word of mouth in the 90’s. They spent their marketing dollars to make a more enjoyable coffee experience.

9:40 — The fruit of an evangelical customer is a new customer.

9:40 — Wom-ology: The arts and science of marketing without marketing, based on the fake study done by John Moore.

9:41 — Wom-ology has 3 parts:

1. Experience – Whole foods took the organic shopping experience from a chore to an adventure. They created evangelists that create buzz.

2. Explanation – Best Buy has taken a company culture of explaining things to customers in store, to Twitter with their Twelp force.

3. Entertaining – Remarkable things get remarked about.

9:44 — Advertising is not dead. 22% of advertising is responsible for starting conversation. Dos equis is a great example of entertaining with their, “Most Interesting Man in the World.”

9:45 — To be talkable, be original. Don’t pay attention to the consultant guy. How can you have a blue print for being  unique? You can’t. Be obvious. The more obvious you are, the more original you appear. Keith Johnstone from his book, “Impro” credited with that idea.

9:49 — Company’s personality is its best form of advertising

9:50 — We must learn from improv comedy. C-R-O-W

9:52 — Character – Communities naturally gather around companies with character. Improve one’s quality of life. Fix something that is wrong. Southwest Airlines fixed something that was wrong by not charging for bags and by having great customer service. Build upon something that is right. Dogfish head brewery makes beer that have flavor, earns opinions. Some people love the taste, some people hate it.

9:53 — Relationship – Treating customers like friends by listening, learning, and connecting. Virgin America gives free wifi on flights. They listen to their customers and deliver a service that allows for conversation during, before, and after flights.

9:55 — Objective – Have an objective. Toms shoes has a 1 for 1 business model. “Every person who wears our shoes becomes a marketer of our shoes.” -Blake Mycoskie, Toms Shoes

9:56 — Where – locate where your customers are today so you know where to be tomorrow.

9:57 — If you stay connected, stories will emerge and WOM will happen.


Q: Can you name a couple of business to business that live up to the standards you laid out.

A: John: Media Temple has 90,000 worldwide completely based on Word of Mouth marketing. Rackspace has built a community around the idea of fanatical customer support.

Q: Do you have any ideas for people who are already giving things away, that aren’t trying to sell a product? How can they grow their audience?

A: John: Find unexpected places to showcase what you give away. As an example, a piano player used to play in the concourse of the Atlanta airport. Have a call to action immediately following for people who may be interested in whatever skill or service you are offering.

Q: Is it too off putting to take word of mouth to the extreme? Can you go too far.

A: John: Yes. You have to open up the veil a little bit too give the users a peak behind the scenes, so they know you are genuine. No PR speak. Is the company culturally fit? If they are, let people in a little bit more and share with them.

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