21 Impressive Word of Mouth Marketing Statistics
What could be better than having a cost-efficient advertising program work for your brand even without your direct input? Well, word of mouth marketing campaigns are growing in popularity, and they could be the solution you’ve been looking for.
After all, word of mouth marketing statistics suggest this form of advertising drives up to $6 trillion of consumer spending per year! This comes as no surprise, as we all love to talk about products and services to our friends and family.
Since humans love to share stories and experiences, word of mouth advertising can be a highly influential marketing tool.
So, wouldn’t you love to learn more? Sure you would! For that reason, we’ve prepared a collection of the most breathtaking stats and facts. Enjoy!
Notable Word of Mouth Marketing Stats (Editor’s Choice)
- 58% of consumers share positive experiences and talk about brands on social media.
- 84% of people in the US say that friends and family are a trustworthy source of information about products and services.
- 40% of consumers make online recommendations to help others find a good product.
- 35% of consumers admit that one negative review can influence them not to make a purchase.
- 20-50% of all purchasing decisions are directly influenced by word of mouth.
- 99% of B2B purchases are under the influence of referrals and recommendations.
- Only 22% of companies are using a formal referral program.
General Word of Mouth Marketing Stats
We’ll kick off this guide with a couple of statistics that can showcase the significance of this type of advertising in our daily lives.
1. As many as 83% of Americans admits that recommendations from a friend or a family member have a strong influence on their purchases.
In an in-depth survey, Medium discovered that a large number of Americans are influenced by friends or family when it comes to making a purchase. In fact, over eight in ten people admit being influenced by recommendations.
Clearly, this is a great opportunity for marketers.
With that said, let’s take a look at some more word of mouth marketing statistics for 2019.
2. 72% of consumers receive news about products from friends or family.
(Source: Pew Research Center)
Clearly, our social circles are the dominant source of information about new products or services. Nearly three-quarters of consumers say that they get news mostly from friends or family members.
Marketers should tap into this wire because word of mouth seems to be one of the most popular channels for sharing brand information. In other words, you could use word of mouth channels to boost brand awareness.
Speaking of brand visibility, the next statistic could fascinate you as well.
3. 90% of consumers check online reviews before making a purchasing decision.
(Source: Testimonial Engine)
Modern consumers can be demanding at times, but that’s usually because they know what they want. And they learn about products or services by reading reviews before visiting a business.
So if you are a business owner, you should be thinking something in the lines of “How can I improve my word of mouth marketing?”
After all, the vast majority of Americans will check online reviews about a business before making a decision, either a positive or a negative one.
4. More than two-thirds of consumers will postpone their purchasing decision until they read the reviews.
(Source: Testimonial Engine)
The importance of online reviews is also on the rise. With the advancements of the Internet, online reviews are becoming more and more relevant.
So, it doesn’t come as a surprise to see that 72% of consumers wait with their decision until they check what the online community has to say. This data shows why is word of mouth so important for marketers.
What’s more, research shows that:
5. As much as $6 trillion annual consumer spending is driven by word of mouth.
Businesses across the US have grasped the importance of referrals and recommendations. How could they not when word of mouth marketing statistics show the enormous importance of this form of advertising. For example, the data shows that word of mouth is responsible for a whopping $6 trillion of consumer spending per year!
To put things in perspective, word of mouth drives 13% of all sales, according to a study by the CMO. The same study found that word of mouth advertising is at least five times more effective than paid media when it comes to driving sales.
6. Word of mouth is behind 20-50% of all purchasing decisions.
Still not convinced that word of mouth plays a big role in modern business? Well, recent studies show that WOMM influences 20-50% of all purchasing decisions.
To be precise, the greatest influence of this marketing strategy is when people are buying expensive products. Or, when they are buying a product for the first time.
Either way, the opportunity for marketers is there for the taking.
Word of Mouth Advertising Statistics
7. Only 6% of marketers in the US would consider themselves experts in the word of mouth tactics.
Even though marketers are aware of the power of social exposure, it seems that they do not feel confident about their skills. Believe it or not, only a tiny minority of marketers in the United States consider themselves experts in applying a word of mouth marketing strategy.
Astonishing, isn’t it?
Well, the following data could shine more light on the matter.
8. Only a third of businesses are actively collecting reviews.
By the looks of it, there is a lot of room for improving the overall word of mouth effectiveness.
For instance, only 33% of businesses are actively seeking and collecting online reviews. Moreover, merely 22% of all companies have a referral program in place!
By putting more effort into word of mouth campaigns, many companies would experience a significant boost in revenue.
Speaking of revenue, the following stats will show you how word of mouth affects a business.
9. Offline word of mouth can increase sales by as much as 20%.
At the end of the day, every business owner would like to see a rise in sales. So, we have some good news! By maximizing the potential of offline word of mouth, organizations can increase sales by one-fifth!
When you think about it, this is a perfectly logical phenomenon. In fact, people have been using word of mouth promotion ever since the dawn of humankind. We love to share stories and experiences, influencing people around us in an intentional or unintentional way.
10. 99% of all B2B purchases are influenced by word of mouth.
Word of mouth plays a huge role in the B2B industry. In fact, it threatens to become the dominant form of advertising. A quick glance at our word of mouth marketing statistics can illustrate this point.
As it turns out, word of mouth is having an influence on virtually purchases in the B2B world. It is clear that decision-makers take reviews into consideration before putting their name on the dotted line.
Importance of Word of Mouth
11. 84% of global respondents consider word of mouth a trustworthy source of information.
Research has shown that the so-called experiential word of mouth is the most powerful form of referral advertising.
In fact, a global study by Nielsen discovered that 84% of people find family and friends the most trustworthy sources of information.
Credible and reliable information can influence consumers to buy. So, marketers need to go above and beyond to boost the quality of their word of mouth advertising campaigns.
But wait, there’s more.
12. 93% of Millenial women have made a purchase after hearing about the product for the first time from a friend or a family member.
(Source: Mom Central)
It’s no secret that Millenials spend a lot of time glued to their computer screens or phones. Well, they also spend a lot of time researching products.
Yet, the vast majority of Millenial women admit to buying a product after hearing about it from a family member or friend.
Whether the recommendation was offline or online, it is clear that word of mouth works with younger generations as well.
13. 89% of Millenials put more trust in recommendations from a friend or a peer than recommendations from an influencer or a brand.
(Source: Mom Central)
As we said, word of mouth influences younger generations in a direct and straightforward way. For example, almost 90% of Millennials put more trust in suggestions from a friend or peer than recommendations from an influencer or a brand.
Admittedly, the same study suggests that 57% of Millenials find reviews on the Internet “helpful for certain purchases.”
Could it be that the tide is shifting? As it turns out, 36% of Millenials admit they always check online reviews before making a purchasing decision.
14. Two-thirds of consumers in the US trust word of mouth recommendations from family and friends because they feel the suggestions will be honest.
(Source: Sprout Social)
In the modern business world, transparency and honesty can go a long way. In fact, 86% of consumers in America feel that transparency in business is more important than ever.
Likewise, 61% of consumers trust recommendations from their loved ones over celebrity endorsements because they believe family and friends will be honest.
In a way, this finding is in agreement with the basic word of mouth marketing definition, which says that this form of marketing is based on honest reviews from people within your close circle.
15. 50% of consumers in America prefers word of mouth as a source of information about products and services.
(Source: Convince and Convert)
Word of mouth marketing is not only great for customer retention, but for acquisition as well. Recent word of mouth marketing statistics can tell us that half of Americans would choose recommendations from friends and family as their primary source of information about new products and services.
On top of that, as many as 41% of consumers trust word of mouth suggestions from friends and family more than social media.
Speaking of social media, the next couple of statistics may be interesting as well.
Word of Mouth and Social Media
16. 58% of consumers in America seek advice from loved ones when talking about brands on social media.
Social media provides a convenient and accessible way of sharing information. When it comes to expressing feedback, Facebook is still the most popular social network. Of course, other platforms are not too far behind.
Well, research shows that more than half of Americans share experiences and seek advice about brands on social media. Needless to say, this leaves lots of room for implementing all sorts of word of mouth marketing ideas.
17. 59% of Millennials review products on the Internet only to share highly negative or highly positive experiences.
(Source: Mom Central)
More often than not, Millenials are advertising products without even being aware they are doing so. In other words, Vlogs and Stories provide viewers with insights into their lives. And products often get into the picture unintentionally.
Yet, 40% of them admit making recommendations to help others in the process of finding the right product or service.
Likewise, word of mouth marketing statistics for 2018 show that over half of Millennials make online recommendations only to share extremely positive or extremely negative experiences.
18. 58% of Americans have recently started leaving online reviews.
(Source: Testimonial Engine)
Truth be told, word of mouth in the virtual world is still a relatively new phenomenon. But the popularity of this advertising method is on the rise, no doubt about it.
For example, 58% of consumers in the US report that they began leaving online reviews within the last five years. So, with the increase in the number of word of mouth marketing sites, we can expect even influential referral campaigns.
In short, future marketers will specialize in creating influential word of mouth campaigns.
19. 82% of consumers find user-generated reviews highly valuable.
Another recent survey has found that 70% of consumers will check reviews and ratings prior to making a purchase.
Also, a whopping 82% of consumers consider user-generated recommendations extremely helpful.
However, it’s not all roses when it comes to word of mouth marketing. Here is why we say this
Negative Word of Mouth Statistics
20. 35% of consumers admit that one negative review can deter them from buying a product.
(Source: Fan and Fuel)
Online visibility can be a double-edged sword in the modern world. If you fail to provide outstanding service, you could be exposed to an avalanche of angry reviews.
With that said, recent word of mouth marketing stats report that over one-third of consumers can change their minds about buying a product after reading one negative review.
Too cruel for you? Well, hold tight, we have one more to go.
21. 82% of consumers in the US specifically scan the Internet in search of negative reviews
For some shoppers in the United States, negative reviews on the Internet are a vital element of their decision-making process. They understand that nothing in this world is perfect and that products always come with pros and cons.
As a matter of fact, more than eight out of ten US consumers say their search for products starts by looking for negative reviews.
What Is Word of Mouth Marketing Strategy?
Whether we like it or not, we live in a hyper-connected world. Information travels fast, and competition is often global. For that reason, growing businesses need all the help they can get.
Well, that’s where word of mouth strategies step onto the scene. But do you know what such a strategy should look like?
As you saw from our collection of stats, there are several types of word of mouth marketing. Yet, this age-old concept revolves around social interaction. In other words, word of mouth is an interactive and authentic advertising method that can boost brand awareness. On top of that, it can increase sales and generate loyalty.
The trick is in making people talk about your business! The more – the better!
So, how do you stimulate word of mouth marketing recommendations? Well, different marketers have different tactics when it comes to this question. But they all start by developing and implementing a dynamic word of mouth strategy.
This strategy presents a comprehensive set of tools and programs that can track word of mouth recommendations, social media feedback, online reviews, and so on.
If you are a business owner, can you really afford not to apply one such strategy? After all, our collection of word of mouth marketing statistics has shown the importance of this advertising concept.
So, take action and start spreading the word about your brand as soon as possible!