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Word of Mouth Marketing: How Smart Companies Get People Talking Hardcover – November 1, 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 193 customer reviews

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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 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Back Cover

"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

"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

"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

"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, The Keller Fay Group, authors of The Influentials

"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, Director, Kimberly-Clark

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

"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

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

"The coolest book on the hottest topic in marketing and communication. Andy tells it all and tells it like it really is. The 5Ts 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

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Kaplan Business; illustrated edition edition (November 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1419593331
  • ISBN-13: 978-1419593338
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (193 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #697,200 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

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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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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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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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is an extremely easy read written in conversational style. The tone of the author reminds me of Seth Godin. If you love Seth's books, you will definitely love this book too.

The gist of this book centres around 5Ts - Talker, Topic, Tools, Taking Part, Tracking:

Talker - Find out who is talking about you and who you want talking about you.

Topic - Create something worth talking about - it could be product feature, sales promotion, connection with a charity cause or an exceptional shopping experience.

Tool - Make it VERY EASY for talker to talk about you and help spread the word. You can do this by reminding people to share to friends, including "Share to a friend" buttons in website, using email signature, giving out samples etc.

Taking Part - You have to take part in the conversation. If the word of mouth put you in a negative light - reverse it by listening, improving and telling people about the effort you put into that.

Tracking - Monitor word of mouth online and offline so that you know who is talking and what they are talking about you.

I think this is a good book - it has good examples and some useful tips (e.g. incorporating network effect to your product promotion so that people benefit from sharing). At the same time, I took 2 stars off because:

(1) One of pillars of the book is that you need to be a company worth talking about, which essentially means creating remarkable products and services (Purple Cow). This is always easier said than done and the book does not provide much guidance as to how this can be done.

(2) The book gets quite repetitive along the way. The author just uses different words to express the same ideas over and over again.

All in all, still a must-read for people interested in WOM marketing!
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