word-of-mouth marketing

8 Word-of-Mouth Marketing Tactics to Leverage Ecommerce Sales

5 Minute Read

Shared information is very powerful, especially if you trust the source. Word-of-mouth marketing is a very important way to promote your brand, access your target market and build trust through recommendations.

The introduction of social media has changed word-of-mouth somewhat. Rather than relying on the possibility that a customer will recommend your brand to a friend, marketers are going out of their way to seed and encourage.

Rightfully so, it is extremely cost-effective and remains one of the most efficient ways to spread awareness. In fact 92% of customers say that they trust the recommendation of a friend of family member.

This article will discuss the most effective ways to increase your word-of-mouth marketing. Don’t forget to let us know if you have any other suggestions.

Social media presence

Whichever industry your brand belongs to, there is a social media channel that will work for you. The goal is to create a hub for fans to check out your latest news, updates and projects.

The main thing to remember when encouraging word-of-mouth marketing is to boost engagement and create fresh, shareable content. I’ll speak more on this below.

Social media is great because it breaks down the formalities between customer and brand. Take advantage of this, the human personality behind your brand should shine. Post regularly, respond to comments and make an effort to notice the people who are sharing your brand on their pages.

word-of-mouth marketing

Lush have a zero-spend policy on advertising – crazy right? Well, Lush have proven that they can massively increase their word-of-mouth marketing with social media alone. They are great at understanding their customer personas. Lush post content that reflects their brand values, knowing that it will resonate with customers. They are transparent, honest and true to their value… a sentiment that is mirrored in their brick-and-mortar stores also.

Content marketing

Nobody wants to share dull content. In a saturated environment, brands are having to step-up their content game if they are to separate themselves from the rest of their industry.

Your aim is to become recognised as a thought leader in your industry. Content marketing expert Joe Pulizzi explains how all companies should be acting as media companies. Maintain a deep understanding and dominance over the culture, trends and news of your industry.

You want to be an outlet for updates and promotions. Valuable content gives people a reason to follow your account and share your brand name. Prove to your audience that you have a finger on the industries pulse and they will contribute to the word-of-mouth marketing of your brand.

word-of-mouth marketing

Hit the topics that you know your audience will be eager to speak about. Good content is about providing value for your audience in the long-run. Remember that quality content is an investment, do not view it as disposable.

Customer reviews

In the modern world, I would personally find it difficult to buy from a new brand without searching reviews first. I look at the word of others and make my mind up from there.

Online reviews can be the maker or breaker of a product and play a very important role in your word-of-mouth marketing. Positive feedback can be quickly and easily noticed… giving a short ‘thank you’ goes a long way for customer satisfaction. If someone goes out of their way to hype-up your product, it is good to show a little recognition.

It is equally important however to focus on the negatives. One negative review can start a flurry of criticism, so it is important to stay on top. There have been many instances were a poor brand review has been transformed into a marketing success. Let your customers know that you are listening to them and publicly prove that you care about their problems – you might just win a few people over.

word-of-mouth marketing

Reward customer loyalty

One of the simplest ways to encourage word-of-mouth marketing is to reward the customers that are loyal to your brand.

Letting your repeat purchasers know that you value their custom is very powerful. The aim is to make your customers feel rewarded, whilst also encouraging them to make more purchases. A great way to execute a rewards system is through your mail list:

  • Offer discount codes or free shipping to repeating customers
  • Implement a referral system where more email sign-ups creates perks for the referrer
  • Send out small gifts to customers who buy from your site often
word-of-mouth marketing

A great examples of encouraging and rewarding loyalty comes from the early days of Uber. These guys perfected word-of-mouth marketing by rewarding new and existing customer who referred friends.

Influencer marketing

What better way to drum-up conversation amongst your target audience than to get an influencer plugging your brand?

Influencer marketing is a great word-of-mouth marketing tactic. It allows your content to be seen by a large audience in your customer demographic. There has been controversy surrounding the effectiveness of influencer marketing recently, so pick your tactics carefully. Just because the account is huge, does not necessarily mean that the result will follow.

word-of-mouth marketing

Micro-influencers are a great way to increase your word-of-mouth marketing. They are typically perceived as more authentic because their following is a little smaller. They usually have a higher engagement rating with their following because they dedicate more time to interact. Micro-influencer are also a little easier on the marketing budget.


Shopcast is a brand-new social shopping tool. It transforms your ecommerce site into an interactive platform, where friends can chat whilst they shop and influencers can broadcast Live Shopping trips.

word-of-mouth marketing

The tool was designed to help brands increase their word-of-mouth marketing, massively increasing the interaction that you have with your customers. You can get an account for free today.

User-generated content

In the rise of influencer marketing comes the continued emergence of user-generated content. Getting your customers to include your products in their social posts may seem like a long-shot, but there are a few tactics that you can implement to encourage this word-of-mouth marketing:

  • Create branded hashtags
  • Make it obvious that you post UGC
  • Competitions and giveaways
  • Make your brand cool and people will want to associate with it
word-of-mouth marketing

ASOS are a leading ecommerce retailer with an Instagram account full of user-generated content. They also use their staff to post ‘Fit Pics’ and ‘OOTD’ pictures in order to inspire their customers.

User experience (UX)

Throwing all your efforts into word-of-mouth marketing tactics is pretty useless if you don’t have a user-experience that people love. Crafting a successful UX isn’t easy work, although extremely beneficial to word-of-mouth marketing when the correct tools are used.

According to Smart Insights, 38% of shoppers will leave a site if they find it unattractive. As ecommerce progresses, brands have learnt that keeping their UX clean-cut and simple is the most effective way to encourage sales. Shoppers need to find products easily, access detailed information, compare their product options and finish with a quick checkout process.

word-of-mouth marketing

Implementing Personalisation tactics can play an important role in this experience. Targeting your customers based off their previous buying habits is very important to improving their shopping journey. The following methods have been proven to increase conversions:

  • Product recommendations
  • Social proofing
  • Urgency messaging
  • Cart-abandonment messaging

These tactics will help to establish a meaningful relationship between brand and shoppers; this loyalty is key for word-of-mouth marketing.

Word-of-mouth marketing; final word…

In a time where everyone has a platform to share their voice, being on the right side of word-of-mouth marketing is very important.

People love being ahead of the trend, so use their voice to expand your audience. You won’t become a viral success with every post, so stay consistent with your marketing efforts… with a good product you will eventually break through the noise.

Keep a close eye on what your customers are saying about you online, there’s a fine line between a mistake and a success.

Check out Shopcast and let us know if you have any questions.

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