-->Ok, so after NULAX17 reflected about CGM being a media for WOM marketing much like TV, it got me thinking about this blog. Its clear that WOM is spread through blogs as people voice thier opinions, both praises and criticisms, about anything and everything you can think of. Just look at the power of WOM from the blog about the Kryptonite Lock that is easily hacked with a Bic pen. Blogs are a definite tool to spread WOM just like CGM.
Now here is the delimma, and I pose this for discussion...if WOM is most ethical when not forced upon people (and we've seen countless companies that have failed at WOM campaigns because of these sneaky tactics) then what does it say about blogs where people are forced to contribute? Now I'm not saying that as students in this WOM and Viral Marketing class that we've been told that we will fail the course if we dont participate in blogs, but we are expected to contribute a minimum about of posts and comments. I'm wondering how ethical this was....On one hand it is apart of an academic course and helps us as students to really feel the effects that blogging has, especially when it relates to spreading WOM. It is also a great source for "outsiders" of the class to see what we've been up to all semester. On the other hand, if WOM is not supposed to be forced, does this make it ok. And in a way, the WOM spread through this blog is amplified because we have incentives to participate.
My own personal opinion is that realizing and recognizing that this amplified WOM is taking place given the circumstance in which we are blogging makes it less unethical than if we were to keep secret about how this blog relates to our participation grades. Inherently, by keeping this blog transparent, and the terms in which we blog, we can save ourselves from being persecuted for unethical WOM....
Tags: WOM word of mouth Word-of-Mouth Marketing buzz marketing viral marketing marketing communication