Did you know that 74% of consumers identify word-of-mouth as a key influencer in their purchasing decision? To put it simply, customers value share-worthy experiences and have gotten used to passing on good news to others.
Thanks to increasingly digital audiences, brands can take one look at online mentions and social shares to see just how customers feel about them. But today’s data-driven, insight-seeking brands understand that it takes more than good customer feedback to bring in more revenue.
That’s where referral marketing comes in.
What could be better than authentic, enthusiastic referrals from customers? An automated marketing platform that makes it easy to significantly scale and track referral programs. In fact, modern marketers are increasingly seeking ways to build reciprocally rewarding relationships between brands and customers.
So how does the age-old tradition of word-of-mouth fit into the modern marketing mix? And what does any of this have to do with your bottom line? We’re happy you asked (and your customers will be too).
Inspire customers to share via word-of-mouth
One of the simplest, but most often overlooked ways to drive referrals is to simply ask your customers to refer your brand to their networks.
Make better use of your email list and incorporate contacts into your automated referral program. Next, comb through the digital touchpoints that your customers encounter and include eye-catching, informational messages that lead them to your referral marketing program.
This proactive referral approach should be applied to positive in-person customer interactions as well. Don’t hesitate to include offline customers in your automated referral marketing program. After all, real word-of-mouth is the root of a successful referral marketing strategy.
Your existing customers (and future brand ambassadors) will mimic the way you promote your referral program when it’s their turn to give referrals, so set a shining precedent.
Build a rewarding experience
In a perfect world, your customers’ excitement about your brand would surge through each of their social networks and attract an endless stream of equally enthusiastic customers. Sometimes the real world requires a little more coaxing. That’s where incentives come in.
When is the last time your business lent its authoritative voice to another brand for free?
Never? Exactly. If you want your referral program to spark a truly rewarding relationship, then don’t make referrals a thankless job for your customers.
Think about what’s standing in the way between your products and your customers’ willingness to share. Then choose rewards that your customers really want and automate the payment process.
Trust us, your incentives must match the effort that it takes for customers to attract referrals in order to have an impact.
Influence measurable results
Once intrigued customers have made the leap to being brand ambassadors, it’s time for your company to go into results overdrive. What’s the point of adopting a leading channel for customer activity and interaction without bringing in the analytics and optimization to match?
The best way to continuously improve the ROI of your brand new referral marketing strategy is to analyze its results and make informed changes. Is a particular segment of ambassadors not meeting your expectations? Is the offered incentive causing this segment to underperform?
Referral programs are designed to teach companies more about their business and their customers, all while untapping new revenue. The most successful referral marketing programs evolve based upon brand ambassador activity and campaign strategies are optimized accordingly.
Get ready to turn your customer base into new revenue
Who knew that existing customers and their referrals could offer so much valuable insight and pave the way for more high quality leads? Well, we did. As successfully converted customers become brand ambassadors, word-of-mouth is swiftly becoming a coveted marketing channel for some of today’s most innovative brands.