Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Class 15 Agenda: WOM As Media Channel?

Learning Objective(s):
  • To understand how WOM fits as part of a larger media plan
  • To consider the pros and cons of WOM as a “media channel”

Readings for This Class:

o Chapter 6: Word-of-Mouth Storytelling. Dave Balter & John Butman. 2005. Pages 115-133. (Bb)

o Suggested Reading: Firm-Created Word-of-Mouth Communication: A Field-Based Quasi-Experiment. David Godes & Dina Mayzlin. 2004. HBS Marketing Research Papers No. 04-03. http://ssrn.com/abstract_id=569361 (Bb)

o Suggested Reading: Quantifying the Ripple: Word-of-Mouth and Advertising Effectiveness. John E. Hogan, Katherine N. Lemon, & Barak Libai. 2004. Journal of Advertising Research, (September), 271-280. (Bb)

o Suggested Reading: Grapevine: Chapter 5: The Myth of the Influentials. Dave Balter & John Butman. Pages 91-111. (Bb)


  • Guest Speaker: Dave Balter, CEO, BzzAgent, Inc.


  • Guest Speaker: Dave Balter, CEO, BzzAgent, Inc. (aka, BzzAgent Dave)
    • Bio: CEO Dave Balter founded BzzAgent in 2002. Since that time, his company has provided word-of-mouth media services for dozens of Fortune 500 companies and has been featured in The New York Times Sunday Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist and on National Public Radio.
    • A co-founder and current board member of The Word of Mouth Marketing Association, Balter is an international speaker on the topic of word-of-mouth marketing. He has presented for corporations, associations and non-profit groups throughout the U.S., Europe and Asia. He co-authored Grapevine: The New Art of Word-of-Mouth Marketing, which has become one of the industry's most recognized business titles.
    • Dubbed a "serial entrepreneur" by The Boston Globe, Balter built and sold two promotional agencies prior to forming BzzAgent. He was named to the "40 Under 40" list by The Boston Business Journal in 2006 as well as by Advertising Specialty Institute in 2001. Women's Wear Daily named him one of the "Top 7 Individuals Changing the Face of Beauty" in 2001.
    • His commitment to corporate transparency has resulted in five innovative blogs, which were profiled in an extensive Inc. Magazine feature and later earned an Award of Excellence from the Society of New Communications research. Balter earned a B.A. in Psychology from Skidmore College and aspires to build the world's largest rock garden.

To Do (for next class):

· Readings

o Sales Pitch Society II. Kate Kaye. 2006. Pages 1-42. (Bb)

o Suggested Reading: Live Buzz Marketing. Justin Foxton. 2006. Pages 24-46. (CM)

o Suggested Reading: To Tell Or Not To Tell? Assessing the Practical Effects of Disclosure for Word-of-Mouth Marketing Agents and Their Conversational Partners. Walter J. Carl. 2006. Pages 1-34. (Bb)

o Suggested Reading: Stealth Marketing: How To Reach Consumers Surreptitiously. Andrew M. Kaikati and Jack G. Kaikati. 2004. California Management Review, 46(4), pp. 6-22. (Bb)


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