Published on March 5, 2014
The Sport and Leisure Industry Marketing: Session 3
Advertising & Word of Mouth: Different, but not mutually exclusive
Word of Mouth • A message passed from person to person about a product or service. • People trust their friends. • People don’t necessarily trust the adverts they see. • Adverts give us the positive aspects of a product or service. • Friends give us the truth about a product or service. • People are friends with others who have similar interests. • Word of mouth targets a higher proportion of potential customers than advertising. • Word of mouth can occur as the result an experience with your product or service or following an experience with your promotion.
Where does word of mouth take place? 7% Online Offline 93%
Word of Mouth: How and Why? • It’s not a case of ‘Word of Mouth Vs Advertising’. • Word of mouth and the spread of your message needs a helping hand. It needs something to start it off. • The starter for the spread of your message could be a customers engagement with your product or could be a potential customers engagement with your promotion. An advert (in whatever form that may take) can act as that start point. • The dream scenario is your message being spread without the need for any form of advert. • You want your message to be CONTAGIOUS and to go VIRAL. • You want word of mouth to do that for you. But you need to give it the start it requires to get going.
Word of Mouth: How and Why? • Things go viral and become contagious amongst social groups regularly. • But why? • It’s safe to say that a lot of the things that have gone viral have done so with little planning and have got lucky. Most of them aren’t even advertisements. • Taking a scientific look at why things have gone viral previously can help us to give us the best chance of helping our message go viral. • This gives us a 6 stage framework to mould our message by for maximum chance of contagion. • It is relevant for B to C and B to B marketing (Something which will become clearer when we look at relationship marketing). • The framework can be applied to products and services and was developed by looking at the factors that made online articles, videos, pictures etc. go viral over the past few years.
The six factors effecting a messages virality…
S ocial Currency T riggers E motion P ublic P ractical Value S tories
S ocial Currency • Status through association. • People like to look smart, clever, funny, cool and in-the-know and they like to be seen as ‘ahead of the curve’ and at the forefront of new movements and phenomena. • They will talk about and spread the message of anything that makes them feel like it will portray them positively to others. • People want to talk about things that make them look good, not bad. • If your product/service or it’s message can do those things there’s a good chance people who’ve engaged with it will pass it on.
T riggers • People talk about things that are on the top of their mind. • If you can link your product to something they are likely to think about regularly then they are more likely to think of your product and to share things regarding your product. • Strawberries and… • Have a break, have a… • Triggers offer us the answer for the Cheerios Vs Disneyworld question. Which has the greater number of triggers?
E motion • When we care, we share. • High arousal emotions – like excitement, anger and awe fire people up. • This activation, in turn, drives them to share.
P ublic • A message which is built to show is built to grow. • People often imitate others. Or at least others who we perceive to have qualities or an appearance that we desire. • But you can’t imitate what you can’t observe. • Making the behaviors associated with your product public enables those around the behavior to be influenced. • How have Apple made using their products overtly social?
P ractical Value • News you can use. • People care about those close to them and as such will share information that has practical value. • Whether that is rgarding saving money, saving time or making them healthier. • If your product/service, or just its message from your advert/promotion includes practical value it vastly increases the chances that the information will be shared. • If your product is attached to that piece of information then your product or your message will be shared along with it.
S tories • Stories are much more memorable than facts and figures about a product. (We saw this last week. ‘How’ and ‘What’ are often tedious. ‘Why’ tells a story.) • Stories are like Trojan horses. • If your message or advert tells a good story, people will want to tell others about it. • When they tell someone the story, your product/service/brand/message comes along for the ride and is shared as well. • Remember, people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it! • Sell your story and your product comes along for the ride when people share the story.
Examples of Virality • So let’s look at some examples of how others have created messages that have gone viral. • These aren’t necessarily adverts or marketing messages but they are practical examples of how the six factors of contagion actually allow things to go viral. • Some of these hit lucky, but with our STEPPS framework we can be more systematic about creating our message and hopefully replicate their virality. • We’ll look at 7 examples of successful messages which have been shared and passed on by word of mouth. For each one we’ll asses which factor or factors of the STEPPS model affected the success of each example.
Apple P ublic
Griff Dogs – Please Don’t Tell S ocial Currency
LinkedIn – Most popular 5% / 10% S ocial Currency
Push to add Drama http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=316AzLYfAzw E motion S tories
Friday: The Worst Song Ever? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kfVsfOSbJY0 T riggers
How Animals Eat Their Food http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qnydFmqHuVo S ocial Currency E motion
Uncle Drew http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8DnKOc6FISU S ocial Currency E motion S tories
Volkswagen, the force and the remote starter http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R55e-uHQna0 E motion S tories
Practical Use of STEPPS for Word of Mouth So, yes, you need, to a certain extent, to be creative to exploit theses six factors… but… …by boiling down why things go viral to the six factors we’ve discussed today it gives even those of us who aren’t creative the chance to create something that goes viral, hopefully carrying your products message along with it.
Your task for next week Pick an organisation and a product or service from within the Sport and Leisure Industry that interest you. If you would like to to you create your own fictional organisation and product you may. Then plan a promotion for your product that looks to make the product and/or its message go viral. You can do this in any advertising format you wish i.e video, poster, picture, etc. (If your plan is to create a video then create a storyboard so you can visualise your idea.) You don’t actually have to make the advertisment, just plan it and be prepared to talk about it, its ability to be contagious and why next week. The simpler, the better! Why run 50 adverts or display 50 different posters if one (or zero!) will do a better job of sparking others into spreading it my word of mouth (doing your job as a marketer for you!). Give your message the best chance of being contagious and going viral by employing as many of the factors from the STEPPS model as possible.
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