What follows is a guest post by Josh Peters.
What is the holy grail of marketing? WOM! Just let it roll off your tongue waaaahm.
WOM (word of mouth) is the ultimate goal of anyone who wants to grow their business. It’s a simple fact, we as humans trust other humans more than we do advertising and marketing. Even if those people are “strangers” they have more influence over our purchases than any other factor. But how do you get that moving and growing?
One of the examples Jay Levinson cites is about a local restaurant owner wanted to boost his sales so he set about figuring out who else his customers patronize. He soon discovered that he had some customers who went to beauty salons fairly regularly so he sent gift certificates to local beauty salon owners for 2 free dinners. The owners ate, loved it, talked about it, and as a result the restaurant owners reservation list was completely full all for the price of a couple free meals.
How can you get that same result using social media? Well it takes time but it can be done even more effectively than when trying to figure it out offline where people don’t post profiles telling you all about themselves. Just by scanning your communities friends, groups, products they like etc, you can gain an insight into who their onlineinfluencers are. We’ve talked about using comments to build a benefits and features list and if you’re using a social commenting system like
I don’t mean in a Fatal Attraction kind of way I mean in a look-at-where-else-they-comment sort of way. If you find that many of your users, community, members, etc also read and comment on another blog you can discern that there is a correlation there and viola you now have your beauty salon (figuratively speaking). Give that blogger / business owner some of your stuff for free and ask them to do a review on it. This review of course now can reach many more people than your local salon. It can be stumbled,dugg , saved to delicious, tweeted, fed out over FaceBook, emailed, etc. It can spread to thousands of people just moments after it’s published.
By identifying and learning more about your community you can also figure out what “boxes” they fit into. Lawyer, Doctor, Mother, Author, Realtor, Father, etc. Then use the same method to wooinfluencers in that area with free stuff.
If you find yourself to be in the position of being one of those influencers who is approached then take a page out of Chris Brogans guide book. Disclose, disclose, disclose. Chris has given us insight into everything from
This, much like using guest posts, is a great way to add credibility and value to your product. It gets more eyes and more diverse voices talking about you and gives you and your product more credibility and face value.
This is the part where I talk about Me and You. Examples given will also get linked from the Guerrilla Social Media Marketing Resource page so that’s inbound links all around!
Me: I’m going to break the mold here and tell you how this worked on me. PCMech was given one of the new Flip Mino HD‘s to play with and I was so impressed with the video and audio I went to buy one from my local BestBuy. They were out of stock and have been every week since, so this week I ordered one online! Free exposure for them and at least one new customer in me.
You: Have you ever been influenced by a review or a sponsored post? Have you ever used this type of tactic to gain business and exposure? Whether it worked or not I’d love to hear about it in the comments. Post links, wax poetic and tell us a story.
When done right by targeting the correct communities and influences this is a great way to spread the word of your company, gainun-biased reviews, and engage in a whole new community.
Thank you for reading,
Josh “Shua” Peters
This is part of a year long project about taking offline guerrilla marketing ideas / tactics and applying them to social media marketing. If you enjoyed this post and would like to host one of the Guerrilla Social Media Marketing series on your blog please email me shua (at) shuaism.com. To easily follow the series please subscribe to my feed via RSS or Email.
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