Wednesday, December 16th, 2015

Referrals and the Future of Marketing .. Rebecca Mountain


Research came out recently about how girls often decide if their significant others are up to snuff (I always wonder about who conducts this research, and how much of our tax money goes towards it, but whatever…It works.) We’re recommendation junkies. We have our go-to people for different things – shopping, cars, tech, etc. We used to do this over coffee, drinks, dinner or the phone. Now we take these conversations to Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare, among others. And brands are waking up to this powerful opportunity: leverage social connections to get people to recommend you.

In this vein, Facebook is coming out with a new ad structure for Pages. It may seem innocuous. It may seem small. But it’s a great step for social marketers.

What is Social Marketing?

This concept isn’t really new. In January, Facebook came out with Sponsored Stories. These are triggered when someone does something on your page, such as clicking on the Like Button. Once they do that, all THEIR friends get a message saying their friend just Liked your Page. This then encourages them to check you out, and so the viral world turns.

The New Social Ads from Facebook

The latest and greatest from Facebook will be announced this week, so details are sparse. It will work thus: Social Ads won’t ever appear in your News Feed (Yay!), and in addition to stating the action taken (i.e Page Like), it will contain a drop-down to an advertiser’s message. So, instead of it just displaying to your friends that you Liked a Page, it will add, below that announcement, a wee little message about the Page itself. And it ALL appears in your Ticker, never in your News Feed.


Marketing has gone completely social, even if Marketers are resisting it. In typical fashion, most Marketers strive to hold onto their traditional forms of advertising – it still works, sort of. Well, most of the time. And it will still work, providing it is deeply integrated with social advertising. And by social advertising I mean by referrals from friends and family. Word of Mouth Marketing has always and forever been the Holy Grail of successful brands. Most people don’t trust ads – they will, however, buy a product or service based on either a) A recommendation from someone THEY know and trust; or 2) Someone they don’t know, but who has experienced the product and left a recommendation/suggestion for them to review.

Everything is Going Social

Make no mistake. Marketing is going social, so no matter if you’re a coffee shop, a Realtor, or a service provider, it behooves you to understand this very simple but effective tool. There will be more information coming out from Facebook this week about how this will all roll out, so pay attention. It’s Word of Mouth on steroids.

I will be posting content about this here in this blog, but also on my Facebook Page, so if you want to stay connected and share in the conversations, find me here:

Seriously. Get your heads around social marketing, for the sake of your business and your clients.


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