Tell-a-friend marketing, also known as word-of-mouth advertising, has been recognized as a worthwhile marketing tool for thousands of years. This way of spreading the news of your product or service is simply direct communication between people about your product, service, brand, or event. Hopefully, the initiator of this conversation has had some experience with that product. Following are some suggestions on how to make this marketing method help you build your list geometrically.
As a viral marketing method, tell-a-friend is a two (or more) way street. In the internet marketing realm, here’s how it works: I give you a free ebook, and you like it so much that you tell your friends or subscribers. They then pass the product on to their subscribers and friends. It’s a geometric progression that before long has your eBook in the hands of hundreds of readers and internet marketers. And of course you have put your website and affiliate links in that ebook. So not only does it spread your eBook around, but simultaneously it spreads your website and your affiliate links around too.
But a couple of caveats: Many people will have a lot of things to say about your product — some good and some bad. And some marketers will try to influence what is being said about their product. This might not necessarily be a bad thing but it could be a bit risky if the product is not up to par in the first place.
Many tell-a-friend software products come in the form of a script which you place on your squeeze page where you offer a freebie to your visitors. Once the visitor hits the “submit” button, he is taken to a page where can he enters his name, e-mail address, along with the names and email addresses of two or three or more friends and family members. When he then hits the appropriate “send” button, the same offer is sent to his friends or family members much like an e-mail with an attachment.
When the recipient receives the e-mail, he will see the sender’s name as someone he knows and trusts and therefore won’t consider it spam. The tell-a-friend script practically removes the chances of that email being blocked because the names and emails are supplied by the known (by the recipient) sender. Some may consider this process a little sneaky, but it is very effective.
Here’s another caveat: The referred “friend” is not an opt-in subscriber to your list. If you make that assumption you can get into a lot of spam trouble. Instead, in the first message he receives, invite him to join your list voluntarily. If he doesn’t take that action, do not email him again.
This kind of viral marketing will work if three conditions are met:
1. The original visitor derives a benefit from it.
2. The receiver benefits from it
3. Sending the product is easy to accomplish.
Let’s see how this works.
Condition 1: When someone opts into your form, he receives the free product. He is then redirected to another page where he joins your sales force — he is given the option to refer a minimum of 3 friends (more is offered).
Condition 2: The receivers will probably opt in and receive the gift as well. Very probably, they too will refer three or more people to the gift. The whole process, and your list, grows like a snowball.
Condition 3: The tell-a-friend script makes the process work automatically for you without spamming anyone.
When all three of these conditions are met, the campaign becomes viral — mission accomplished!
You can locate both free and not-so-free scripts by looking for “tell-a-friend script” with your search engine.
Here is a viral marketing technique that just works! It works because the message is heard from a friend who liked it and not from some paid pitchman who will sell anything for a buck. If your customers are happy with your product or service, then using this techniques gives them a way to share that joy with their friends. Help your customers to tell each other and your product will sell itself.