When you see a great new movie, how many people do you tell? Why do you tell them? What’s your intent? Most likely you want them to see it too. No other type of advertising is more powerful than word of mouth. Your friend probably didn’t pay attention at all to the Hollywood hype about the movie, but they know you as a friend and respect your judgment.
If the show’s terrible the negative vibe will spread even faster than the positive. Statistics say that: “Negative word of mouth influences future patronage up to five times more than the person who experienced the problem first-hand…meaning that the original problem description is continually embellished as it passes from person to person.” (Verde Group and the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania).
If you’ve been involved in marketing for some time, or even if you are just getting started, you probably know the result of negative word of mouth advertising too. Why do we tend to tell people a lot more about bad experiences we’ve had with people, businesses, or services? We all hate confrontation don’t we? It seems that some actually must like confrontation – they continue to be jerks over and over again. These business owners must have no idea about the effects negative word or mouth advertising can and will have on their business plan.
If I’m unhappy with a product, service, or employee of a company, I’m going to whatever I can to get things resolved. If they don’t make any changes or solve the problems, I’ll warn everyone I know to stay as far away from them as possible. My thought is that you never know the effects a bad product or unfriendly service may have on future business. Just like the smell of a stinky diaper, bad news spreads all over the place. You’d think someone would take it out to the trash sooner than later!
So, the point I’m trying to make is this: if you want your business to really prosper, to really get to a level you may have never dreamed of, be nice to people and follow the “golden rule!” It’s not really a new concept. Everyone likes friends; not many people like jerks. The effects of negative word of mouth advertising will have effects that we may never be able to track with our business.