Part four of Volusion’s blog series on Word of Mouth Marketing focuses on ways to help others share your message more easily. You’ll learn how the basics of using social media and basic social sharing tools for each channel.
In this installment of our Word of Mouth Marketing series, we get to talk about the fun element – providing tools that make it easier to share your message with others. As a recap, we’ve already covered the essentials of WOM, how to educate others on your products, and ways to identify/engage thought leaders. Now, we bring this together in discussing various platforms for your information to be spread.
Naturally, your website is a good starting place. Make sure you have customer reviews enabled and you incorporate customer quotes and feedback into your content.
But as we all know, sharing is caring, so you need to invest in helping people share your information. This means that you need to provide open communication avenues. The solution? Social media channels. Take a look at some basic tenets in getting started with your social strategy:
- It’s not about you. Make sure you’re providing content that is useful to your fans and followers. Allow for discussions to take place. Remember, you’re “friends” with these people and you have to take the time to nourish friendships.
- Be sure to integrate. Allow your supporters to keep in touch through multiple channels. Thus, if you have a new YouTube video, be sure to post it to your Facebook account and Tweet about it. If you post a new photo to Facebook, make sure to pin it to a relevant board on your Pinterest account. There are tons of possibilities here.
- Social media takes effort. Simply putting up a couple of pages isn’t going to cut it. You have to invest time in working on relationships, adding quality content and growing your channel. If you don’t have the energy to devote, think twice about entering the game.
Within each channel, there are a few things you can do to encourage people to share across the social space. Check these out:
- Twitter: Encourage your followers to retweet (RT) your posts. A retweet basically means that a follower liked your content enough to share it with their followers (a great way to build exposure). Thus, make sure your tweets are worthy of being shared. Also, be sure to watch the number of characters used so others don’t have to modify your message to fit in 140 characters.
- Facebook: Ask open-ended questions in your status updates and respond to interesting answers. Facilitate comments on your photo albums and videos. Allow people to upload fan photos and engage with your events. All of these options encourage people to participate and interact, which are key pillars in wanting to share.
- YouTube: Allow the option for others to share and embed your videos. This is a great way to speed up the sharing of information. It’s also a good idea to allow comments and for video responses. YouTube is one of the highest searched websites in the world, so allowing people to engage here can really build your reputation.
While these tools aren’t necessarily rocket science, they’re very important to the success of your WOM strategy by removing hurdles from information sharing. The biggest takeaway here is this: the more steps it takes to share your message, the less sharing you’ll see.
-Matt Winn, Marketing Associate