Cultivating Word-Of-Mouth

Measuring Your Success

We have now come to the final instalment of this series about cultivating word-of-mouth: helping your biggest fans helping you to succeed.

MEASURING UP

It is now time to measure your results. If you have done your homework, this will not be too difficult. Go back to your goals, which will tell you what to measure, and examine what has changed and what has been achieved.

Of course, you will need to know where you started, so make a note of the number of email addresses, Facebook fans, Twitter followers and any other information that is relevant to your activities and goals.

Look for the number of conversations initiated on Facebook and Twitter. Look for retweets, reposts and comments. Sign up with Google Analytics to view the number visitors and referrals.

Have you increased the number of email addresses and new tickets buyers? Are people returning more frequently? What is the open rate on your electronic newsletter? What is the feedback from your advocates?

Did you reach your goals? What worked best and what did not work at all?

The answers to these questions are probably at your fingertips, waiting to be discovered in your social media platforms, your newsletter service, and your ticketing software.

After measuring your results, you will be able to set new goals as you focus your efforts for better results. If you didn’t do it before, try adding measurements to your goals. For example, you can strengthen your goal to increase first-time ticket buyers at each performance, by adding the specific measurement to increase by at least 10 first-time ticket buyers.

In closing, I would like to offer a few final thoughts.

  • Cultivating word-of-mouth is entirely about relationships, and people helping people. Give your advocates the tools to be successful, and success will be yours.
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  • Communicate the benefits, and give them a clear call to action. Give your advocates the freedom and authority to do their work. Have faith.
  • Always acknowledge their work

THE ARTS TAKEAWAY:

For many performing arts organizations, word-of-mouth is a key ingredient in their marketing plans. Unfortunately, there rarely is an actual plan, as word-of-mouth is left to chance. Developing a customer advocacy or word-of-mouth campaign gives you that plan to actively cultivate word-of-mouth. Give your fans the tools and the authority to work for you. They want your success just as much as you. Let them spread the good word.