A good word-of-mouth marketing strategy has the opportunity to deliver something that resonates with your brand and customers, remains evergreen, and grows more valuable over time.
There are certainly plenty of options available to marketers when developing a digital marketing strategy, but none of these options are as powerful and effective as word-of-mouth. Happy customers that love your product or service enough and are willing to spread the word about your brand are much more likely to be repeat customers.
It goes beyond that, though.
For example, take referral marketing. The referees – or buyers that brand ambassadors influence – tend to be more loyal, long-term customers. In turn, as these customers strap in for the long haul, many of them will also take up the cause and become an advocate for your company.
The more awareness you can generate about your brand, the more success and growth you will continue to realize in this self-perpetuating cycle.
But what’s one thing you MUST have in order to scale?
The Role of Technology in Your Word-of-Mouth Marketing Strategy
The recent growth of modern word-of-mouth programs — and the various point solutions that currently comprise it — have also created a lot of confusion around what businesses really need to grow effective word-of-mouth marketing initiatives, like affiliate, referral, influencer, and partner marketing programs.
Do you need four different software solutions to manage each variation? Or can one platform do the trick?
The future of post-conversion engagement is a single, flexible platform that delivers all the tools companies need to manage and optimize a variety of campaigns.
There are a lot of reasons why this makes sense, but two primary benefits are data consistency and ease-of-use. When you have five different systems trying to do five different things, the data doesn’t always make sense.
Additionally, with multiple solutions, you can’t ever be sure that all of them will seamlessly integrate with the other systems you rely on. With one platform, those concerns are eradicated.
So, what capabilities does this single platform need to have to handle every aspect of post-conversion engagement? Here are the six most important features to look for in a technology provider:
1. Identification and Segmentation
For a referral, affiliate, influencer, or partner campaign to work, it has to be easy to identify the people that fit into each of those categories and organize them by key characteristics.
2. Turnkey Engagement
Now that you know who to leverage for specific campaigns, the next key capability is being able to engage the right people in the right places with the right messaging and incentives.
3. Seamless Tracking
In today’s world, the customer journey isn’t contained to a few channels and one device. Instead, our path to purchase follows a convoluted path that bounces between desktop, mobile, and numerous different channels. For any software platform to deliver value, it must be able to seamlessly track all of this activity.
4. Simple Management
The whole point of automation is to eliminate the repetitive, mundane tasks so that business leaders can spend their time focusing on strategy, analysis, and optimization. The benefit of software like Ambassador is that it can serve as your database of record — allowing you to track, measure, and manage affiliates, customers, fans, followers, and advocates in one place.
5. Reward Delivery
If there’s one thing customers, affiliates, influencers, and partners hate, it’s being promised a reward for some kind of action and having to wait weeks or months to receive it. It’s even worse if your technology limits how you can issue those rewards. A truly effective platform should give you the power to reward customers quickly and in a variety of ways — through vouchers, loyalty points, cash, gift cards, etc.
6. Optimization Functionality
Like most effective marketing tactics, post-conversion engagement isn’t a “set it and forget it” strategy. To achieve the biggest results, you need to be able to dive into the analytics, look at the reporting, make decisions based on intelligent information, and optimize based on that. If your platform can’t provide that, you’re missing out on a huge piece of the puzzle.
In digital marketing, where the landscape is changing at the drop of a dime, it’s important for marketers to lean on proven strategies – like word-of-mouth marketing – rather than wasting time on the latest fad that might negatively impact your bottom line and eat up resources.
Ultimately, we’re heading toward a future where every aspect of customer engagement — reviews, recommendations, rewards, referrals, etc. — will be managed under one umbrella and through one system.