Among all marketing strategies at your disposal, a referral program pulls much weight and is also cost-effective. By utilizing this marketing strategy to promote your products and services, you will boost sales, increase customer base and brand awareness.
However, there are many marketers making marketing blunders that end up affecting their output. When you follow the wrong route in referral marketing, your business will experience stunted growth and, worse, no traction. This marketing strategy always comes down to trust.
When customers trust your business, they are likely to invest in your products and services without batting an eyelid. Since recommendations are coming from someone they know and trust, it makes the conversion rate pretty high.
As a marketer, here are some dos and don’ts of referral marketing you must know. By knowing these essential tips, you will attain success in all your referral marketing endeavors.
Dos Of Referral Marketing
1. Offer Valuable Incentives
A common mistake made by most marketers is offering ridiculous incentives that potential affiliates don’t need. If you must achieve your marketing goals and objective, you need to know and understand your target affiliates.
That way, you can tell what incentive appeals more to them.
But if you don’t know your customers or your potential affiliates, finding out the stimulus that will attract them might become a problem. Most businesses offer discounts, gifts, or perhaps exclusive offers that help customers to spread the word about their products and services.
By using the right incentives to attract customers in exchange for a referral, you won’t have issues recruiting customers as affiliates. You can take a peep at what incentives your competitors are offering, as it might give you an idea of what to offer.
Ensure that the incentive isn’t one that will break down your business. A good rule of thumb is always to offer what your business can afford. In other words, it doesn’t have to affect your business’s revenue, as that might negatively affect your business’s growth.
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2. A Good Marketing Software
In referral marketing, the success of your campaigns most times lies in your marketing referral software. If you must have the best marketing experience, there is a need to use a good affiliate marketing software to get the job done.
When you use unreliable referral software, monitoring your performance or that of your affiliates becomes almost impossible. For the best referral software, the best at the market is OSI Affiliate software. With this robust software, you can monitor your customers and disburse rewards.
This affiliate software beats numerous others in the marketplace because of the customer support and incredible reporting features. No doubt, the insights provided by the reporting feature will help you to improve your campaigns for the best result.
OSI Affiliate is a top leading software with a 14 days trial. With this, you can determine if the software is the right fit or not. Based on the numerous reviews, there is no doubt that you’ll love this software for your referral purposes.
3. Build A Relationship
Referral marketing only works when you’ve established a relationship with your customers. That way, they can always recommend their friends and family through word of mouth or links.
When you build and maintain relationships with customers, they are most likely to recommend your brand on multiple occasions.
There are numerous ways to build a relationship with your customers, and they could include:
- Sending periodic emails
- Birthday wishes
- Regularly updating your social handles
- Responding to customers queries
- Conducting giveaways or contests
- By improving the value of your products, etc.
When you’re able to maintain a positive relationship with your customers, you won’t struggle when it comes to getting them to recommend your brand.
Unfortunately, most marketers rarely develop a relationship with their customers. Due to this shortcoming, they find it hard to get their customers to become part of their referral program. It is paramount to stay in touch with customers, and you can use numerous online tools to do that.
It could be through social media, email marketing, or simply sending bulk SMS. When there is a new development, or perhaps you added a new product line, you need to keep your customers in the know by updating them through their preferred channel.
By always being in touch with your customers, you will get people to do affiliate marketing for your product. That way, they become passionate customers ready to recommend your brand to more of their social circle.
4. Plan Promotional Activity
By effectively planning your promotional or marketing activities, you will maximize results and get more reach. A common strategy is often social media, through sponsored ads offered by your preferred social media platforms.
For instance, Facebook allows you to run ads for your business and have them run on Instagram also.
That means you can create an ad copy and have them run on numerous channels powered by Facebook. Another incredible way is to encourage customers to generate content about your business. When your customers check in on your establishment and post pictures of their activity, they can attract their online followers.
When you plan your promotional activity well, you will discover the appropriate medium and way to request customer participation in your marketing strategies. Who knows, they might become marketers just for their love for your business, not necessarily for the rewards.
But when you begin your promotional activities without first planning on how to recruit your customers into the game, you find yourself missing the needed traction.
5. Target Your Best Customers
One of the dos of referral marketing is to target your best customers. These customers that have been with you from the beginning are ideal for referral marketing since they know a lot about your establishment.
No doubt, these customers are more likely to leave reviews, even recommend your products and services without your efforts. When these sets of customers are part of your referral marketing, the result will be monumental.
Please don’t make the mistake of recruiting new customers into your referral marketing, as it always backfires. Since they are new, they are yet to understand your business’s mission and goals. So, trying to recruit them into the team will be a mistake.
Your best customers are your best bet since they give your business the needed push to reach more customers and opportunities. Your best customers understand the reason for the existence of your business, including the goals and mission. Unlike new customers, they can give a detailed review of their experience.
Due to their immense knowledge about your products and services, getting new customers is often not challenging. Since they are customers, potential customers are more likely to take action.
Don’ts Of Referral Marketing
6. Don’t Make It Difficult
Referral marketing is not supposed to be complicated or cumbersome for your customers. If that happens, you discover that your conversion rate will dramatically drop. From signing up to making an order, every proceeding leading to the last action should be comfortable and smooth.
Aside from the signing up of new prospects, ensure you have set up links for your site. Also, make it possible for customers to refer people from numerous channels. That means they should share on WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, etc. without any additional procedure.
When building your business website, ensure that your website’s load speed is impressive, with a clear navigational panel that aids for a smooth experience on your website.
However, reverse being the case will negatively impact on your conversion rate. No one wants to dwell on a super slow website or, perhaps, takes forever to sign up. By making these processes easy for prospects or customers, succeeding in referral marketing becomes possible.
7. Don’t Overlook Your Data
In every marketing strategy, there is a need always to monitor your progress or data. It offers you the luxury to determine progress and even tweak your campaigns for a better result. Some tools will help you in this regard, like Google Analytics.
When you implement this tool in your business website, you can always monitor your referral channels and your best performing customer. The insights provided by Google Analytics will help you to tailor your marketing campaigns to areas where results are more pronounced.
Google Analytics is a powerful tool that businesses will find very beneficial since it gives information such as devices customers are using to access their website, geographical location, age range, page views, etc.
Data from Google Analytics will help you to optimize your referral program to be more specific to your target market for more sales and referrals. According to numerous marketers, GA is a powerful tool that helps monitor any marketing campaign’s progress.
In case you want to re-market to abandoned carts, using abandon cart software could be a trick that will prove useful.
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8. Don’t Generalized
For an incredible result, it is essential to personalize all your approach. Instead of addressing your customers or affiliate as you would to a crowd, it is better to manage your customers by name or to use some sales data from their previous purchases.
When you personalize how you interact with your customers, it makes it more likely for your customers to take action on your offer. When customers are recognized, either through name or by their previous order, it makes them feel valued.
When they feel valued, they are most likely to spread the word to potential customers about your brand. After the ordeal, do not forget to thank your customers for their patronage. It would help if you did this every time there is a new order or referral.
Through this, you build a stronger relationship with your customers. There are lots of email automation tools that you can use to achieve these tasks. You don’t need to send these emails individually to all your customers.
Through incredible tools like MailChimp, you can send personalized emails to your customers when they take specific actions. Most of these email automation tools aren’t free, but they offer value since they help you stay in touch with your customers.
9. Don’t Forget Mobile Devices
The majority of your prospect or customers are on mobile devices, which is why you need to ensure your website is responsive. If you’re not a web developer, do work with a reliable agency or individual who can create a responsive website for your business.
That way, mobile users won’t struggle when it comes to using your website. If you already have Google Analytics installed on your website, you will discover that 60% to 80% of your users are mobile. It further proves the importance of making your website mobile-friendly.
When you do poorly in this regard, you will find yourself losing tons of opportunities. When it comes to the dos and don’ts of referral marketing, you should make mobile responsiveness a top priority. That way, you will reach more prospects and referral marketers.
Most referral program examples have one thing in common – they are built with mobile users in mind.
10. Don’t Discard Your Loyalty Program
If you already have a loyalty program in place, you shouldn’t discard it because of the referral program. The fact is, such an implementation will help you to streamline your referral rewards easily. It also helps identify your best customers, thereby making them the ideal candidates for your referral program.
If you want to achieve exponential growth in your business, you can combine the two options and watch as engagement rise to an incredible height in the chart. Based on numerous studies, millennials tend to favor loyalty programs since they are pretty dynamic and offer more rewards for purchase.
A referral program is one of the best marketing strategies that promise lots of results for digital or online marketers. If you’re looking for a way to boost sales, increase customer base, and more, then you need to use the right referral software and tool for a smooth experience.
When you finally set up this marketing strategy, don’t set up and forget like most marketers often do. There is a need always to monitor progress and make adjustments based on data from Google Analytics.