Saturday, September 12, 2015

'Word of Mouth': The Predecessor of 'Going Viral'

By Roger V. Loria, Jr.

"Word of mouth" is a very interesting thing.  It can either spell "f-a-m-e" or "r-u-i-n" (depending on who's mouth is talking and who's ears are hearing).  Of course, a good word about someone is much better for a person's reputation.  The same goes for business.  No matter what we're selling, every business is in the business of service.  When a customer is served well, it makes a personal impact - and it's a personal impact that goes far beyond the doors of a store or the screen of a website.  
       The word that a customer spreads is far more persuasive to another potential customer than the most far-reaching of advertising media - and usually the most trustworthy.  It's unfiltered and beyond the control of marketing experts, copywriters and television producers.  In fact, it is often used by the aforementioned marketing experts, copywriters and television producers to compel a potential customer to become an actual customer. 
       Traditionally, the "word of mouth" form of building a reputation didn't occur like a wildfire, especially when we began our business over 100 years ago.  But over the decades, it gathered, accumulated, gained momentum and, has become the testimony of countless customers (i.e. 'my friend told me about this place, so here I am...').
       However, in this online age of "going viral" (the internet version of "word of mouth"), which can either spell "f-a-m-e" or "r-u-i-n" as well (only much, much faster), it is all the more integral to a company's success to be utterly consistent in the area of serving a customer well.  A family-owned business, such as ours, usually has an advantage in this - usually knowing this concept early on, in the very upbringing of the succeeding generation.  But in order to survive and thrive, every business must observe the axiom that has become our philosophy here at Loria Awards
       “Be the best at what you do, treat every customer with honesty, courtesy and respect, and offer the highest quality products at the fairest prices.” 

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