Word of Mouth marketing has existed since the dawn of time.
If villagers liked their blacksmith, people talked about him/her throughout the region. Those in need of his specialist services, creating swords to strike a blowagainst the invaders, would travel from afar to obtain his particular brand of steel.
When a baker was found to be short-shifting the locals, he’d be run out of town eventually; but not before suffering a slow decline in sales due to everyone talking about his sneaky ways.
The power of stories when it comes to recognising those we want to do business with, vs those we should
steer clear of is not to be taken lightly; especially in the age of social media marketing.
But what happens if something goes wrong?
Where there’s smoke there's fire, right?
DON’T LOSE YOUR HEAD
Maybe it’s just a very disgruntled maiden, paid off by the king to undermine the truth. Look at what happened to Anne Boleyn. A few well-placed rumours circulated by Henry VIII or his loyal cronies cost
her her head. There are PR specialists, driving expensive cars on the strength of their ability to bury a negative story. These people may even earn more
than their counterparts, those paid to boost a good story.
It’s a clever skill and knowing how to bury or raise your ploys can mean the difference between the survival,
or the death of a career.
A mere whisper of wrongdoing, in this current age of #metoo and similar campaigns, is made even harder to manage by the sheer speed of a story breaking.
When it does, you need to be ready for it.
The only way to effectively do this, is to counter the bad with the good. A heavy dose of positive news will
often drown out the negative news. My business as a specialist publishing coach to non-fiction game changers and thought leaders is heavily reliant on my authors getting excellent reviews for their books.
Often a reader is unaware of just how powerful their thoughts can be. They may be a perfectionist that feels a FIVE-star rating is just too high, regardless of how much they thoroughly loved something.
On Amazon, positive reviews and five-star ratings can have a tremendous impact on sales and promotion - so it pays to get it right.
The actual written reviews are also just as relevant - and need to be meaningful, bright, and sincere.
THE POWER OF EDUCATION
Whether on Facebook, YouTube, Amazon or a host of other sites, one of the first things we tend to look at is the number of likes, reviews or brankings. Thumbs up vs thumbs down, in any language, is going to impact on our decision to 'stay and play' or wander off to find another something to engage us better.
Rule number one, therefore, is to TELL people that when they visit your site, page or channel, that you
need them to give you some thumbs up.
I’m continually reminding authors to ask their friends, fans, family and associates to post a review of their
Unfortunately, no one wants to be the first fan to put their neck on the line and say: ‘Yes this is ‘great’, so counter that by ensuring you have a few honest ‘plants’; a handful of people you have groomed to get their feedback.
These might be the friends, associates, beta readers, or test pilots. Get them on board from the start and nurture those relationships as well as you can.
My authors get highly regarded reviews for their books using a form, equipped with examples of what they would like their reviewers to say.
It effectively invites them to either use one of those examples or create a variation of one on the list.
This concept transcends publishing; and almost any industry situation can use the same idea. Most people
when asked to provide a testimonial struggle for what to write. "Does it sound good, genuine and actually reflect my feelings about the thing I'm being asked to review?"
They may genuinely want to help but will struggle with what to write for so long that it becomes an embarrassment for you both. It’s not always easy to coach a client about knowing the best moment to grab the winning line from a client. Helping a client with the use of a form and some example questions can allow your reviewers or endorsers back to the place in their minds where they feel the most positive about you and their experiences of your services.
“A MUST read”
"Couldn't Put it Down!"
3 Essential Testimonial Questions
1.)Can you describe what your ‘Life/Business/Sport was like before you started working with me/us?
This starts them thinking back to the beginning and benchmarking the process in their minds.
2.)If YOU could have done anything differently during this process, what might that have been?
Introspectiveness of their role in the journey can be difficult, but it's also crucial for allowing someone to give you a well-rounded review.
3.)What was it like for you when you first realised your ‘life/business/sport’ had taken a turn for the better?
The smile on the face moment - invoke the memory of how far they travelled with you. Ask for their words, note them down and even video their endorsement. But, if you want the real magic, hire a good copywriter to capture the perfect lines from their comments
to use on your social media, in your marketing and to share with others.
Finally, you need their permission to edit for brevity if required. Having permission gives you the right to use endorsement comments how and when you wish.
It’s up to you to manage the ones that matter most to your business.
Dixie Maria Carlton is a higly sought after international publishing coach, working with commited non-fiction authors wanting to wirte, self-publish and promote top quality books
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