Who knew there were so many smart people in advertising? I just got back from the WOMMA Word of Mouth vs. Advertising conference in NYC. There was a lot of word of mouth about this word of mouth – and it lived up to the buzz. My neck is sore from nodding my head so much. The rest of the crowd was equally as enthralled. As two of the last panelists commented “we’re well into cocktail hour and you’re still here….why?”
If there was one overriding message to the conference it was this…..the consumer is in control. You can lie, manipulate, and coax, but the truth will always come out. WOMMA CEO Andy Sernovitz pronounced:
Ads will never again be free from real people providing real feedback -- and bringing to light the underlying claims of every campaign. Truth always rises to the surface.
So, with this power shift, who controls WOM? Do consumers control WOM? Or do marketers control WOM? And if marketers can’t control WOM, why has a whole marketing industry grown up around it?
From the insight I gained, here's how I'd answer that question...