This question seems quite easy to answer, word of mouth is by far the strongest form of advertising surely. After all you have a happy customer sending a qualified customer who is in the market for your products and services straight to your door at no cost to you. People telling people about your great service has to win hands down right? Well yes but without internet presence that reflects your standard of service or without information that is key to a customer making a decision to buy, or if you can’t be found via a Google search easily word of mouth can be useless. I mean there can’t be that many “Smith and Son’s” around can there?
The fact is in the 21st century, a business that is serious about making sure word of mouth recommendations don’t go to waste or to their competitors will ensure that they can be found when searched by name to serve their “Known Market” and be found when searched by service & geographical area to server their “Unknown Market.” We will talk more about these 2 different groups in the future, but for now imagine some one used your service, they remember your name (due to the brilliant relationship you built with them) but can’t quite remember your business name and don’t have your number to hand.
The first thing they will do is Google your service in your area and if you’re not there your competitors will be. Unknown to you this is when your “Known Market Customers” turn into your “Unknown Market Customers” but because your business information wasn’t in front of their face, you didn’t even know they where talking about you.
Imagine your past client remembers your name but doesn’t quite type your name right into the search & because you don’t have any decent presence online the brain that is Google steps in and asks your prospective customer “Did you mean: (The Name Of A Competitor)” and thinking your competitors similar sounding name is you and clicks on and doesn’t realise
your competitor isn’t you until they reach the point of order, (if they notice at all). Some companies even use the name of a competitor as a targeted keyword for their own SEO, which may appear unethical but is an effective way of mopping up your competitors misguided known market customers!
These two scenarios may seem far-fetched but they are just a couple of examples of how you can potentially loose recommendations if you’re not providing good information to the search engines. The new word of mouth is social media recommendations, combining a good social media presence with SEO and a content rich website we will make sure you never miss a recommendation again by building a good online profile for your brand or business. Ratings and reviews of your service can also go a long way in a customers decision to buy, negative word of mouth isn’t the publicity you want, but that’s a whole other blog!