Encouraging the feeling of wanting something because our peers have it is a very important factor for brands. When companies create a product that is unique and anticipated, they know that people will talk about it, and this is a great way to spread the word and reach customers that they may not have done otherwise. This type of marketing is called word of mouth advertising, and this has had a huge part to play in the success of the Apple Watch.
Whether you typically choose to buy Apple products or not, it is highly likely that you know someone who owns an Apple Watch and is only too happy to share information about its features with you. Then, if somebody were to ask you if you know anything about Apple Watches, you might pass these details on. As long as the information you’ve been given and are sharing is positive, this is great advertising for the Apple Watch that the company themselves haven’t had to pay for – so you can see why it’s so desirable.
Here, we look at what word of mouth advertising is, why it is so important, and how it has contributed to the Apple Watch’s success since its initial launch.
What is word of mouth advertising?
Word of mouth advertising comes from people talking about something naturally, either face-to-face, via social media, or through messaging and phone calls. It isn’t something that’s necessarily planned, but is just included in conversation because the person is impressed, happy, or excited about it. Through sharing information and recommendations with friends, family, and colleagues, a conversation can be created around different brands, and when this is done in a positive way, the brand can really benefit.
Why is word of mouth advertising important?
When we hear information or opinions from people we know, we trust them to tell us the truth as they have nothing to gain from lying. This is different to advertisements, and sometimes even social media influencer accounts, who benefit from encouraging people to buy a product or service. A report by Nielsen from 2012 states that 92% of people trust word of mouth marketing over paid advertising, with reviews being the second most trusted source, and this is true across the world. So no matter if people are hearing great things on company websites, through banners, or via email, what their friends and family say will always sway their opinion the most.
How can brands harness word of mouth advertising?
With any kind of organic marketing, it can be difficult for brands to harness it and use it to their advantage. However, word of mouth marketing can benefit brands who put their customers first and aim to create a solid network of ambassadors, rather than focus on gaining high numbers of followers that may not be as committed to their product or service.
To achieve this, a brand must create a passion among its fans which they will share with their family and friends, who may then share it with their family and friends, and so on. This can result in people hearing about, or wanting to try, a brand that they may have never considered using before. By creating a product or service that is worth talking about or sharing, brands can get in front of individuals that their paid marketing efforts would never have reached.
It doesn’t only have to be your product or service that sparks word of mouth advertising, it can be marketing campaigns that you’re running too. This isn’t necessarily as successful as people having truthful, natural conversations about your brand, but if you produce content that is worth talking about, this can certainly help. This is when it becomes integral to think outside the box, as there are so many other brands producing great campaigns that you’ll need to contend with, you need to ensure that yours really stands out from the crowd.
Another thing to consider is your customer service, as this is one thing that people love to talk about. If you give your customers 100%, you can be sure that they’ll pass on positive comments to their family and friends. With this in mind, ensure that your website user experience is great, that anyone who deals with customers directly is knowledgeable and friendly, and that you always deliver everything that you promise. If you can provide all of this, it’s very likely that you’ll start to see the benefits of word of mouth advertising before too long.
You might also like to try encouraging word of mouth advertising using your own social media channels. The best way to do this is to offer an incentive to people for sharing their photos or videos of your product. This is then content that you can share yourself, which will gain more trust from potential customers than heavily branded social media content will.
How does Apple encourage word of mouth advertising?
We don’t need to tell you that Apple have found a lot of their success thanks to word of mouth marketing – but how do they do it? Firstly, they always produce products that are unique and have features that are bound to get people talking. Through creating items that offer things their competitors don’t, Apple can ensure that they are always the brand that people are bringing up in conversation. It also helps that most of their products boast features that appeal to different groups of people, so there’s something for everyone to talk about.
Another way that Apple encourage word of mouth marketing is by making pre-announcements in the lead-up to new products being released. It’s now at the point where people expect and look forward to these announcements, and excitement builds as people try to guess which new features the brand might have come up with. This means that there’s chatter about the product before it’s even been released, which is a great way to build anticipation and spark conversation among their target audience.
These pre-announcements also stop people from getting bored while they wait for the next release, or forgetting that Apple are working on something new. By keeping this hype going, Apple can ensure that they’re always on the forefront of consumer’s minds when it comes to conversations around new trends and advances in technology.
Apple are known to create products that look just as great as they perform, and it’s for this reason that so many people want to own them and will queue for hours to be the first to get their hands on them. This is another great way to build word of mouth marketing, as people seek to find information from those who already own the item and will happily trust their judgement over anything that Apple themselves might say.
The fact that Apple’s core audience are tech-savvy is also an advantage to them when it comes to word of mouth marketing, as this is a group who enjoys talking about technology and will happily share things that make them happy on social media. Through posting on their social channels, whether this be YouTube reviews or a simple photo on an Instagram story, people are sharing Apple products and the details about them with others who will like the idea of owning the product themselves.
Word of mouth advertising and the Apple Watch
With Apple’s past success, and its impressive rise in word of mouth advertising, it’s not surprising that the Apple Watch was a massive hit when it was launched in 2015. Offering good quality, lots of cool features, and a great design, this was a product that everybody wanted – and that everyone was talking about! Over the past few years, Apple have released new generations of the watch which have been just as sought after as the first design, and each one has offered more than the last.
Why is the Apple Watch so popular?
Some of the Apple Watch’s top benefits are that it is simple to navigate, you can open apps on it quickly and easily, and it offers its users a streamlined experience that can make life that little bit easier. In a world where everyone wants everything immediately, the Apple Watch thrives due to its ability to serve its wearer information and notifications at the flick of a wrist, which is far more efficient than having to pick up and unlock a mobile device.
Users can personalise their watch face to show them the information that is most important to them, easily access the date and time, see how many steps they’ve taken that day, and even control their music – there is very little that this watch can’t do!
Fitness, wellbeing, and the Apple Watch
Fitness and wellbeing are two words that we hear a lot of these days, and younger generations in particular are starting to realise how important it is to stay healthy in both body and mind. Therefore, the role that the Apple Watch can play in both of these factors is definitely a talking point among the company’s target audience, and a great foundation for word of mouth marketing.
People say that having an Apple Watch is like having a personal trainer that constantly follows you around, but not in an annoying way. In fact, most wearers say that they find that the watch’s fitness related notifications motivate them to move a little bit more in order to hit their daily goals. Are you hitting 5000 steps? Have you burnt your target number of calories? Not only will the Apple Watch remind you to stand up and move if you’ve been stationary for too long, but it’ll also track your steps and workouts to show you exactly what you’ve achieved. Some may think that the medals it offers as a reward will do little to encourage exercise, but more often than not they provide just enough praise to make the wearer feel positive about their accomplishment.
Not only can people work towards their own goals, but they can challenge their friends via the Apple Watch too. What better way to get people talking about a product than to ensure that it offers the opportunity to connect with each other? Due to being able to receive text, instant message, and social media notifications without picking up a phone, and being able to see where they rank amongst their peers when it comes to exercise, Apple Watch users can be connected in a way that they never have been before. So, if your friends have got one, you’re going to want one too!
Tracking exercise using the Apple Watch couldn’t be easier, it will even pick up on the fact that you’re exercising even if you don’t tell it that you are. You can select which exercise you’re doing from a long list so that it tracks your movements in accordance to the correct exercise, and it will give you stats at the end such as how many calories you’ve burnt and how many minutes you spent working out. This shows just how word of mouth advertising can occur in the gym. If one person can express how great their workout was and what they’ve achieved, others will want to have these stats for themselves too.
The Apple Watch also works to tackle the feelings of stress and anxiety that plague many people in its target market by providing an app that encourages steady breathing and focus. Not only is this helping people to reduce these negative feelings and overcome panicky reactions, but it also means that it’s likely to pop up in conversations about this topic. If someone tells their friend that their new watch is helping them to fight their anxiety, that friend is going to consider purchasing one of their own.
The future of the Apple Watch
The trick to successful word of mouth advertising is to make sure that people don’t stop talking about your product or what you might come up with next. Although the Apple Watch has only just had a makeover, it is anticipated that the 5th generation will have some features that people are sure to want to upgrade to.
There has been talk about the Apple Watch being able to efficiently track sleep without the help of third party apps, something which lots of consumers would like to see. However, there are concerns that the battery life would need working on in order for it to last through a day and night without being charged. Regardless of this, there is conversation happening around this topic, which just shows that despite the fact that people might need to wait a while until they can get their hands on a new and improved Apple Watch, they are still willing to keep it in the limelight so that it remains at the forefront of people’s minds.
With so many advantages associated with word of mouth advertising, and the success of the Apple Watch in support of this, it is easy to understand why organic conversation is such an important thing to consider alongside any marketing activity. Predominantly, if you provide a product or service that works well, has unique qualities, and gives your target audience something that they can’t get elsewhere, word of mouth marketing should happen naturally and you’ll see the benefits for yourself..