Author: virginia.miracle

I am a passionate Word of Mouth Marketing practitioner. The juxtaposition of my experiences in WOMM vs. my time in the trenches of one of the country’s most voluminous direct marketers has given me firsthand understanding of the power of customer conversation and the relative inefficiency of shout and interruption marketing. Currently, I am the Director of Word of Mouth Marketing at Brains on Fire, a national Identity and Word of Mouth marketing company. There, I champion the client services group and intimately shepherded the Fiskateers crafting ambassador program for the first 18 months of its existence. Brains on Fire is a supremely creative and intuitive company. If you ever are in search of examples for how to make every customer touchpoint express your true personality, try calling the Brains on Fire front desk. I was first turned on to the power of conversational marketing through a role I was asked to tackle during my 4 years at Dell, Inc. in Round Rock Texas. I began my time there in Corporate Strategy and rolled through various roles in consumer marketing including word of mouth marketing manager (believed to be the first WOMM title at a F50 company) and leading the company’s online advertising to consumers and small businesses. Before that, I was a proud member of the late-90s phenomenon Trilogy Software and earned a BA in English language and literature from Princeton. I am a member of the Word of Mouth Marketing Association’s Board of Directors. I am also a new mom, a mean Scrabble player, and a (formerly closeted) Bruce Hornsby superfan. I recently completed GH3 for Wii on Medium, but secretly doubt if I’m going to get good enough to go through it on Hard. I’m not sure how many more times I can listen to Metallica’s “One”, anyway.
Wendy’s & The Audacity of Personality (video)

Wendy’s & The Audacity of Personality (video)

Brandon Rhoten on stage at the Times Center in NYC (photo credit @msspinach)

A few weeks ago, I had the chance to interview Wendy’s head of social/digital, advertising and media, Brandon Rhoten live in NYC at the 2017 WOMMA Summit. Brandon was pithy and forthcoming, sharing the story behind the Wendy’s brand personality and how their approach to audience engagement has led to runaway successes like fan/competitor “roasting” and “Nuggs for Carter”. Check out the live counter of Carter’s free nugget retweets vs. Ellen’s Oscar selfie retweets – he overtook Ellen about a week after this interview transpired.

Perhaps most valuably, Brandon shares techniques for watching what is starting to grow organically and how a brand can gently encourage that tinder to catch fire. Brandon also shares the way management built their tolerance for their “charming challenger” personality being able to take risks and tolerate mistakes.

Check out the video here or the Forbes article on the interview here.

Austin CityGram Piece Live!

Austin CityGram Piece Live!

In December, I had the pleasure of spending the day with the talented Nadia Chaudhury.  We walked though a very fun day in my life – including interacting with Natanya Andersen and Jan Ryan who are two of my Austin favorites as well as my team.  It is a rare and special thing to have talented artists capture in words and images the joy that you find in your daily life and I adore this piece. If you’re interested, the full article and amazing photos at Austin CityGram here.


Exciting Update, Article & W20 SXSW Video

Exciting Update, Article & W20 SXSW Video

A lot has happened over the last couple of months.  Most importantly, Spredfast and Mass Relevance merged this month to form a 350 person Social Marketing Platform company, for which I am pleased to serve as Chief Customer Officer.  Lots more to come on that and the marketing at the speed of life made possible by the combined technologies.

In March, the folks at Entrepreneur were kind enough to publish me.  Please visit them here to read the full text of Woo Loyal Customers For Life with 4 Winning Ways.

And during SXSW, I participated in the WCG’s W2O Group Pre-Commerce Summit.  The video and slides from this 10 minute talk here:

Bonus: I address my very loud green jacket IN the video.

Social Media Rules Article in Entrepreneur

Social Media Rules Article in Entrepreneur

Last week, an interview I did with Entrepreneur magazine did whatever the digital version of “hit the newsstands” is.  While many of these thoughts were geared to CEOs of small or medium businesses, the content could really apply to any social media leader living in the real world of constrained resources.

Please head on over there and take a gander.

Amping up Peer-to-Peer WOMMA Connections in 2013

Amping up Peer-to-Peer WOMMA Connections in 2013

The below is cross posted on the All Thing WOMM blog.

Happy New Year from all of us at WOMMA! I am honored to be serving as your Board Chair this year and looking forward to an amazing 2013.

2012 was a busy year for the organization – raising the bar on our events, upgraded educational offerings, new councils, the WOMM ROI guidebooks, and refreshed ethical and legal guidance to our practitioners, and some exciting additions to the staff. My predecessor, David Witt, set the tone across all of these efforts by focusing the organization on building brand advocacy – which has become a “true north” for us as the official trade organization for word of mouth and social media marketing.

Before I share with you our focus for 2013, I would like to contextualize it with a few sentences on my history with the organization. I was lucky enough to be present at WOMMA’s first summit in Chicago in 2005. I was a marketer at Dell and the lone member of a large department tasked with figuring out how to employ “viral marketing” for a new product launch (these were the days of Subservient Chicken, after all). At WOMMA, I not only learned the value of marketing by inspiration vs. interruption, I was more importantly given entre into a community of practice. In a medium that moves as quickly as ours, it would be impossible to stay current with simply reading industry blogs or our own experiences alone.

Over the years, WOMMA has connected me with the professionals who have given me advice that has changed my career and accelerated my own practice of WOMM. It is personal experience combined with what we learn from our respected peers that will allow us to continue to evolve WOMM as quickly as the means to spread and amplify it.

Thus, in looking at 2013, I am not here to shift our content direction, but instead to focus on HOW we as an organization, a staff, and a board serve you, the members. We want to take that amazing community feeling and valuable peer-to-peer connections of Summit & WOMM-U and extend it throughout the year and to a deeper bench of each member company’s marketers. For all of those who have approached me and wanted to get more involved, you have been heard. We will be providing many more means and opportunities throughout the year for you to take a more active role and get more value from the organization in the process.

Member Center

Here’s a sampling of some new ways the WOMMA community will be extended:

  • WOMMfest – On February 19, we’ll be hosting a first-of-its-kind coast to coast celebration of WOMM called WOMMfest.  In addition to three anchor events in Seattle, Chicago, and Atlanta, our friends at House Party are powering an opportunity for 50+ member companies across the country to host local WOMMA Trivia Nights. This is a chance to share your knowledge and enthusiasm with colleagues, clients, agencies, and vendors alike. Apply to host a party in your city here.
  • New Member Center – First of its kind member center providing you an opportunity to access a huge library of presentations and research material to build your internal cases for WOMM, but the opportunity to connect with your WOMMA colleagues and fellow council members on a far more frequent basis.
  • Better Events – Want to have a role in determining what content is shared on our event stages?  We are assembling member task forces who will determine what speaking and content proposals will make it on stage at WOMM-U and Summit. Email Sarah Stauffer at for more info.
  • More Councils – Our expanding group of councils and evolving WOMM-COM programs will provide great opportunities to get more members of WOMMA companies involved by providing year round education for members at every stage of their careers.

We wake up every day hoping to make WOMMA a more valuable organization for our members.  If you have ideas or feedback, we’d love to hear from you, especially in the member center. It’s your organization, and we hope that in 2013 you’ll help us find ways to make WOMMA even better for your career, for our membership, and for the entire industry.

Start interacting and taking full advantage of your membership right now at the member center.

Happy New Year!