It struck me recently that I've assumed something about new media marketing that I had never really expressed. That realization was that I assume word of mouth marketing is the most effective form of promotion. Everything I advocate when it comes to new media marketing is based on the premise that word of mouth marketing works and is truly effective. The entire content as the new promotion strategy series I did had word of mouth marketing at its very foundation.
Here's why I say this: word of mouth marketing is people telling others about something. That's the core of new media marketing and a content promotion strategy. You want to use content (see here for definition) that people will find valuable and then pass along. The new media tools simply let this happen exponentially faster than the old word of mouth marketing. It's still word of mouth...just at hyper speed.
Two weeks ago Ketchum released the findings of a new study that verifies this. Here are two interesting quotes from the study:
"Advice from family and friends is the No. 1 source that consumers turn to when making a variety of decisions – ranging from purchasing consumer electronics to planning a vacation."
"Communicators rank their companies’ own Web sites as the most effective way to share corporate news or issue a response to a crisis, but consumers rank company Web sites sixth and seventh among places they turn to for corporate news and crisis response, respectively."What we see here is verification that people telling other people about things is the best promotional tool and that despite any company's high regard for its own website, the people are looking many other places first (including search engines as the study later shows.) This isn't really new news, it's just the latest in a line of validating information along these lines. Kind of makes me glad I'm not doing traditional marketing anymore.