It’s no secret that word of mouth is a powerful tool. In fact, many consumers will first look for reviews or ask friends and others that influence them before making a decision about who they purchase from or work with. What determines how people feel about your business? In one word – quality.

When it comes to online marketing how do you determine what will be worth your marketing efforts? Many businesses go with quantity. They purchase as many ads as possible from websites with the highest traffic. It’s all about the “numbers.” Higher numbers means more exposure, right? Of course!

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Do higher numbers equal more conversions, though? This is where it gets gray. When spearheading a marketing campaign, getting your name out there as much as possible is important, and it helps the campaign get a jump start. In fact, studies do show that it’s a strong driver of sales initially. The problem is, though, that it loses momentum. Ultimately, the amount of buzz created (how much is said) isn’t as important as what the buzz is about (what is actually said).

Once your name is already out there, consumers start noticing your name less and looking more for those that have now purchased your product or used your services. As those early sales convert it builds a market of influencers, which can be good or bad depending on the experiences the early adopters had. Did you ensure it was a positive one? Sometimes businesses are so consumed in advertising efforts they forget to follow up with consumers to ensure they had a positive experience – and will let others know they had a positive experience.

So what are consumers looking for? Details such as product attributes, emotions, and recommendations. Product attributes can be addressed in initial marketing campaigns, but they become more “real” for people as others share their experiences with the products and describe the attributes themselves. Of course, the emotions and recommendations really drive people to decide one way or another.

What does this mean? Make sure you’re focusing on quality. Ensure customers have a great experience and will share that experience with their friends. If they don’t, follow up with them to see how they could make the experience better. These efforts can ultimately make the difference between whether someone considers your products or services or continues their search.