He's a good guy and from the looks of it has turned his wedding business into a money making machine by word of mouth marketing. Through some what seems like pretty simple word of mouth tips you too can do the same....and here's how!
1. Be Santa-Give to Vendors
2. Network with the Lowest
3. Work on your memory
4. Talk about people
5. Have a loss leader
6. Be the Ice Cream Man
7. Secret Seven-Krispy Kreme
His whole thing is to have other people talk about you to essentially avoid the
age old adage of, "tell all your friends about me, please!"
Here's an example he gave.. You do a photo shoot of model and instead of mentioning to the model that she should refer him. Ask her where she got her hair done and then when she mentioned that Suzi down the street at The Edge Salon did her hair, come back and say I love Suzi's work. Then a couple weeks later when your client, the model goes to see Suzi to get her hair done again, an instant conversation about you begins. It could work, right? I agree that this Suzi example could work, but in a market like New York City, you do have to go above and beyond because of the wedding photographer saturation level here.
Another overall point he made. You need to create a buzz for yourself by being as far away as possible from your potential client, so you are not the one referring yourself.
#5 Have a Loss Leader refers to doing something that's not your bread and butter and can provide you with a source of income that can also lead you to referrals. Your loss leader is basically your rock bottom prices and it helps you create a buzz. He does headshots as his loss leader.
#6 Be the Ice Cream Man. What does that mean? Let your client know when you are coming around so they can expect you to be around. For example, offer promotions at the same time every year. Then you and your customers know what to expect.
#7 Secret Krispy Kreme. This is a fun one, although again not sure how it applies to the New York City market. Drop off Krispy Kreme donut and then when the folks you dropped the donuts off at eat them, they talk about you..Hmm.. Does this really work? And always have an excuse for why you dropped off the donuts so it doesn't seem like a blatant marketing move.
You can check out Gene Ho's website here.