Discovering The WOMMA Edge

This is the section of my blog where I will share my experiences as a member of the WOMMA Board of Directors. I have served on the board for three years, most recently as the Board President/Chairman. I was recently reelected to serve an additional three year term and will be responsible for fulfilling the duties of Immediate Past Chairman during 2012. I'll tell you what I see, what I hear and what I do.  But mostly I'll let you know when I discover something that stands out... A WOMMA Edge.

Some background:
It was in 2007 when I first became aware of The Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA).  Through good fortune and luck I met one of the organizations founders, Andy Sernovitz, at a CMO Conference that was being held in Florida.  Andy was talking about his new book "Word Of Mouth Marketing - How Smart Companies Get People Talking."  During his presentation, Andy stressed the importance of enabling, inspiring, and empowering a company's community of loyal customers to spread the good news of the businesses products and services.
Among the key thoughts that I took away from that session were these:
  • Know your talkers, 
  • Give them something to talk about, and 
  • Make it easy to share.  
Andy also impressed upon the attendees that "Advertising is the price you (businesses) pay for having an unremarkable product or service".  
WOMMA LogoIt was right there that I knew I needed more information.  For years I'd been talking about a BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal) for the businesses I had worked for... "To never have to advertise for a (lead/customer/sale) again."  I believed that a significant competitive edge would exist for any business that could could rely on the positive referrals and loyalty of customers to become the marketing engine that generated future customers.  After the session I introduced myself to Andy.

Andy told me about WOMMA and the excitement that was being shared among those who attended WOMMA events.  Some were thought leaders and some were early learners.  I put it on the top of my list to attend the WOMMA Summit in Las Vegas that year. It was great and my colleague and I came back feeling as though we were overflowing with good ideas and opportunity. I haven't missed a major WOMMA event since.

In 2008 I was asked to consider running for a position on the WOMMA Board of Directors. I was successful and began my three year term in January of 2008.  One of only a handful of brands on the board at that time, I was chosen to serve on Executive Committee and to lead the Governance Committee through a thorough review and update of the associations bylaws. I served as President elect throughout 2010 and became increasingly involved with the strategic direction and initiatives of the organization. Now, in 2011, I am in my year as Board President.