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New Word of Mouth Firm Slams Buzz Marketing

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Basically ramming a dagger in the back of buzz marketing firm BuzzAgent, word of mouth marketing firm BoldMouth has launched with a ferociously negative view of buzz marketing practices. Mincing no words, the companies press release reads, in part, "Real word-of-mouth marketing is about sharing advice as well as product and service recommendations. These informal and typically person-to-person dialogs should not to be confused with 'buzz marketing' that is nothing more than an attempt to artificially engineer a referral by offering incentives so that "agents" make recommendations on behalf of an organization." Ouch. Dave Balter might have a bit to say about that back stab.

As if gleeful in his attack, BoldMouth Founder Todd Tweedy said, "Word of mouth is an operational principle that organizations can pursue and model to increase loyalty and ultimately revenue that creates a customer-centric approach to marketing. Disguising a commercial as a person and having these 'agents' share commercial messages on an unsuspecting audience with misleading 'buzz' tactics simply creates more ad clutter and puts brands in unnecessary danger. It's time to put an end to buzz marketing."

Somehow this all seems very counter productive to the growth of a nascent advertising practice but the verbal warfare that will undoubtedly follow this release will be charmingly amusing to watch.

Written by Steve Hall    Comments (7)     File: Viral, Word of Mouth     Dec-12-05  

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Comments

[Yawn] It's been done. This controversy is sooooo three weeks ago...

Posted by: Tom Hespos on December 12, 2005 01:30 PM

Always nice to see the kids pick a fight.

And, always nice to see an agency trying to make a name for themselves by actually having an opinion.

Now, while Todd is actually right, it is also always nice to see a blog use the word "nascent."

Posted by: Peter on December 13, 2005 10:18 AM

And the difference between what Buzzmouth aspires to do is what? You're right. This "should" be fun to watch.

BTW - I hit Buzzmouths site out of curiosity and was perplexed to see "Copyright 2006 by BoldMouth.com" in their footer. What's the deal - taking the rest of the year off to pick fights?

Posted by: te on December 13, 2005 04:13 PM

And the difference between what Boldmouth aspires to do is what? You're right. This "should" be fun to watch.

BTW - I hit Buzzmouths site out of curiosity and was perplexed to see "Copyright 2006 by BoldMouth.com" in their footer. What's the deal - taking the rest of the year off to pick fights?

Posted by: te on December 13, 2005 04:13 PM

buzzmouth...boldagent....whatever. :)

Sorry for polluting your blog.

>

Posted by: te on December 13, 2005 04:15 PM

Itís not complicated: I believe there is a right-way and a wrong-way to practice word of mouth. Thatís it. I donít believe marketers can create buzzÖ buzz is created by individuals using a product or service. Itís a principle that I plan to use in running my company.

If you have a different opinion. Great.

I believe buzz marketing lacks a compelling purpose for brands to move away from mass marketing and to make significant changes with how they market products and services. Creating a different kind of ad clutter isnít the answer.

One benefit of word of mouth is the ability to make meaningful connections Ė to remove the 2 degrees of separation between advertisers and the person who isnít aware of the product or service the advertiser offers. Thatís just for startersÖ

Oh Ė the copyright mistake is mine. I didnít think the site would be done as fast as it was and didnít expect the launch to happen in 2005 because we were using a new development language called PTM. It turned out we were one month ahead of schedule. PTM is open source so feel free to take a look.

Thanks for the feedback.

Posted by: Todd Tweedy on December 14, 2005 04:18 PM

Todd - with all due respect, I'm not seeing the difference. I appreciate your zeal and your stance but you're still being paid to create the buzz. You are a marketer - as much as you may hate to admit it.

I suppose having the hubris to challenge an industry leader out of the gate is just inviting criticism.

Anyway - best of luck to you. Just having a little fun. I'm "still" looking forward to seeing how this all pans out. :)

-Tť

Posted by: te on December 15, 2005 08:53 PM

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