Sometimes, marketing can be a risky investment, especially true if you find that you try all the famous tools and strategies, but receive no results. Luckily, one of the most effective marketing strategies is practically free – and that’s word of mouth marketing.Before making a decision to buy a product or service, people typically ask a family member or a friend for suggestions. They don’t rely on commercials. Word of mouth is the fastest way for people to get information. What is even more important, we perceive our friends’ and family’s experiences as the most trustworthy source of information.Within the last few years, marketers have focused mostly on boosting the number of social media fans instead of connecting with them. Having a few hundred satisfied fans who love your products is far more effective than thousands who’ve only “liked” your website to win something.WHY A WORD OF MOUTH MARKETING STRATEGY IS SO POWERFULWord of mouth marketing is the oldest and the most original social media platform. It is the most valuable form of marketing proven to drive the highest sales for companies. For this reason alone, no marketer shoulder overlook it.Whether you are choosing a restaurant, smartphone or a hand cream, you will often highly value a suggestion from a close friend, neighbor or a co-worker. Why? Because traditional marketing strategies such as TV and newspaper ads aren’t as trustworthy as the actual people in your community.Despite the numerous media platforms available nowadays, verbal communication about a certain product or brand is the best way to expand your business. Once a person passes the word about a certain product to their friends, they are much more likely to become loyal fans and regular consumers.A word of mouth marketing strategy provides a long-term benefit for your business. When a consumer purchase is based on a prior referral, they often buy more in comparison with consumers who find products through conventional marketing. These consumers usually stick with your products or brand longer than others.Moreover, when referred consumers communicate with their friends about your products and services, the value of the first referral spreads even more. Naturally, if these consumers are satisfied with your products, building a high quality brand should be your next business step.Building your brand may be somewhat challenging if you are developing a small business. Brand building may prove demanding even if you have a franchise, especially if your competitors have already established their spot. Luckily, a good word of mouth marketing strategy can help consumers develop a positive feeling about your brand really quickly.Once you establish your brand, a word of mouth, marketing strategy becomes a valuable method to expand your business and increase your profits. In comparison with the cost of a consistent conventional marketing campaign, which involves newspapers, radio and television, referrals are almost free.BUILD UP YOUR WORD OF MOUTH MARKETING METHODYou may have a great product to sell, but if consumers don’t know about it, you can’t turn it into profit. It is always a good idea to keep track of what people are saying about your products online, but there is a lot more to it than just creating your Twitter and Facebook profiles. Effective and successful word of mouth marketing requires serious thinking and lots of hard work.Social platforms are the easiest way to get in direct communication with your target consumers. Due to the fact that social media has rapidly grown in the past few years, nowadays over seventy percent of all internet users use social media.Almost forty percent of social media users, have shared brand-promoting content. This includes sharing information about a certain brand or product on their Facebook wall. Such content sharing is highly valuable since it inspires a great mass of people to talk about this brand or product, and eventually become consumers.TARGET THE OPINION-MAKERSThe success of the word of mouth marketing method can increase even more if you take the time to win over the opinion-makers in your community. Opinion-makers are people who can influence a mass of people and shape the creation of opinions. This includes public figures, trendsetters, bloggers and journalists. They are the active voice in a community – and often speak out and give advice to others.Since you want to reach as many people as possible, opinion-makers can be of great benefit for your business. They can help you build your brand successfully through word of mouth marketing. Therefore, it’s a good idea to make a list of the opinion-makers that appeal to your targeted audience and include them when promoting your brand.MAKE AN IMPACT – BECOME A THOUGHT LEADEREngaging the opinion-makers to promote your brand is great, but becoming a thought influencer is even better. You know what makes your business unique, so go ahead and tell people about it. Get the word of mouth process rolling by communicating with your audience.You can reach your potential consumers through social media platforms, blogs or even at a conference. Choose the medium that supports your ideas best and establish a strategy to increase your influence in your community. Increasing your personal social influence will help you promote your brand more successfully.WORD OF MOUTH IS THE KEY MARKETING STRATEGYWord of mouth should be a key aspect of your marketing strategy. Many companies use a word of mouth marketing strategy, encouraging their happy customers to promote their products. It is crucial to provide consumers with a great product or service, so that they happily share their experience with others.If consumers are satisfied with the quality of your products and services, they will be willing to share their experience with their close ones. Their family, friends, co-workers and even random people that read their tweets or blog posts, or ask them for advice, will certainly consider their suggestions.A successful word of mouth marketing method promotes your business and convinces consumers to buy your products. By buying your products, people should be convinced that they are joining special ranks, and that your brand products or services will define their identity in a more positive way.Whether planned or not, a word of mouth marketing strategy is well worth the effort. It is still considered the most powerful and influential type of marketing communication. If you put your energy into this effective marketing method, your company can become a beneficiary of word of mouth and build a successful brand. Remember that your brand is only as good as consumers claim it is.