Word of mouth: Who are your talkers?

32374545 In Andy Sernovitz's new book on Word of Mouth Marketing (and in his old book too) he talks about the 5 T's of Word of Mouth.  I thought it might be useful for us to dig into each of them over the next week or two.

If you've been wanting to get a bit more viral and work on your word of mouth efforts — you'll be able to use these posts as a guide to drafting a simple WOM marketing action plan.  (download the planning chart)

The first T is Talkers.  Talkers are people who spread the gospel about your product or service.  They're going to tell their friends, co-workers, and other people about you.

The trick is identifying who your talkers really are.  Most people assume it would naturally be their biggest, best customers.  But that's not always the case.  You need to think about your customers and who has a natural tendency to share their experiences with others.

One of the things I really found myself nodding at was when Andy debunked the myth that talkers had to be "influencers" ala Malcom Gladwell's theories in the Tipping Point.  Anyone can be a talker.  Ever had your hair cut?  Man, are those people plugged into what's going on.   Don't think movers and shakers — think natural talkers!

Who might be your talkers?  Don't take this list as gospel — but more of a jump start.

  • Employees
  • Vendors
  • Happy customers
  • Reporters
  • Bloggers
  • Social Networkers
  • Passive "free" customers (like the ones who subscribe to your e-newsletter)
  • Neighbors
  • Active networkers (they have to connect their peeps to someone!)

So what do you think….who are your talkers?

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3 comments on “Word of mouth: Who are your talkers?

  1. I am familiar with the book Word of Mouth Marketing, and I look forward to your reviewing the 5 T’s as outlined. Talkers — boy they can be just about anybody. Family, friends (and the friends and family of your friends and family). Your barber (hairdresser) as you mentioned; also your mechanic, gas station attendant (assuming you don’t go to a self serve), the mailman, your neighbors, colleagues, child care professionals, people from the gym you work out at … the list is endless really.

    It is good to stay in good graces with everyone for word of mouth is a very effective marketing tool. One bad review will spread faster than 10 good ones!

  2. Angie Nelson says:

    This is great advice. Sometimes your “talkers” are those you don’t even do business with. Never miss an opportunity to sell yourself, even if it ends up being second hand.

  3. Sleepless,

    You are very right…and in fact can go out one circle. Your talkers don’t even have to be people you’ve ever met.

    They certainly can be bloggers, evesdroppers, or even relatives of someone who has used your product or service. That’s what makes word of mouth both so powerful and so elusive.


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