The Best Word of Mouth Strategy

Set up for success 

A series of articles working as a basic checklist with no jargon which ensures your business has the tools and knowledge you need to get started, or revitalise a business and become equipped to grow.

Emotive vs Rational appeals

People love anything which makes them feel. Marketing has, for a long time now, used emotive appeals rather than rational appeals. This is because though logical, we humans aren’t always logical. 

Rational appeals are less likely to attract attention but can work in some situations. Close to the purchase decision stage for products and services requiring high-involvement decision making, rational appeals may work. Much of the time though, emotional appeals (positive and negative) will get better results.

The Strategy

What do you want your customers to feel when they think of your brand? A hotel may want their customers to feel comforted- Hilton Doubletree hotels certainly did.

Warm Cookies

Upon check in, guests of the hotel are given a warmed up chocolate chip cookie [1] as part of their welcome. Across their hotels they give out 75,000 per day. Of that, 34% tell their friends. That’s about 25,000 word of mouth (WOM) impressions and referrals a day. A cookie only costs 15p. 

If you give customers a reason to have a strong emotive response to your brand and something unique to remember you by, you can increase the WOM surrounding your business.

Ideas for your business

If you’ve ever been to an event fair, you’ve probably collected tons of free pens, notebooks and bottle openers. Though useful, these ideas have been so overdone they’re not likely to make an impression. Here are a few interesting ideas for different industries (no affiliate links- these are products we honestly suggest):

  • B2B Financial sector
    • Laser pointer [2] £2.30 each when purchasing 250 

You’re likely to be meeting many people who are used to presenting a ton, so a laser pointer is a useful item likely to be used regularly. Zoom and other video conferencing software means many people aren’t presenting traditionally right now, but this is still a fun and useful item which will be kept around, and will get more use as business gets back to normal again. 

Person Presenting

  • Holiday sector
    • Neon sunglasses [3] £1.14 each when purchasing 300

This is one for anybody dealing with vacations in the sun. Sunglasses are not only useful- sometimes they can be a real lifesaver! Something like this will let your customers know you’re always there for them.

  • Business consultancy sector
    • Mint card [4] £0.62 each when purchasing 250

Simple business cards are overdone, however if you still need something small to give out with your contact details, this could be the thing for you. Handy, practical, and minty-fresh. If you want to be remembered and thought of fondly, this is a great option.

Other WOM Strategies

If you can’t think of a unique offering to your customers to increase word of mouth, you’re not alone. Other strategies include producing and distributing a creative campaign designed to evoke strong emotive responses from your audience and get them talking about your brand - think Marmite’s love it or hate it marketing.

Marmite Jars

Encouraging your followers to create content to do with your brand will also spread brand awareness and get people talking about your brand by engaging with them. 

For example, if you were a manufacturing company known for producing strong, reliable products you could run an Instagram competition where followers are encouraged to try and destroy your products, where the winner is whoever damages it the most. Even if the product were destroyed, it would still reinforce how strong your products are, especially if it took a lot of effort, plus it created conversation around your brand.

Another great method to increase WOM is by collecting reviews from previous clients. This is not only going to aid your public image and make you seem more trustworthy, but is also a form of word of mouth marketing itself - electronic word of mouth (eWOM). This is hugely important because the reach of eWOM is much larger than normal word of mouth, and many people rely on public reviews to advise their purchase decisions.

All in all, providing a great product or service backed up with fantastic customer care will make your customers naturally refer your brand to their own network. 

Learn more about web development and starting a business with our other articles, and if you think this article could help anyone in your following, you can share it on your social media pages.






Liberty Revah-Opacki


Marketing executive at Royal Wares.