Clickz.com today reports that authors Bryan and Jeffrey Eisenberg used blogs and other forms of online word-of-mouth marketing to propel their new book A Call to Action to the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Amazon.com bestseller lists.
Specifically, they offered review copies to colleagues and asked them to promote the book via their blogs and email newsletters. Those asked did so extensively and in the three weeks since the book’s release, over 17,000 copies have been sold. All without the help of advertising, national distribution or promotional support from the publisher either.
My point is that blogs can be used effectively as word-of-mouth marketing tools. They, along with other such mediums, go beyond hyped, interruptive ads filled with marketing-speak to provide credible sources for referral. As one blogger I read put it, “Blogs are the last form of honest advertising.”The strategy used by the Einsenburg brothers is one worthy of emulation. I have a personal friend, Stacy Harp, who has turned that same type of strategy into a business, Mind & Media.
Stacy contracts with publishers getting bloggers to review books. The publisher provides Stacy with a certain number of books. She then distributes them to bloggers she’s recruited to be what she terms “exclusive reviewers.” The bloggers are not paid for their services and can write anything they want, good, bad or indifferent.
The strategy is working so well that some major publishing houses have contracted with Stacy for this service.
Think about your business. How can you use blogs to promote your service or product? Developing your own blog is the first step. Building a community of bloggers around you is another; a community built on the cornerstones of transparency and authenticity, which engenders trust. Once that’s done, you too can emulate the Eisenburg brothers and ask your circle of bloggers to help you. Try the model for yourself, and see if it works. I’d be interested in hearing your results.