BLOGS AND REVIEWS INTRODUCTION: With the advent of internet, the world is getting more and more powerful and independent people anywhere in the world can access the internet and post whatever they want to. Blogs and user reviews online have a big impact on the other buyer choice regarding purchasing the thing. By looking at the analyses of products and services one decides whether to buy or leave the product.
Blogs fascinatingly, have more impact on the buyer than advertisements and marketing campaigns and considered to be one of the most powerful e-word of mouth nowadays.BODY: Before the existence of the internet the information related to product consumption or buying could relatively reached a very few people (I-e very close friends or family).But Now, things have changed a lot and by the growing of internet day by day one’s review of s movie, book, product, university, professor or even employer can be easily and instantly posted and can reach hundreds of thousands of people around the globe. Furthermore, with the internet growing rapidly allowing people to post more sophisticated, informative, critical and reviews about the product quickly, easily and can interact with the people around the world both visually and verbally (Schiffman, O’Cass, 2010).
This is possible because of the power of the word of mouth, which has transferred into e-word of mouth and has brought a huge flow in money and consumer acquisition. Marketers are particularly interested in better understanding of WOM because traditional forms of communication appear to be losing effectiveness (Nail 2005). For example, one survey shows that consumer attitudes toward advertising plummeted between September 2002 and June 2004. Nail (2005) reports that 40% fewer people agree that advertisements are a good way to learn about new products, 59% fewer people report that they buy products because of their advertisements, and 49% fewer people find that advertisements are entertaining. E-WOM also results in applying the strategic creativitiesIn social networks, buzz agents, viral advertising, and e-referrals and endorsements as well as replying efficiently to adverse rumours (Schiffman, O’Cass, 2010). ‘There is an interesting paradox in the dynamics of e-WOM occurring in digital social networks, brand communities, online message boards, chat rooms and blogs. While marketers have virtually no control over the information exchanged in these forums, these platforms are probably the most important sources of consumer information. First, online sources can be accessed instantly from almost any location and at any time.
The fact that the world ‘googled itself is now part of the English language demonstrates nearly he universal use of the Web as one’s primary source of information’ (Schiffman, O’cass, 2010). One call it the world is most effective, yet least understood marketing strategy (Misner 1999). The word of mouth whether positive or negative has an impact on the consumer in either way. A study investigated how consumer reacts to negative e-WOM and found that readers of negative reviews of hedonic (i.
e. pleasure-focused) products attributed the comments to the reviewers’ internal and non-product-related reasons and did not consider the reviews useful. However, readers of negative reviews for utilitarian products attributed the reviews to product related reasons and found them more useful than positive reviews.
Another study investigated the extent to which consumers with varied levels of social connectedness were likely to engage in word of mouth. The results showed that word-of-mouth did not come only from the highly connected people, and that moderately connected people were as willing as highly connected persons to engage in word-of-mouth. The researchers attributed these findings to people’s need to give advice and their enjoyment of sharing information.
(Schiff man, O’cass 2010). Marketers for long time have been trying to come up with something in accordance to WOM. Many companies are now coming up with the buzz agents that is they are hiring the agents online to promote their advertising campaigns rather than the spending the money on traditional marketing the marketers are moving forward and they recruit buzz agents who agrees to promote their products by engaging in behaviours such as: bringing products to family gatherings ; reading books promoted by publishers on mass transit with the titles clearly visible, suggesting to store owners who do not carry a given product that they should do so; and talking other consumers into trying certain products during shopping trips. For example, BzzAgent recruits buzz agents and assists in clients in creating buzz marketing campaigns. Similarly, P has created a company known as tremor specialising in targeting teens and their families. Tremor screens applicants for buzz agent’s positions and only select those who meet specific standards in terms of being likely to be an effective word of mouth communicator.
Some marketers are also hiring actors and models to go out and simulate demand for a product. For instance, a campaign for a new brand of flavoured vodka use paid actors or models to visit bars and night clubs and order martinis made with new brand. Similarly, in a campaign for an online gambling site in London, cab drivers were asked to steer passengers to a discussion about a poker, direct them to gambling site and even provide ‘free hand’ coupons to passengers who expressed considerable interest.
(Schiff man, O’Cass, 2010). Word of mouth marketing derives $6 trillion of annual consumer spending and is estimated to account for 13% of consumer sales. WOM marketing impressions results in five x more sales than a paid media campaign and people are 90% more likely to trust and buy from a brand recommended by a friend.
(Khalid saleh, 2015) The most common and swift form of e-WOM is blogs. Blogging is acting more like a source on which the consumer leaves the decision of purchasing a particular product. Blogging is more like in access of each and every individual and coming in use more and more day by day. The most effective thing about blogging online is that anyone anywhere in the world can blog anything for example the recent example of blogging and it’s effect on consumer and not only on the consumer but in the market as a whole is the “Apple slowing down the old phones intentionally” that one person blog about the issues and then the whole market was talking about the issue and I the matter of days people was talking about the phone lagging all over the world and company itself apologises to the consumers and are facing a couple of lawsuits around the globe over defrauding the consumers.
The term reviews are more likely similar to the blogs but it is quite different in some sense. It’s a sense of freedom that any consumer can feel nowadays, and can express it’s feeling about the product. Now, the web is full of multiple forums where one can go and review about anything. Moreover, companies and business owners and employees encourages the customers to go and review about how they feel about their experience. For example, as self-experience of being working in a restaurant the owner keeps on encouraging us that once the customer done with its food and ready to pay ask the customer whether they like or dislike our service do let us know about their experience and it do works. There are different forums on like TRIP ADVISOR, GOOGLE, REVIEW IT.
“How important are consumer feedback to retailers? Very significant, as it turns out. The fact is, 90% of purchasers analyses the product online before buying. In addition, 88% of customers take the reviews recommendation as final decision. For nearly 9 in 10 consumers, an online review is as important as a personal recommendation.Customers are likely to spend 31% more on a business with “excellent” reviews.72% say that positive reviews make them trust a local business more92% of users will use a local business if it has at least a 4-star rating72% of consumers will take action only after reading a positive reviewReliability (27%), expertise (21%) & professionalism (18%) are the most important reputation traits for a local businessEstimated Number of Online Reviews Customers Read Before Trusting a BusinessEstimated number of reviews%age08%13%2-324%4-632%7-1018%11-208%21-303%31-401%41-501%51+2% 86% of people will hesitate to purchase from a business that has negative online reviews.
On average, a one-star increase on Yelp leads to a 5 to 9% increase in a business’s revenue. At the same time, a single negative review can cost a business about 30 customers.The number of reviews posted every minute by Yelp users is 26,380The percentage of Yelp users that have made a purchase at a business they found on Yelp is 98%The percentage of Yelp users that visit Yelp because they intend to make a purchase is 80%.” (Khalid Saleh, 2010). CONCLUSION: Based on the knowledge and research done in the essay it is quite clear that blogs and reviews are effecting the purchasing decision of the buyer in different ways and do impact the brand image, quality and perception as well. The figures told that eight out of every 10 consumers do search about the store or product they are planning to visit or buy.References: Saleh, Shukairy.
(2010) Conversion Optimization: The Arts and Science of Converting Prospects to Customers, 1st Ed. O’Relly Media. (Accessed on 20/1/2018 available at info graphics by HYPERLINK “http://www.
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Austin: Bard Press. Nail, Jim (2005). “What’s the Buzz on Word-of-Mouth Marketing? Social Commuting and Consumer Control Put Momentum into Viral Marketing”Schiff man L, O’Cass, Paladino, Carlson.
(2010). Consumer Behaviour 6th Ed PP 240-280.