Let’s examine some ways marketing is becoming more customer based through these positive customer referral program ideas.
For marketing and advertising programs, favorable imaging and connectivity with customers have always gone hand in hand. Aligning a product or service with a target audience has been, and is still, the overarching goal. In recent years, though, the omnipresent entity, which is the Internet, has begun to reshape how these connections are cultivated. In particular, how do existing customers generate new customers?
Favorable experiences and popular products are wonderful for business, but the real magic seems to stem from how these positives are shared between people, between business entities, and the overall synergy of referrals. Many times, a customer referral to a friend or associate will start a wildfire of popularity and commerce, yet emanates from only a spark. So, how do you fan these flames without appearing too salesy? Or too manufactured and contrived? As with the organic nature of a positive friend referral, the secret is your customers and business associates. They will drive sales. Sometimes they just need the proper incentive or method for sharing their favorable interaction. And maybe you need some fresh referral program ideas?
A critical component and first step for business success is having an enticing product or service. Simple, yet elegant, the right look and language to explain why your wares are invaluable will generate the initial customer referral momentum. Great customer service and a quality product will often sell themselves. Then, make sure you have consistency, meaningful follow-ups, and a system in place for helping customers easily share their positive experiences.
When discussing SaaS and your referral program, it’s paramount to consider the modes in which customers interact and communicate. Brick and mortar locations aren’t necessarily in decline, but it is definitely worth noting the popularity of online activity and internet-based business. Accordingly, mobile devices are one of the more popular modes for younger generations to conduct their business. It makes sense, then, to make it easy for reviews, recommendations, and referrals to be shared through mobile and online methods. Allowing customers to share their experiences, while still fresh in their conscience, maintains the chain of connectivity.
Sharing reviews and referrals can be quickly linked to numerous established online platforms. The networking for social media is rife for the referral game and should be recognized as the ever-expanding tool it is. Allowing customers an easily accessible outlet for sharing, often mobile-based, guarantees a certain amount of referral business will be generated with little work from the customer and greater return for your business.
In a perfect business ecosystem, online and brick and mortar business locations are both recognized for their strengths and are given room to grow, both independently and as a combined force. Organizations want options. There is also the need for more remote clients to receive products and services not available in their corner of the world. When both become available, positive voices swell. Referrals and positive reviews can reflect the goods as much as the experience and a smart designer or company understands the necessity of both.
Especially with regard to mobile business services and interacting with clients, marketers are beginning to capitalize on the built-in global positioning software available in mobile devices. When a business can advertise for specific markets, in specific areas, customers begin to inherently respond. Proximity or beacon marketing works off the idea that customers can be targeted by not only their preferences, but their perceived needs. In prior iterations of advertising and marketing, a customer or business based in, say, Florida, would not receive a CTA for a California-based company. With proximity marketing, the customer receives feedback and input, based on the here and now, no matter where they are.
Some customers crave a personal touch. Allowing for personal chats and feedback can dissuade a customer from looking elsewhere or changing their mind on a purchase because of a lack of buyers clarity. Equally, when customer interactions are personalized, the customers become more likely to build trust and loyalty. These are invaluable factors for garnering referrals and building your referral program.
If a customer understands that they will receive a ”thank-you”, either in the form of recognition or in actual savings, their likelihood for referrals to friends and associates grows considerably. Especially in the social media landscape, recognition can hold considerable importance for continued customer loyalty. Younger buyers, in particular, like to see their product endorsements and interactions show up in social circles. Organizations also understand the importance of free press and would be smart to cultivate such recognition. These “thank-yous” are similar to any other form of gratitude and should not be overlooked when considering referral program ideas.
Some customer interaction are specifically generated by calendar dates and holidays. Referrals often mirror these upticks in business. Identifying and implementing referral systems to gather customer support during these swells can often work as a jumping off point for campaigns in between such holidays and calendar events. Customers who see other customer reviews and referrals in higher numbers can also be driven to join in the referral business.
One of the necessities for successful customer referral programs and/or review system is to track customer data. Think exit surveys, but with the analytics to see real-time satisfaction and customer capture rates. Systems such as Net Promoter Score use customer ratings systems to predict future buying trends and brand recognition and satisfaction. They can also help streamline marketing tools and use reviews and referrals to drive your business. Customer metrics are also useful for designing your workforce and industry connectivity. Know your numbers to know your business.
When gathering referral numbers, it’s necessary to understand how they can be used within the context of your business. Our referral campaigns are designed to work with your business and your customer base to generate new leads, as well as recognize the great clientele group you’ve already attracted. Your customers have always been your number one asset and now you can have the tools to maximize their input and impact.