Two types of word of mouth marketing that occur are natural and enhanced.  Natural word of mouth marketing occurs when consumers take it upon themselves to spread information about your product or service out of experience and enhanced is when your company interacts to influence or create word of mouth marketing.  Enhanced word of mouth marketing occurs when steps are taken to enhance existing marketing efforts or to create new marketing efforts.

Natural word of mouth marketing can be viewed as reactive, for example if someone receives excellent service or is satisfied with a product they purchased and leave a positive review of it online.  It is a natural reaction and many online vendors request buyers to share their experiences for the benefit of other consumers.

Enhanced word of mouth marketing can be viewed as proactive.  This includes creating mediums where consumers can comment on products or services or finding other ways to start conversations about your company.

Now, if you are starting communication about your company, it is wise to always give a positive twist on it.  Instead of asking “what do you think about this product?” try asking “what do you like best about this product?”  By starting on a positive note, you are more likely to reap positive results.  And positive results are what you are seeking in the first place, correct?

If you encounter negative natural word of mouth marketing, don’t be afraid to confront it.  Negativity attracts more negativity, but if you can incorporate positivity, you can control your image.  This brings to mind a local bar that hosts BINGO night.  When we first started playing BINGO there, when someone won, everyone else would groan.  We decided to put a twist on this and applaud every winner.  The applauding caught on and with very little encouragement, those who used to groan at the winners now applaud.

This same methodology can be brought to your company.  If we can convince BINGO losers to applaud those who beat them at the game, surely a company can convince their customers to applaud their product or service even when not always 100% what they wanted.  Perhaps an item is on backorder.  How about suggesting a complementary item at a discount?  Perhaps your customer’s tee shirts are slightly delayed.  Why not suggest branded logo drawstring bags or water bottles at a discount.  Find ways to put a positive spin on negative times so you will receive naturally positive word of mouth marketing.

What are ways your company can use enhanced marketing to influence your natural word of mouth marketing?