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Report: Cities Where Word of Mouth Is Alive and Well

A new study tracked consumer conversations and found some surprising results.

Does your marketing team know where your brand's good, old fashioned word of mouth buzz is the strongest? If not, here's a good starting point.

A new survey reveals where in the country consumers have the most conversations about brands--both offline and online. The top cities include Houston, Jacksonville, and Miami.

The survey, compiled by Keller Fay Group, a New Jersey-based marketing research and consulting company, interviewed approximately 75,000 consumers across the U.S. over a two year period. It asked the consumers how often they had conversations about a brand (whether large or small, offline or online) and the types of products that were the topics of those conversations. 

The firm’s findings revealed that, with an average of 95 consumer conversations per person per week, Houston is the number one most "talkative" city in the United States. This compares with the national average of 79 weekly consumer conversations per person. Rounding out the top 10, the remaining 7 top cities included: Salt Lake City, Atlanta, New Orleans, Los Angeles, San Diego, Norfolk, Va. and West Palm Beach, Fla.

Milwaukee is the least brand-chatty city, averaging 63 conversations per individual each week.

“Our research shows that seven of the 10 most talkative cities are in the South, suggesting special opportunities for marketers to promote their brands through word of mouth marketing in that region,” Keller Fay Group Chief Operating Officer Brad Fay said in a statement

Interesting note: Less than 10 percent of this chatter, the survey found, happened online.

The study also monitored the consumer categories people were most likely to be talking about. For example Houston, residents are 37 more likely to be talking about automotives compared with the rest of the nation, and those who live in Los Angeles are 18 percent more likely to be discussing personal care and beauty. 

Last updated: Oct 21, 2013

LAURA MONTINI | Staff Writer

Laura Montini is a reporter at Inc. She previously covered health care technology for Health 2.0 News and has served as an associate editor at The Health Care Blog. She lives in San Francisco.

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