Harnessing ‘Talk Triggers’ to boost customer retention – Jay Baer

On today’s episode of The Small Business Show, we are joined by Jay Baer, an author, advisor, Hall of Fame keynote speaker, and customer experience researcher. ASBN anchor Shyann Malone joins Baer to discuss how businesses can utilize “Talk Triggers” to their advantage.

What are Talk Triggers? Well, according to Baer, this concept refers to the popular phrase, “Word of Mouth will help organizations attract and keep customers.” However, Word of Mouth is dynamically more important than people realize; some forms influence more than 50% of purchases. Despite this, many businesses lack an actual Word of Mouth strategy.

Key Takeaways 

1. By Baer’s definition, Talk Triggers are a strategic, proactive system designed to create conversations among customers. The first step to implementing a strategy is to understand that what’s average is ignored, and what’s different is discussed. Therefore, businesses must identify something customers don’t expect, which makes sense contextually regarding who they are and what they’re about.

2. For example, a hamburger restaurant in Sacramento, California, has spent $0 on advertising, yet they have a line out the door daily. At this restaurant, every customer has a chance to order food and select a card out of a 52-card deck. If that customer selects the Joker, then their whole meal is free. The restaurant typically has four winners a day. 

3. Oftentimes, most organizations don’t lean into what makes them different enough. Yes, more businesses have impeccable customer service, but every business strives for that level of success. So, Baer suggests companies’ talk triggers must be repeatable. 

4. Small businesses can implement talk triggers faster than larger businesses because they can tweak operations faster. Baer also advises entrepreneurs to understand the four truths of talk triggers in order for them to work, along with the five types of triggers described in his book Talk Triggers: The Complete Guide to Creating Customers with Word of Mouth. 

5. Businesses should take Word of Mouth seriously, as it has a massive impact on customer acquisition and retention. Yet, fewer than 1% of companies have a Word of Mouth strategy, presenting a massive opportunity for those who do.

"If you get your talk trigger right, it allows you to spend less on advertising and marketing because your customers will do that job for you."

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