Report: 93% of Word of Mouth happens offline

The kids at Keller Fay Group are at it again. And this round of research is pointing to (if memory serves me correctly) an actual INCREASE in offline word of mouth. Again, if I’m remembering correctly, when I first started giving presentations on the subject, it was at 92%. Then it dropped in recent years to 90%. And now it’s back up to 93%. As they see it, online word of mouth includes email, text/im and social network sites.

The numbers for teens are a little different, but still may be surprising to you, because 85% of teen word of mouth happens offline.

You can read the full MediaPost article here.

I was asked a while back what I thought the agency of the future would look like. “You think I’m going to say digital, don’t you? I’m not. The agency of the future will be the one that is willing to roll up their sleeves, get their hands dirty and figure out how and why people connect OFFline. Let’s face it, 92% of WOM happens offline. Digital is getting to be the easy part. And those are tools. Just tools. We are humans. And we crave real interaction. The rise of offline focus – and I’m not talking traditional advertising – is coming.”

We’ve got to keep our eye on the ball, people. Shiny objects be damned. There is a balance between online and offline. And it’s our jobs to find it. I’m thinking it’s not a 50/50 split, either. So if your offline efforts aren’t working, don’t be so quick to shift your entire budget to online, because there’s a bigger problem that you might want to deal with first.

Onward.

26 Comments

  • September 28, 2010

    Hugh Weber

    Spike:

    I read this yesterday and thought of you. It does appear to be an actual increase, which is think would make some people’s heads explode if they actually were paying attention.

    It should really embolden and encourage the real world community and movement builders of the world.

    Hugh

  • September 28, 2010

    Vincent Ammirato

    Hey Spike. I’m reading your book right now…and it is seriously fucking with my internal compass…in a good way.

    I’ve always been a technologist but I’m not obsessed with the latest and greatest. When I taught, my 2 favorite pieces of technology were an overhead projector and white board. I had a fancy smart board…but only used it to extend the experience outside of the classroom walls. Instead, I focused on engaging the kids with hand-on experiences.

    I think that’s the key to knowing where the split between online and offline can be found….start thinking online when your offline community is saturated and ready to spread.

    Technology can amplify a message…but why would you amplify a message unless it is one you know will resonate with your fans/community/clients? Only offline experiences can tell you that. Technology can help formalize and extend community roles and relationships…but they have to first be based on real life models/people.

    Then, to bring it full circle, have the online reinforce real life interactions. 4square/gowalla are obvious choices but I’m seeing it everywhere (e.g. EmpireAvenue awards points for “board meetings” in real life).

  • September 28, 2010

    CindyRMount (Cindy R Mount)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @spikejones: You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 28, 2010

    SteveBauer (Steve Bauer)

    Twitter Comment


    Agreed RT @spikejones: You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline: [link to post]

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  • September 28, 2010

    DougH (Doug Haslam)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @christhilk: RT @spikejones: You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • Twitter Comment


    @spikejones Good thoughts but your blog may have eaten my comment – [link to post]

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  • September 28, 2010

    cindylarae (Cindy Saylor)

    Twitter Comment


    Signs of life…RT: @spikejones: You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline: [link to post]

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  • September 28, 2010

    suddenlysara42 (Sara Griffin)

    Twitter Comment


    Not on Twitter?? ;) “@spikejones: You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline: [link to post]

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  • September 28, 2010

    bdunc1 (Brett Duncan)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @cgawley: RT @spikejones: You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 28, 2010

    Carriecares (Carrie Corcoran)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @bdunc1: RT @cgawley: RT @spikejones: You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 28, 2010

    expmResults (ExpM)

    Twitter Comment


    People still talk to each other RT @spikejones You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline: [link to post]

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 28, 2010

    merubin (Michael E. Rubin)

    Twitter Comment


    REALITY CHECK: 93% of word of mouth is face to face and OFFline. [link to post] (via @Howardmann @spikejones)

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • September 28, 2010

    Leah

    I started to leave a comment earlier and it turned into a post. Link is above. Just thinking through three recent WOM events/trains in my own life.

  • September 28, 2010

    lynttweets (Lyn Engle)

    Twitter Comment


    RT @merubin: REALITY CHECK: 93% of word of mouth is face to face and OFFline. [link to post] (via @Howardmann @spikejones)

    Posted using Chat Catcher

  • [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Doug Haslam, Michael E. Rubin, Traci Gere, Vincent Ammirato, Melissa Diaz and others. Melissa Diaz said: RT @spikejones: You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline: http://askspike.com/?p=344 [...]

  • [...] @anneegibson: RT @ChrisThilk: RT @spikejones: You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline: http://askspike.com/?p=344 [...]

  • Twitter Comment


    Fantastic post! People crave interaction RT @spikejones: You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline [link to post]

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  • September 29, 2010

    semanio (Nate Hanna)

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    Report: 93% of Word of Mouth happens offline: The kids at Keller Fay Group are at it again. And this round of rese… [link to post]

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  • September 29, 2010

    spikejones (Spike Jones)

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    You heard it right: 93% of word of mouth happens offline: [link to post]

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  • September 29, 2010

    agallor (Antonio Gallo)

    Twitter Comment


    Reading: “Report: 93% of Word of Mouth happens offline « Ask Spike” ( [link to post] )

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  • October 2, 2010

    Traci Toguchi Twitter

    [...] tracitoguchi 93% Word of Mouth Happens Offline http://askspike.com/?p=344 | via @Howardmann || Future agencies will find how, why people connect [...]

  • [...] second post pulls it back even further, noting that 93% of Word-of-Mouth happens offline. That is, entirely [...]

  • [...] of Mouth is 90% OFFLINE. Basically, word of mouth (or WOM) is the most effective, crediable method to spread a message [...]

  • [...] So what makes me an expert on relationships then? Well, nothing really. But with the ever-growing popularity of The Facebook and The social media (Shouldn’t we put a “the” in front of all digital social media references from now on?), I think we’re losing some perspective on our online relationships and the value of face-to-face interaction. Or to be more blunt — we’re overvaluing the connections we make online big time! Because as much love as we give social media these days, 93 percent of WOM still happens offline. [...]

  • [...] the fence with your neighbor, on the phone, in the grocery store. Always. Read his complete article Here. The DC3 provides avenues for this at Open City, Drinks x Design, Detroit Design Festival, and [...]

  • [...] the fence with your neighbor, on the phone, in the grocery store. Always. Read his complete article Here. The DC3 provides avenues for this at Open City, Drinks x Design, Detroit Design Festival, and [...]

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