Double Tree and the Power of Talk Triggers : A Book Review and a Lesson to Marketers

Word of mouth marketing continues to be one of the most popular forms of marketing. Have you ever visited a restaurant because a friend told you about their great experience? Have you ever tried a product or service because someone close to you recommended it? I know I have. Naturally, when we have a great experience with a product or service, we have to tell someone about it. People are more likely to trust the recommendations given by family or friends. Brands that are able to create an emotional connection receive three times more word-of-mouth than those that don’t. Read more about brand strategy here

One thing that never changes is that brand storytelling is the past, present, and future of effective marketing. If you have not had the opportunity to read Talk Triggers, I suggest you grab your copy today. This book perfectly captures the benefits of word of mouth marketing and offers a guide to creating your own talk trigger. Filled with examples of different companies, you get insight into what it means to be a memorable brand. Baer and Lemin help us discover what our brands can do differently to evoke conversations and garner loyalty.

By reading this book, we dive deep into the age-old concept of word of mouth marketing and we take the steps needed to use it efficiently. Word of mouth was and is free publicity, and when used correctly, it can propel your business. Simple, yet powerful. Relevant. Remarkable. Reasonable. Repeatable. These are the tools they share in this book. Every current and aspiring business owner should have a copy of this book if you don’t get your copy here

We all love a great chocolate chip cookie. No one does cookies as well as DoubleTree. Believe it or not, those delicious cookies are DoubleTree’s talk trigger. Something so simple, so sweet has had the ability to capture the hearts and loyalty of guests since 1986. DoubleTree has noted that the cookie is a symbol of hospitality and a representation of their brand. DoubleTree identifies itself as a welcoming brand. The cookies are their gesture at an array of welcoming moments that come standard with their guests’ stay. As mentioned before, Baer and Lemin say that the four criteria of a talk trigger are for it to be: remarkable, relevant, reasonable, and repeatable. DoubleTree has succeeded thus far, but with COVID-19 causing a decrease in travel and hotel stays, how are they ensuring their talk trigger is still a topic of conversation?

This brings up a bigger question: How do we stay relevant when we are confined to our homes? DoubleTree was thinking of this same question when they came up with the ingenious idea to release their famous chocolate cookie recipe so that people could bake them at home. For decades, we have wondered what goes into making those magical, gooey, gourmet chocolate chip cookies and recently we received our answer. That’s the magic of a powerful talk trigger, it stays in our hearts and minds. DoubleTree gave up their prized recipe because they didn’t want their talk trigger to stop being talked about.

Not only did they master the art of creating and implementing a talk trigger, but they also mastered marketing during a crisis. When we return to normalcy and hotels open back up, employees at DoubleTree will most likely have a new conversation starter: how did the chocolate chip cookies turn out when they followed the recipe? Were they as good as the original? 

Marketers, take note. This is how you do it.  This is how you stay ahead. Identify your talk trigger and make it work for all situations. 


Eric Woodson
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