Are you looking to maximize exposure and profits while consistently working towards acquiring new customers? There’s nothing better out there than referral marketing.
Referral marketing is all about encouraging people in your niche to share your products and services. This can be your existing customers, influencers and thought leaders in your market.
Truth be told, referral marketing the the easiest way to better position your brand and leverage your existing customer base. All you need to do is design a referral system that actively encourages sharing.
There are many different ways to create a referral system for your business. 1 – You could choose to compensate referrals based on a specific cash value. 2 – Credit towards purchases made on your shop OR 3 – Other incentive-based offers that motivate people to share your products and services amongst their own inner circles.
However, there’s a problem here. Most people don’t spend enough time understanding what is currently working in their market so they can design a referral program around what is likely to move the needle.
Even worse, a large majority of businesses overlook referral marketing altogether and do little more than set up a basic affiliate program and hope it will help them expand their outreach.
‘Build it once and they will keep coming’ simply doesn’t work when it comes to creating a successful referral program. The key is to analyze your market so that your platform will attract the right customers.
There’s no doubt a basic affiliate program is a great asset to your business. It can help elevate your platform and broaden your outreach. BUT… it’s only the beginning. There are many other ways to use the power of referral marketing and that’s what this special blog is all about.
Are you ready to maximize your profits and level-up your game with referral marketing?
Read on to learn how to connect with your most loyal customers so you can inspire them to spread the word about your business, ensuring long-term success.
Yes. When it comes to leveraging the power of referral marketing, it all boils down to whether your business being Share – Worthy.
The goal is to encourage existing customers, thought leaders and influencers to promote your products/ services and recommend them to others. So, the better you structure your business to appeal to your target audience, and the more excited you get people, the easier it will be to launch your referral program.
Think about it. If your products and services don’t include a clear brand message that tells a potential customer exactly how they benefit from purchasing from you, you ain’t getting referral sales.
Remember, it’s not their job to persuade a prospect to buy from you – it’s yours.
The key is to get your customers excited about your message so that they are motivated to spread the word. There are many ways to do this. 1- Affiliate programs. 2 – Rewards or other incentives. Not to forget, creating an outstanding product or offering top service that stands out in the market, is in-demand, and solves a specific problem.
Whatever your strategy, you need to make sure that you focus on highlighting the benefits of your product or service. Spend some time working on a killer sales page while fine-tuning your shop or business landing page so that it offers a positive user experience. Project Media House specializes in building high quality sales funnels and landing pages for every niche.
Simplicity is key! Your potential customers should land on your page and get excited about what you have to offer. Your referral program should follow this same format.
Above all else, you need to make sure that your customers are happy and that they feel you are a quality provider. This is essential in generating new business and to persuade others that you’re worth recommending to their inner circle.
Under Promise. Over Deliver!
Recent surveys and stats suggest, 62% of people do a thorough research online before buying a product. They want to see actual customers reviews before pulling out their credit cards.
In addition to reading reviews, 90% of buyers rely on brand recommendations from known people. Try remembering last time you made a big-ticket purchase. You probably asked around to see what people recommended, right?
If not, you sure must have spent some time reading through reviews left by people who had already purchased that product. So, it’s super important to make sure that if someone searches for your product or service, they they see some great testimonials and positive reviews. You do this by over-delivering and providing the best user experience possible.
Every time a customer buys, you want to encourage them to share your product with others either directly or through their social media profiles.
Here are a few ways to get started:
- Customers love a discount. Or maybe you can even give them a gift in return for their feedback.
- If your customers are interested in boosting their Social media presence, offer to do shout-outs in return for a testimonial or share.
- Video testimonials created by satisfied customers can be instrumental in convincing new customers to try your products or services.
- Share positive feedback you receive on your business website as well as social media accounts. Give potential customers enough reasons to try your services.
Word of mouth is the most important part of any marketing strategy since 75% of people have little faith in conventional advertisements. Genuine endorsements from people they know or respect always gets the job done.
After every transaction, find a polite and non-salesy way to ask customers to tell their inner circle about their buying experience. New clients are four times more likely to do business with you if they were referred by a friend!
Network with Influencers
Social media influencers and thought leaders are, without a doubt, incredibly valuable assets in reaching out to new customers.
Influencers are people on social media with a strong following. Their followers rely on them for advice on what products they should and shouldn’t buy. For many influencers, this is a full-time job.
Social media influencers are very active on their pages, and they reach out to their followers on a regular basis. Here are the top 5 infuncer platforms::
In order to get these influencers to try your product and spread the word, consider sending them a free sample of your product. This may not be a great strategy for service based businesses but a few simpole tweaks will work.
Sampling is very popular in the beauty industry, where influencers are often seen recording themselves unboxing a product or trying a product they received and then leave an honest review.
Statistics show, 40% of people purchased a product after watching an influencer on social media who endorsed the product. Another statistic shows that 49% of buyers strictly rely on influencer recommendations.
That’s nearly 50% of all consumers!
If you haven’t done so already, you can try SHOUTCART with a small budget.
If you have long-term, repeat customers, go the extra mile to show your gratitude. Long term customers will get you loads of new clients if you show them appreciation..
Don’t focus just on the positive comments and reviews you receive! If you want to really grow, be diligent in reviewing your 5-star reviews right down to the 1-star reviews. This way you can improve on weaknesses in your business.
Be open top negative feedback and constructive criticism too. Use this feedback to improve your products or services.
Timing. Timing is Everything
A majority of customers will share their experiences immediately after they have made a purchase, IF they are directly asked to do so. Why? Simple… they’re excited and happy, which is your perfect opportunity to introduce your referral program to them.
Not only is this a great time to give them the opportunity to become an affiliate, but it’s often a good time to ask for feedback on their overall buying experience.
Note: A customer who just bought a product may not be able to provide feedback about that product but they sure will be able to provide feedback about their overall buying experience.
Are you encouraging reviews and feedback for your product that you can then use as social proof for your sales pages and referral program?
It’s surprising but many businesses fail to reach out and ask for feedback from existing customers.
Don’t be that guy!
By connecting with your customers and asking for feedback, you’ll be able to generate testimonials that you can use to promote your product or service. So, don’t be afraid to ask!
Another advantage of asking for feedback is it makes your customer/ client feel important. It demonstrates that you care for them as a customer and that you’re not just about making a sale.
When it comes to collecting this information, you can use automation tools to cut down your workload and streamline the process.
Project Media House offers you lead generation and management where your leads are nurtured till they convert and leave a 5 star review on your site.
Click here to watch a FREE DEMO
Here are a few DIY ideas:
Create a survey that asks for pertinent information about their buying experience. Keep the survey short and simple. Too many dumb questions and you lost him/ her.
Focus only on questions that will help you identify potential issues and thus help you make improvements accordingly.
Hopefully you’ve already incorporated a newsletter or mailing list into your sales system so that you’re collecting customers’ information and following up with them.
You must add value to your mailing list by loading an autoresponder with a sequence of emails that work towards building relationships with your customers.
At some point, you can set an email that asks for feedback. Make sure you set this up in the early stage of your sequence but not the first email.
For best Autoresponder, Click here.
Incorporate an Affiliate Program (Works mostly for product based business)
Tell your existing customers about the benefits of your referral program. Some benefits can be receiving a discount on their next purchase and even better, earning money from sales generated through their marketing.
Have you ever heard of the Net Promoter Score (NPS)?
It’s a ranking system built on surveys. The higher your NPS score, the more likely you are to attract new customers through referral marketing.
Once you start calculating your NPS, you can build your own survey simply by using a tool like Survey Monkey
All you need to do is simply ask them, “On a scale of 1-10, how likely are you to recommend our services to friends or family?”
You can then categorize responses according to NPS fact-sheet. With NPS, a score of 0-6 is considered detractors, 7-8 are passives and 9-10 are promoters.
A great way to use NPS is to take things one step further. After someone completes your survey, just segment responses so that only those who submitted a score of 7+ are redirected to your affiliate program where they can sign up to promote your products.
If you have a team, you can also have customer service rep promote your referral program at the end of positive phone calls.
With your referral program, it’s important to notify your most loyal customers first. These are the people who would appreciate a reward for their loyalty. They’ll be more likely to refer you to friends and family.
Tweak Your Referral Sign Up Page
First, make sure that you are transparent about the T&C’s of your referral program and all that it offers. There are a many scams online, so customers are justifiably cautious while participating in a referral program.
End of the day, they are spending their precious time promoting you and risking their reputation when recommending your products and services.
This means your sign-up page should be very clear and easy to understand, leaving no room for misunderstandings.
Here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Outline the T&C’s of your referral program.
- Highlight the benefits of being a part of your referral program.
- Be transparent on when payment is remitted and how.
- Choose a reward they will be most interested in.
- Keep the process simple. You don’t want to complicate the sign-up process.
For example, a referrer gets X for every lead and Y for the first sale
Follow up and more follow up( without being pushy)
Good customer service is KEY to every successful company. Whether it’s on the phone, online, or via a text message, customers want to be taken care of. If you want them to refer new customers, you need to provide them with awesome support.
One of the leading factors of quality customer service is to be responsive. If a customer files a complaint, contact them immediately to resolve it. Many people take to social media instead of calling a company, too.
For example, an upset customer might reach out to your Facebook account to complain. All it takes is a few seconds to reply.
Stay on top of all social media comments from customers, and make complaint management your top concern. Most customers understand that stuff happens, and they’re more likely to refer you if they know you are committed to resolve their issue.
Train your customer service reps to be sincere when dealing with every client. Make sure they communicate clearly, in a professional tone, and are never too salesy.
You can also set up a ticketing system for support. This system allows each complaint to go through a transparent process to ensure every single complaint is resolved.
Above all else, remember that most people always remember how you made them feel. Strive to create a positive experience.
Innovation can get you ahead of your competition.
No matter where your business stands, there’s always room to grow. You can drastically improve the number of referrals simply by being innovative and offering something new – something your market is missing. For instance, now it’s lock down stage in most countries. If you’re a Physical therapist, offer Phone consultations and Free shopping on rehab products.
Remember, there’s almost always a solution to a problem.
Developing a new product/ service doesn’t have to be as big as making a new kind of phone or car. Minor adjustments work great.
Pay attention to the needs of your target audience. What are some products and services that people are requesting? What complaints do they have about current products?
Meet those needs and you won the battle.
Offer Additional Incentives
One great way to jump-start your referral marketing is to offer existing customers with additional discounts and reasons to refer at the time of purchase.
For example, consider offering a coupon code or special discount in exchange for that customer sharing their purchase with his/her friends via social media.
Groupon & Dropbox did this very well by offering large discounts for every referral a person made via social media. If it’s worked for them, won’t it work for you?
We all win when we all win!
Maximizing exposure and reaching new customers is really easy with referral marketing. You must start by creating a referral program with clear terms, requirements, payment options and benefits.
Then, make sure to pay those incentives immediately. If offering cash rewards, set up an easy to understand delivery schedule and stick to it.
Make sure to promote your referral program on every channel possible, including via social media, your website, newsletter, on receipts and in follow-up emails.
Don’t hesitate to ask existing customers to join your referral program. Happy customers who continue to purchase from you often make the best affiliates. This is because they know your products and have personal experience with your business. They trust you.
Reward and also recognize your top affiliates. Provide additional perks or rewards to those who work hard to acquire new customers on your behalf. Everyone like to be appreciated even if it’s a simple thank you note.
I hope this article has provided you with all the necessary information you need to become a 5 STAR referral marketing program.
To your success,
Project Media House – Ryan Roberts