Saturday, November 26, 2016

Creating positive word-of-mouth is the way forward for brands

Brands desire to carve out an unblemished reputation in a highly competitive market environment: No matter how successful a company is, there is one thing that it invariably never tires of focusing on –‘making the right noises’ in the marketplace’. Indeed, brands irrespective of whether they are passing through a highly profitable run or a ‘not so happening time’ business-wise, are keen to know what their existing or prospective customers/clients – are saying about them in public domain. The fiercely competitive nature of the market prompts firms to leave nothing to chance. The cut-throat competition across diverse sectors has made it ‘mandatory’ for brands to consistently devise ways and means to inculcate a ‘feel-good feeling’ about the products and services they offer.

However, one has to understand that positive word-of-mouth does not happen overnight. It is built on years of how a firm carries out its day-to-day operations. In a market replete with intense competition, brands find it exceedingly tough to win new clients/customers. The market demands necessitate a brand to offer a ‘product or service differentiator’, and every brand leaves no stone unturned to attain that. No positive word-of-mouth can be created sans a vibrant work culture – brands are increasingly conscious about facilitating a positive work atmosphere, where employees contribute to the growth of the company as ‘members of the family’ and not as ‘employees’.

One has to realize that positive word-of-mouth probably did not have so much significance say ten, twenty years back. But in the current market scenario, it has emerged as a powerful tool for brands to achieve future growth. Like building a brand takes years of toil, similarly ensuring an untarnished brand reputation is far from being a piece of cake.

Employees joining and leaving an organization is a regular phenomenon. According to a US-based survey, brands are fast realizing the importance of what their existing and former employees are saying about them in public domain, which can go a long way in building or destroying a brand. Gone are those days when positive word-of-mouth was not given any importance but not anymore. It’s an all-out war out there – where every brand is pushing and shoving to garner every slice of the business.

A recent data released by social media software company Lithium showed how positive word-of-mouth is working wonders for brands, especially through various social media platforms. The data showed more than 50% purchase decisions are triggered by positive word-of-mouth, which only underpins the importance of brands having a positive market presence. It accentuates on how the ‘massive reach of word-of-mouth’ acts as a catalyst in swaying customers towards a particular brand.

Digital business solutions provider Huzzah Media carried out a survey, which revealed that positive word-of-mouth had a big say in generating revenues for corporate enterprises. The survey brought to the fore one thing – positive word-of-mouth will be instrumental in how business is done in the future.

It’s pretty clear that positive word-of-mouth is poised to be the biggest tool for brands going forward – even conventional ways of marketing a product/service through brochures, newspaper advertisements, workshops, seminars, roadshows will even struggle to compete with the ‘sheer power of positive word-of-mouth’. Negative word-of-mouth is the last thing brands want and companies are increasingly doing everything they can to be heard in the ‘right manner in the marketplace’. For sure, positive word-of-mouth is set for a long haul something no brand can ill-afford to ignore.
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