I know we've heard it a thousand times already; WOM is the oldest form of advertizing, but only recently has it become so important. We've all seen the statistics about how WOM is the most popular way people hear about products and services, and just how cluttered "natural" advertizing has become. After seeing all the presentations today, and seeing how each and everyone was successful, it makes me wonder why don't more companies do it?
And it's not like WOM is only for one or two industries. Yeah, it would be hard to create a campaign on scotch tape (or something as mundane as that), but with a bit of creativity almost anything can happen. It was cool to see the presentations today, and how much each product or service differed from the other ones. No matter how different they were though, each one was a success. Matchstick campaigned for wine, M80 for a TV show, Church of the Customer for a Discovery Network, BzzAgent for a hand held game, and Brains on Fire for anti-smoking. The diversity in products in just those alone proves WOM can be successfull in any field. When we were doing our interview with Joe Muran from M80, he brought up this exact point. Yeah he's kind of biased about word of mouth because that's how he makes a living, but he honestly believes all it takes is some creativity for any campaign to work. One thing he mentioned was spreading WOM for a soap product (this was all hypothetical). What's so interesting about soap to take about? Well really nothing. But all you need to do is think a bit and what would get people talking. He mentioned spreading viral movie clips online of a girl and a guy in the shower, and not being overly pornographic, but sexy enough to garner someone's attention. Next thing you know people are talking and wondering what the point of the clip is, and eventually they'll learn it's a campaign for soap. (And now that I think of it, seems exactly the same thing Carl's Jr. did with having Paris Hilton practically naked, and while all your attention is on her, they place one of their burgers in her hand).
But back to my original point. Companies need to start taking advantage of the WOM phenomena before it gets as mainstream as TV ads. Maybe it's just the fact that some companies don't even think about using WOM campaigns, or even know they exist at all. With so many successes and case studies that could be presented, it really makes me wonder why more companies don't use them. I find it hard to believe that companies havn't seen the numbers, and havn't realized that WOM is where most consumers get their information or recommendations. At least marketing and advertizing firms should take interest. We see these companies like Matchstick and BzzAgent having so much success, so why shouldn't an ad agency open their own WOM department? Who knows, maybe there are a bunch of answers for these questions I'm bringing up. I guess it's easy for me to say all this since I'm studying the topic now, when three weeks ago I didn't even know what WOM stood for. But still, I'm not in the business to makes things sell, and spread word on certain products. I know if I was, a WOM campaign would be one of the first things I look into. -->
Tags: WOM word of mouth Word-of-Mouth Marketing buzz marketing viral marketing marketing communication