The most effective business advertising is word-of-mouth advertising, there has never been any disagreement in the business or marketing world –right?
That’s why direct selling is so dramatically successful as a method of marketing every imaginable product and service, and why direct selling is such a great business in which to be. As a direct salesperson conversationally telling another person why you like a particular product, you are much more convincing advertisement than any TV commercial or magazine ad.
The remarkable persuasiveness of your personal approval of a product, service or business is what word-of-mouth advertising is all about. Much to the disappointment of ad agencies, such word-of-mouth advertising cannot be bought. But you, as a businessperson, can put this powerful type of advertising power to work for your business.
Because you are privileged to be on friendly, personal terms with your customers, you can enlist their help in promoting you, your services or your business. You can in fact turn your customers into a personal advertising department. All you need to do is master the right way to solicit for their help.
Develop Personal Relations of Trusts
If you learn how to correctly ask for their help, your customers will passionately go to work promoting your business. This will help advertise your services, lead you to scores of new sales, and give you all the valuable benefits of word-of-mouth advertising. There are two types:
1. Your customer actually becomes an advertising or sales agent and tells others about you, your business, or your products and the services you provide.
2. Your customer gives you referrals of people who may be good prospects and allows you to use their name as an endorsement and icebreaker.
Either kind can be tremendously valuable in multiplying your customer list.
The most vital thing to remember is that this kind of help cannot be purchased from your customers. It must never seem like you are offering a bribe in exchange for a list of names. As a rule, people will not “sell” their friends to you. Offering an “inducement” also might raise doubts about the quality of your services. If they are as good as you say they are, why should you bribe people for their recommendations?
Remember two very significant things about human nature: first, people typically enjoy telling others about your products they like. Second, people like to be valued and appreciated. One way they get appreciated is by being helpful to others.
Bottom-line, offer an incentive for helping without appearing to be paying for it.
(APPRECIATION – babies cry for it and grown men died for it!)
In this way, you’re thanking your customers, not bribing them. They’ll be delighted, won’t feel guilty or weird, and will be more disposed the next time you ask.
The next time you call on that customer you should remember to again thank them for their help. Report to them on the reactions of the prospects they suggested. Let the person you know you did call on them, that Mrs. Jones did become a customer and purchased such and such, and that Mrs. Walters was interested but wished to purchase at a later date.
In many cases, after reporting these results, you can obtain a couple of additional prospects from them.
REMEMBER – Marketing is the lifeblood of your business. Your greatest asset in sales is your pipeline of prospective customers or sales. And there is no superior way to maintain that pipeline, converting prospects to customers, than by using the power of word-of-mouth advertising …with recommendations from your current, satisfied customers. Put this power to work now and watch your sales and profits grow.