Did you know that over 2.4 billion brand-related conversations happen in the United States every day?
Intriguing isn’t it? This illustrates that people aren’t reluctant to speak about their experiences with businesses, which flicks on a thought-flow regarding what you could do to swing such conversations in your brand’s favor.
I mean, the numbers show that 83% of people rely on the opinions of friends and family to make their buying decisions. Based on such data, you sure don’t want to bank on your marketing sales strategy efforts alone.
To take advantage of the obvious power of word-of-mouth marketing, a lot of companies are swaying towards customer referral tactics as a way of boosting customer sharing. This allows such businesses to connect with super-qualified prospective customers.
Referrals trust people they know more than they’ll ever trust any advertising method you can think of. Plus, they’re a lot more affordable to acquire.
So I will show you several ways to break your company into this space using this list of 6 ways to make your brand more referable.
1. Take Advantage of Success Milestones
Your best referrals will come about the moment your customers have encountered the value your product or service delivers.
You wouldn’t ask your employer for a raise right after failing to achieve your monthly target, which is why it wouldn’t be effective to request referrals when your product is under-delivering on the value promised to the customer.
A brilliant way to set yourself up for success is to keep your customers updated on the positive results they’ve achieved by using your service or product. By seeing such results they’ll be eager to spread the word about your brand.
This begins with a proper onboarding system, so customers are aware of the expectations they should have and the timeline and input required to reach it.
After that’s done you can then consider connecting referral requests with client success milestones. If you’ve just informed a customer that your product assisted them in boosting their monthly revenue, you can easily ask them to refer you to a friend or colleague.
But if you fell short of your predicted expectations, put a hold on your request.
2. Provide Existing Customers with Templates
When you’re requesting referrals, it’s crucial to note that your current clients are already busy. Instead of asking and hoping that they make the time and come through, you can be proactive.
Consider eliminating the mundane tasks for them. They may not have the time to craft an email for outreach, so why not offer them a template that they can fix up in seconds and send to prospects?
To help you out here’s a sample email templateyou can use to get started:
I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned it previously, but I’ve been partnering with [Your Brand] for some months now. In my last conversation with their representative about our partnership, I realized they’ll be a perfect fit for your needs.
[Referral Name], checkout [Your brands representative’s name, website or social media profile]
[Your brand’s representative’s name], meet [Referral, social media profile]
I think I can leave the rest to you two.
With such a template, your current clients just have to fill in names and hit send.
3. Include a Customer Loyalty Program
Loyal customers are most likely to be the people who refer businesses to your brand the most. Show that you acknowledge them by creating a loyalty program that rewards such individuals for advocating for your company.
This system can be in the form of premium membership or even point-based, and you can extend it well beyond customer referrals. Regardless of how you carry it out, ensure that your clients feel valued as they’ll be more bent on helping you.
4. Run a Referral Program
Running a referral program is a superb way for you to show your customers you’re confident enough in your product or services to consider a referral program as a worthwhile investment.
People will see this confidence and feel secure to share your company’s information as you have an organized structure in place.
The great thing about a referral program is that you incentivize your customers to refer people in a structured way.
Since no one enjoys working for free, you can solidify the deal and ensure that your customers ransack their networks for quality referrals by offering them mouthwatering rewards. For example, you can use a personal email finder to send emails and tell your customers about referral rewards.
Whether it’s cash, Amazon or Starbucks gift cards, discounts, or a free product, give something valuable to your customers for sending you warm leads.
With these programs you just set and forget. Customers get rewarded automatically based on the parameters you set. You can even identify advocates who are pulling in high volumes of referrals using the service and contact them to create unique promotions.
5. Put in Place Different Advocacy Avenues
If you get a “no” when you ask customers for referrals, your first response should be to back off and let them have some space. It’s unnecessary to know why they’re declining, and you would want to maintain the mutual respect of the relationship.
But after some time, you can reach out to them with a fresh approach by suggesting that they can advocate for your brand without the need to refer people. By serving as a case study, submitting a testimonial, or penning down a review.
Such low-effort actions by your clients will still send potential fresh leads to your business and won’t risk damage to your relationship with the customer. Ask them what’s their preferred method of sharing and try to find a place to fit in their positive feedback on your social media touch-points or your website.
6. Share Your Informative Resources
A recent research revealed that the average B2B buyer now engages with 13 pieces of content per month.
This implies that before your current leads became customers, they were not reluctant to consume all the informative resources you put out. This puts a profound emphasis on the necessity of tactically distributing your content to make sure it gets to qualified prospects.
Since your potential customers are consuming your content, including a referral “Share this piece with a friend” link on your thank you pages or automated email offers could help you get across to the potential customers.
Making it a breeze for customers to share your information resources to their connections before they close will ensure you stay ahead of the game.
7. Use CRMs to Boost Referral Retention for Effective Advocacy
A CRM tool is used in boosting satisfaction by keeping track of the client’s entire journey.
But did you know that by using CRM tools you can increase your client retention rate by up to 27% if your business uses such tools collaboratively between marketing, sales and customer service teams?
One of the most vital factors in becoming referable is that prospects sent your way by advocates end up as clients. CRM tools make achieving this easy.
For instance, when a prospect from an advocate calls your service agents, your support team can acquire data from the interaction. They can record the goals and needs that the prospect has and send this information to your sales team.
The sales team then uses such information to nurture such prospects into making data-driven purchases. And it doesn’t end there, after you’ve nurtured them into making sales, the CRM helps you to keep the referrals as clients via stellar service.
If, for example, a particular referral contacts your service team for an inquiry, your support agent can pull up their client profile in the CRM. With this, the agent can know what service or product the customer possesses, how they frequent your business, and how long they’ve been clients.
This helps your team identify referrals at the risk of churning or opportunities for upselling.
Word of mouth marketing is essential to the real perception people have about your brand. People seldom take the word of an advertisement these days and value the opinion of a friend or family member a lot more than any ad campaign you could execute.
So, rather than leave such a vital marketing avenue to chance, you can be proactive and influence your customers to speak positively and refer people to your brand.
However, people won’t recommend just any brand, so you need to be referable and the tips outlined in this piece will help your company achieve that.
Over to you!
About the Author
Emmanuel Egeonu is a writer for ReferralCandy and CandyBar, two software tools helping small and medium businesses generate more revenue through referral marketing and customer loyalty programs.