Book Review of George Silverman's Word-of-Mouth Marketing and 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing

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  • Topic: Word of mouth, Microsoft, Windows Server 2008
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  • Published : November 27, 2010
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Media Strategy & Planning
George Silverman’s The Secrets of Word-of-Mouth Marketing

(What drew you to the book?)

Other than office expenses and a few media buys the advertising agency that I work for runs solely on word of mouth marketing campaigns. With more and more money being pulled away from advertising budgets our ad campaigns rely 100% on the word of mouth model. Positive or negative word-of-mouth does not matter as long as the word is out all that matters is that our product gets talked about. George Silverman’s The Secrets of Word-of-Mouth Marketing introduces how to run a successful word of mouth campaign and help consumers choose your product over the competitors.

(Give a brief “book jacket” synopsis of your chosen book that would motivate anyone in the Graduate School in Communications to make it their #1 reading choice.)

“Decision Easifcation” is a term that George Silverman uses to describe how your product can become the #1 choice for consumers. He explains how to make your product the one consumers choose by helping narrow down the decision making for them. To simplify the customers’ decisions, you have to understand the ever-changing mind­sets of your customers, you have to know exactly what will interest them, appeal to them, persuade them, and motivate them. “Your sales and market share make quantum leaps when you give cus­tomers exactly the information they need, from sources they find credible, in the form and sequence that makes them most receptive, in the most persuasive, compelling manner.” (Silverman, 2001) George Silverman suggests that if you simplify their choices they decide on your product much faster and more often.

(In what way does George Silverman’s The Secrets of Word-of-Mouth Marketing connect with your reading of 22 Immutable Laws? )

The Secrets of Word-of-Mouth Marketing connected with 22 Immutable Laws by emphasizing how brands such as FedEx and Nordstrom both share an important marketing trait which is a good story. Stories such as a lady returning a tire to Nordstroms and getting a refund without a receipt were instrumental in becoming a major brand. What made the story so interesting was that Nordstroms did not sell tires. Stories and service combine to make word-of-mouth campaigns and brand launches successful.

(In what way does George Silverman’s The Secrets of Word-of-Mouth Marketing disconnects with your reading of 22 Immutable Laws?)

When it comes to marketing budgets both 22 Immutable Laws & The Secrets of Word-of-Mouth Marketing agree that most marketers confuse brand building with brand maintenance and that fresh, creative, and flashy will not get your brand noticed. “We live in an overcommunicated society, where each of us gets hit with hundreds of commercial messages daily.” (Ries, pg.14) The two books differ on how to get your brand received by the masses. George Silverman described the internet as being built only for word of mouth and was developed by scientists using the tool to share data and communicate. People interact with each other and spread messages about products every single moment of the day. 22 Immutable Laws is extra clear about this in the section called the 11 Laws of Internet Branding, “The Law of Internet Advertising” rule #6 that the Internet will be the first medium that will not be dominated by advertising because it is interactive. The user is in charge and can easily navigate past ads, block pop-ups, & mute flash ads. 22 Immutable Laws reminds us that “Junk Mail” is the popular term for direct-mail advertising (Ries, pg.175)

George Silverman believes that interactivity is advertising. He uses Microsoft as an example of companies that completely run on word of mouth. The Heroes Happen Here campaign was a collabertation between Avalanche Comics Entertainment, Seagate, and OPTs Ideas won Best Product Launch for Microsoft Windows Server 2008, Visual Studio 2008 and SQL Server 2008. The creative work by Opts Ideas was...
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