Your guide to creating a great referral program

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A referral program is one of the best ways to get new customers for your business. By sharing information with your customers and giving them incentives in the form of discounts, you can build a trusting relationship with them⁠—which can lead to future sales.

There are a plethora of different types of referral programs that offer specific benefits such as boosting social media engagement or driving traffic back to your website and websites related to you. To keep your business competitive in this day and age, having a referral program is almost necessary. The online space is overflowing with businesses looking to make a splash, but this new way of marketing and advertising gives your business a way to reach consumers in a positive, non-commercial way.

Related: How to Bring Authenticity to Your Startup Marketing Strategy

How does referral marketing work?

Referral marketing works when potential customers choose your brands based on the opinions of your previous consumers. You are referred by your client to establish a relationship with your client. This gives you the chance to build a rapport and also ask for feedback.

You should do your research before starting your referral marketing program. You also need to analyze your target audience and their interests. You need to find the best way to reach them and introduce them to your brand and products. Your referral marketing campaign should be catchy, engaging, and easy for your potential customers to share with their friends. They must know exactly what to do to participate in the program.

Many referral marketing campaigns are regularly shared on social media platforms. You can get the audience through and boost your customers by sharing it on your socials.

Related: Want More Clients? Get quality referrals from existing customers.

When should you start investing in referral marketing?

Here are some signs that you should start a referral marketing program:

You offer a great product and service: If your product and service are great, optimized and competitive, you should start investing in referral marketing to attract new customers. Most providers believe that referral marketing is based on goodwill and there are no concrete reasons for this.Social and online presence: Since referral marketing is based on your customers and their contacts, a social presence will help you spread your brand more efficiently. If you’re not sure how to get started with your social media outreach, hire a social media marketing expert.If your customers are satisfied: If your customers are satisfied, they will do everything they can to share their experience and opinion. You can take advantage of this by building your brand and producing a better product.

If you decide to include a referral program in your marketing, you may be tempted to opt for B2B referral marketing as it is more effective. But there are significant differences between these two types of referral marketing, which will result in your business growing no less than tenfold. The main difference between B2B referral marketing and B2C referral marketing is that B2C targets end users while B2B targets the companies that are in the same field as yours.

The main reason behind this is that B2B requires a more solid relationship with the customer, which can only be achieved if the company and potential customers are similar. The first thing to do, if you choose to go for it, is create an offer to target businesses. Give them a discount or some kind of upgrade so that they will promote your product by giving it to their customers. Unlike traditional marketing, it won’t cost you anything and you’ll make even more profit from these referrals.

The second difference between B2B referral marketing and B2C referral marketing is the need for personalization. In a B2C situation, the customer is an individual and it is very easy to personalize a message for them. In a B2B scenario, the customer is an organization and most likely has many employees.

Tips to keep in mind when starting your referral marketing program:

Creating a simple path to reference: People are more likely to refer if they can do it easily. Make sure your referral process is simple and easy by creating an automated, self-service referral form.Have them actively participate: One of the best strategies to encourage referral marketing is to let your customers create their own referrals. Offer rewards and discounts for successful referrals.Use of social media: Social media is one of the best ways to spread the word about your business and services, and it’s also a great place to create a platform where recommendations can generate more interest in your business. Share the positive reviews and experiences of your customers on social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or LinkedIn.Use automation: People are becoming more and more dependent on technology. Automating your referral marketing campaign ensures that you can stay in touch with your customer base even when you are unavailable. This is a great opportunity to generate referrals via smartphones and mobile devices.

Related: 5 Referral Marketing Strategies for Professional Service Providers

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