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Word of Mouth Marketing: How Smart Companies Get People Talking Paperback – April 30, 2012

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Editorial Reviews

Review

''I highly recommend this book because it is so practical, tactical, and hysterical.'' --Guy Kawasaki, author of Rules for Revolutionaries

''It's brief. It's elementary. It's obvious. But the truth often is. Read this book to relearn what you always knew just in time for it to change your business life.'' --Bob Garfield, co-host of NPR's On The Media

''No one knows word of mouth (the good, the bad, and the measurable) better than Andy Sernovitz.'' --Peter Fader, Professor, Wharton School of Business

''A quick, practical, and extremely useful guide to word of mouth marketing.'' --Emanuel Rosen, author of The Anatomy of Buzz

''This book is to Gladwell's The Tipping Point as engineering is to physics. If you want to understand the deep sociological theories behind interpersonal communication, this isn't the book for you. If you want to understand how to harness interpersonal communication to drive your business, then buy this book.'' --David Godes, Associate Professor, Harvard Business School

''Great book on WOM. Nicely written.'' --Jack Trout, author of Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind and The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing

''Word of mouth is the valuable currency in today's advertising-saturated world. Andy Sernovitz has written a book packed with ideas on how to do word of mouth marketing the right way.'' --Jackie Huba and Ben McConnell, authors of Creating Customer Evangelists

''Andy brings it together perfectly: the vision, the strategy, and the practical how-to. It's all here.'' --Geoff Ramsey, CEO, eMarketer

''It's an actionable guide for anyone looking to capture the power of word of mouth. Andy has written a book that shows just how simple it is to get people talking about your business. You should read this book and then tell a friend.'' --Brad Santeler, Kimberly-Clark

''A primer chock-full of great stories, tips, and exercises to make you a better word of mouth marketer, no matter what size company you work for. Read it, and you will increase your influence with your customers and make yourself more influential in your company.'' --Ed Keller and Jon Berry, authors of The Influentials

''It's easy to agree that word of mouth is important. But it's time to become students of how it works and why it is so valuable to our customers. Start or continue your journey by reading this book.'' --Bob Pearson, Dell

''Andy's approach is practical, affordable, and, best of all, ethical. Don't waste your money on mass marketing: Spend it on this book and start people talking.'' --Greg Stielstra, author of PyroMarketing

''The coolest book on the hottest topic in marketing and communication. Andy tells it all and tells it like it really is. The Five Ts are the best organizing framework for word of mouth I have seen yet. Use them and profit. No hype. No smoke and mirrors. No overblown promises.'' -- Don E. Schultz, Professor Emeritus-in-Service, Northwestern University

''There is no wasted word in this practical guide. Pure nuts-and-bolts how-to's for people who want to start implementing a word of mouth marketing program today. Other books cover the theory, but Andy gets to the actual action best.'' -- George Silverman, author of The Secrets of Word-of-Mouth Marketing

''Another must-read if you're at all interested in word of mouth marketing.'' --Mark Hughes, author of Buzzmarketing

''Andy Sernovitz's book will give all marketers a reason to talk. Sernovitz not only legitimizes word of mouth marketing, he provides THE road map to what drives it.'' ----MaryLee Sachs, Chairman, U.S., Hill & Knowlton

''As I read through Word of Mouth Marketing, I felt, more than anything else, relieved. Relieved that we finally have a marketing author who understands the simplicity (and complexity) of this business; who recognizes that honesty is the only workable policy for advertisers; and who see --You'll learn how to be that remarkable company people want to share with their friends.

''As I read through Word of Mouth Marketing, I felt, more than anything else, relieved. Relieved that we finally have a marketing author who understands the simplicity (and complexity) of this business; who recognizes that honesty is the only workable policy for advertisers; and who sees that in a flat, information-flooded world, nothing but the right product -- a product fashioned around your customers' needs -- will cut it. Sernovitz has managed to achieve a pretty rare twofer in providing a simple, tactical, how-to guide that anyone could use to improve their communications efforts, while simultaneously sketching out a whole new philosophy for marketers and advertisers everywhere. Oh, and the guy has fun anecdotes and a readable style too. Seriously, I know you're bored silly by all those marketing texts and I am too, but this one's worth your time.'' ----Jonah Bloom, Executive Editor, Advertising Age

From the Back Cover

You can have amazing word of mouth. This fun, practical, hands-on guide will teach you how.
   
What sparks the irrepressible enthusiasm of Apple, IKEA, Harley-Davidson, Southwest, Zappos, and Patagonia fans?
   
Why is everyone talking about a certain restaurant, car, band, or dry cleaner -- and why are other businesses and products ignored? Why do some products become huge successes without a penny of promotion -- and why do some multi-million-dollar advertising campaigns fail to get noticed?
    
In this book, word of mouth expert Andy Sernovitz will teach you exactly how you can create passionate, loyal fans that do your marketing for you, for free.
   
We're going to get specific: where to start, what to do, and how to make it successful. You'll learn how to use word of mouth to become more profitable, how to spend less on marketing, and how to make your customers happier.
   
You'll learn how to be that remarkable company people want to share with their friends.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Greenleaf Book Group Press (April 30, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9781608323661
  • ISBN-13: 978-1608323661
  • ASIN: 1608323668
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (186 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #442,159 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

146 of 150 people found the following review helpful By Dana on November 17, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I recently finished Andy Sernovitz's new book, "Word of Mouth Marketing: How Smart Companies Get People Talking". Actually, I finished it a while ago, but haven't had time to do a full blog review.

The book is a quick read - 4hrs total, give or take, and it's packed full not only of WOM theory and a bit of history, but also with some concrete ideas from real WOM marketers and a checklist or two to boot. I love checklists!

The really "shocking" thing about this book, is that it's not one of those "wow, wouldn't it be cool if our company could do that" like "Blue Ocean Strategy, but rather, a book about WHAT EVERY BUSINESS SHOULD ALREADY BE DOING WITH THEIR MARKETING. Seriously, let's look, at what the book tells me to do.

You need the Five Ts. Talkers, Topics, Tools, Taking Part and Tracking.

* Talkers: Find people who will talk about you

* Topics: Give people a reason to talk

* Tools: Help the message spread faster and farther

* Taking Part: Join the conversation

* Tracking: Measure and understand what people are saying

Andy has another tidbit that worth the price of the book (or a visit to his site). The Word of Mouth Marketing Manifesto:

1. Happy customers are your best advertising. Make people happy.

2. Marketing is easy: Earn the respect and recommendation of your customers. They will do your marketing for you, for free.

3. Ethics and good service come first.

4. UR the UE: You are the user experience (not what your ads say you are).

5. Negative word of mouth is an opportunity. Listen and learn.

6. People are already talking. Your only option is to join the conversation.

7. Be interesting or be invisible.

8.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Lindy Dreyer on April 21, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This book is exactly what it promises to be...a fun, practical, hands-on guide to the art of word of mouth (WOM) marketing. This book is about getting back to the basics and fueling your desire to build a remarkable organization. The quick summary of what's in the book...

* 3 Reasons People Talk About You
* 4 Rules of Word of Mouth Marketing
* 5 Ts of Word of Mouth Marketing
* 6 Big Ideas: Deep Stuff That Changes Marketing Forever

The first 59 pages of the book give a thorough, yet concise, overview of the concepts of WOM marketing. For me, the really juicy stuff began on page 61--the HOW-TO section. (That's the pragmatist in me.) Page after page, I found myself writing down ideas, usually a spin-off of something Andy's seen or done...which is a considerable amount. Going back through my notes, many of these ideas are things we can do right away along with things we should have always been doing, but somehow got off track. This book is like a brainstorming guide...it helps you focus on the WOM concepts that matter most.

Word of warning...if you're looking for detailed, data-driven analysis of WOM, this is not your book. Most of the negative reviews on Amazon criticized the book for being too "obvious" or "simple." I'd argue that it's the simple and obvious ideas that make this book so powerful, not just for marketing and PR professionals, but for anyone in your organization who interacts with your customers and prospects.

BONUS: One of the 5 Ts of Word of Mouth is TOPIC. People often latch onto the most unexpected topics and we need to have the courage to run with it. Andy uses the example of RedEnvelope. Their unexpected topic? Beautiful gift packaging. I've personally ordered from RedEnvelope...it was a gift for my mom.
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63 of 77 people found the following review helpful By Ala "Prompter" on October 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I've just gotten into WOM marketing and so I assumed that my knowledge on the subject is limited. After reading this book, however, I came to think that I could be a marketing guru as well. The ideas described in this book could be summarized on three pages and still those pages would not be worth reading! Rules such as: make your message interesting or make it short or make it easy to remember are obvious for all those who are capable to think logically. Others (e.g. Chinese banquet example) are simply ridiculous!
I expected to learn a lot from this book. I learned nothing new. Plus, the book appear to contradict all the rules he lists: it could definitely be shorter and more interesting!
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca Melvin on October 2, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I was really torn between giving this book three or four stars. What inclined me toward four was that I didn't get a straight run through it, but instead was three quarters of the way through and had to put it aside for a week-which is a long time to put reading aside and then pick up again without it losing a great deal of its momentum. So, I went with the higher scoring in the belief that I would have had a more positive experience with the material if it had not been for a circumstance beyond the author's control.

That being said, you may still be wondering what I found lacking to keep it from getting five stars. First of all, I don't hand five stars out like candy (and I wish a lot of other reviewers would follow that lead, as it seems as though there are an over-abundance of five stars over at Amazon). I feel that a five star rating is for the exceptional. A four star is for the good. Three stars for the nominal, with two and one stars relegated to the bad and really stinky. I steer away from half stars as that smacks of indecision (and would require me having to add those images to my library and they are difficult to come by).

I rate this book at four stars because it is good. It is not exceptional. If you're purchasing as marketing advice, it will provide you with enough to know that you need to buy more books by other authors that go into a good deal more detail. If you've already purchased a couple of marketing books, it will reinforce what you've already read and give you a good pep talk to keep you motivated. It is not going to enlighten you to anything new (unless it's your first purchase of marketing material-in which case see point above about now knowing you need to buy more books).
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