So you want to generate more word of mouth, but don't want to be pushy or "in your face" about it? Here's how...

Everyone knows that the best form of advertising is word of mouth. The reason this is true is because the marketing message is coming, not from a "greedy company" but from a trusted friend, family member or advisor.

Its one thing to see a movie trailer with the deep-voiced narrator intoning how exciting and adventurous the movie is; but it's another thing altogether when your best friend calls you up raving, "You have GOT to see this movie, it's SO GOOD!"

Here are 3 tips to encourage and inspire people to talk about you and your business.

Tip 1 - Be exceptional

This is the most important thing you can do to encourage word of mouth and it should be your primary focus if you want to leverage your existing customers.

Having an exceptional product or service (like the iPhone) or providing an exceptional customer experience (like Virgin Atlantic) or providing exceptional results in a specific area will naturally get people talking about you.

Tip 2 - Give away free samples or trials

If you want to attract new prospects and get them talking about you right away, try giving away free samples or trials of your product or service.

Just like taking a new car out for a test drive gets you literally "behind the wheel" and feeling what it's like to drive the car, so too will giving your customers a taste get them feeling what it is like to do business with you.

Tip 3 - Provide mechanisms for easy sharing

Social networking sites have got this one nailed. When you sign up for a social networking site like Facebook, MySpace or Twitter, you are encouraged to "invite your friends". And they make it very easy for you to say yes.

You can make it easy for your customers and prospects to tell others by leveraging similar "invite a friend" technologies, including referral cards with your freebies or by creating your very own social networking site where your customers can congregate together.

Author's Bio: 

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From Paul Keetch - Co-Author of Make My Marketing Work

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