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Brains on Fire: Igniting Powerful, Sustainable Word of Mouth Movements by Spike Jones, Geno Church, Greg Cordell, Robbin Phillips

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Chapter 8. Movements Live Both Online and Off-Line

Listen closely to what we're about to say: 90 percent of word-of-mouth interactions happen off-line. Yes, you read that right. Nine. Zero. Percent. The good folks at the Keller Fay Group have done the homework, and it's no joke.

Look, social media is great. The Internet allows ideas to travel at the speed of light, and it connects us to both information and other like-minded people. But as great as all the Twitters and Facebooks and MySpaces and blogs and message boards and digital doodads are, they will never, ever replace the power of shaking someone's hand, looking them in the eye, getting kindred spirits in the room (or better yet, at your brand's Mecca), and laughing together, getting a drink, sitting at the dinner table—whatever. So many companies are getting caught up in the tactics of social media and word-of-mouth marketing; they jump right in and quickly get bogged down in the technical details. But we need to engage people first. After you talk with them and observe how they communicate and connect, the tools and tactics will be as plain as the nose on your face. No guessing. No need for redos. Nothing except forward momentum.

We've quoted Justine Foo—a PhD holder in complex systems and the brain sciences—several times in this book so far, but now we're going to unleash her. Justine has an amazing combination of extreme intellect and approachability and is more than likely one of the few neuroscientists actually involved ...

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