July 22, 2024

A Big Mouth Might Not Be Big Enough

My father owned restaurants most of his life, all kinds from greasy spoon to tablecloth with full bar. When he opened his last one, he sent out invitations to his grand opening. He sent them to any- and everyone we knew. Later he put in a stage and had bands come in to play on Friday and Saturday nights. To promote this, he ran small ads in the local paper (it was in the days when people still read the newspaper for most of their news).

I remember asking why he didn’t run more ads, He said he did not need to; he had good food, good booze and a great reputation. Word of mouth did/had built his business.

It also helped that he was one of less than a handful of full food restaurants/bars in that part of downtown Buffalo and the closest restaurant to where they played hockey and basketball. Also this was in the late 1960’s early 1970’s.

Using only word of mouth advertising works once you get your business established, for a while.

With all the information that we are bombarded with each day, any business and especially a new business must break through the noise and continually do so.

If you rely only on word of mouth, then your base of mouths over time will shrink to nothing. It is a common fact that you can lose up to 25% of your client base each year. The reasons:

  • Some die
  • 18-25% move
  • Some undergo a lifestyle change (unemployed, divorced or other personal changes)
  • Lured by competitors
  • They simply forget about you

Team up word-of-mouth advertising with effective break-through-the- noise marketing to keep your customers coming back again and again.