Encouraging Word-Of-Mouth Marketing with Promotional Gifts & Giveaways
Definition of Word of Mouth (WOM) Marketing and Advertising
Product arrival, unboxing, and use. As soon as the customer sees, touches, and applies the item to their planned needs, they know quickly how they feel about it. If mail order, did it come on time? Was it broken or intact? Was the packaging sub-par, no-frills, or delightful? What is the perceived quality vs cost and expectation? Does it solve the problem it was intended for?
When a consumer receives impeccable service or has an experience that was better than expected, it is a natural reaction to want to share it. On the same note, when a consumer receives less than excellent service and is unhappy with a product or service, they are also going to want to share it.
One happy customer who felt that their experience with your company was worth sharing with others can lead to dozens of new customers. On the same note, one unhappy customer can turn away dozens of potential customers.
Unboxing videos, reviews of free or purchased products by social media influencers, social media posts and tags by consumers, links to product detail pages shared person to person via text, messaging apps and email, and customer reviews on consumer websites.
Technology has made it even easier for consumers to share their experiences. Texting, social media, and online review sites make it easy for people to tell friends and others in your area about experiences with a company. Think about your product, how it’s packaged, and what extras it comes with, and put yourself in the shoes of your customer. What would make you so happy with what you bought that you’ll share a photo, video, and praise on social media? What would inspire you to text a link to the company website to a friend or business associate?
Advantages of Word-of-Mouth Marketing
Trust in Your Brand
As previously mentioned, people trust their family, friends, and co-workers. Their word is credible, and if a product or service worked for a friend or family member, the consumer is likely to choose it for themselves.
There is no direct cost for word-of-mouth marketing. However, to create great word of mouth marketing, you need to provide the customer with an experience worth sharing, which comes with costs such as training great employees, offering rewards, and maintaining your business.
Effective Brand Amplification
Although the results of word of mouth can be hard to track, if your business makes it a priority to deliver unexpected value, the referrals will continue to come. Top techniques to track online brand amplification include social listening with web tools, tracking social media engagement signals such as likes, shares, follows, and tags, and monitoring reviews and ratings on your own website, review websites, and major retailers like Amazon. Make sure your customer service and account reps ask new customers how they heard about you. Monitor the success of your customer referral program.
How to Create Buzz with Promotional Gifts
How can your business get customers to talk? Go above the normal customer service expectations. Reward them, surprise them, and excite them! You can trigger an increase in word-of-mouth marketing from customers by spicing up your marketing mix with promotional products, corporate gifts, bonus swag, and branded merch.
Create Thank You & Welcome Packages for Customers
Thanking or welcoming new customers for signing up for your product or services is a great way to generate emotion and make your customers feel appreciated. This is a great way to develop stronger customer relationships and to get people to talk about your company to friends. Your welcome package or thank-you package should include a note or card, as well as a small gift. Your gift could be anything from a small wrapped chocolate bar to a logo pen or a custom mug. Take the time to think of a creative gift with impeccable packaging. If you delight your customer enough, they may take a photo or video and share it on social media.
Offer Bonus Gifts with Purchases
Giving customers something in addition to what they purchased is a great way to provide them with added value. If your business is a retail location, try packaging purchases in custom reusable shopping totes. Not only do tote bags generate a lot of impressions for your brand, bags are also an item that the customer can keep, reuse and show people. For surprise bonus gifts, pick an item that ties in well with what your business does– if you’re a bookstore try bookmarks, if you’re a bank or financial advisor try an adhesive phone wallet or piggy bank.
Host a Prize Giveaway Contest on Social Media
Contests are exciting and people love prize giveaways! If you host a contest, make sure that it is easy to enter so that customers feel that entering is worth their time. To increase the amount of social sharing, host your contest on a social media platform and make “sharing” your page, or simply watching your vlog part of the entry requirement. Make the contest prize a higher ticket item like an expensive travel bag or a power bank.
Create a Referral Program with Reward Prizes
Create a referral program and offer a reward to people who refer friends. Make sure they only get the prize if the referral becomes a customer. Possible prizes could be custom travel mugs, headphones or umbrellas.
Not feeling inspired yet? Check out even more great referral gift ideas.
Remember to make sure that these efforts are in addition to keeping your other advertising promises. Promotional products and custom corporate gifts can help boost the customer’s overall experience and excitement about your business, but excellent service still needs to be a top priority!