Word-of-mouth marketing has always been an influential tool that can significantly shape the perception of a product or service. However, it should be remembered that it is a double-edged sword - it can both help us and harm us - especially in the Internet age.

Every one of us has probably had the opportunity to discover the power of gossip. As we well know, it can both help and create a lot of bad blood. One thing is for sure - gossip is an excellent information medium, regardless of whether that information is true. We have been using word-of-mouth marketing for a long time. Even before it was officially called that way, we recommended people or products to each other, or the other way around - we listened to others’ experiences before choosing an offer. We issue recommendations based on our impressions and experiences interacting with a given person or product.

Word-of-mouth marketing and customer experience

How does word-of-mouth marketing translate into business, in particular into sales? It’s worth noting that the recommendations we give others are inextricably linked to our positive customer experience. If we feel that we were well and competently served in a shop, we won’t only be happy to return there, but we’ll recommend shopping there - or recommend a specific salesperson - to our friends. The same is the case when our shopping experience is negative - we share our dissatisfaction with others. We point to elements that we didn’t like in the service we used, in the product we purchased, or in the customer service we encountered during the purchase or the complaint process.

Therefore, as a salesperson, take care of your customers’ purchase experience. In this area, the industry you work in is not relevant. Regardless of whether you offer a product/service, whether you sell directly to the consumer, or whether your customers are companies - there’s always a person on the other side who can influence whether you sell more or less in the future.

It’s worth quoting the so-called 3/11 rule - almost every unsatisfied customer will share their experience with an average of eleven other people, and each of them with a few more. But it also works the other way round - each satisfied consumer will gladly share their positive experience with, on average, three people. It’s easy to see why one dissatisfied buyer can cause dozens of current and potential customers to lose trust in you. However, a satisfied customer is very likely to make a purchase again and inform others about their satisfying purchase experience. In addition, they’ll approach any future missteps on your part with much greater understanding, remembering their previous positive experiences.

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