To promote the brand and increase the sale of products and services of a company, a marketer uses different strategies to maximize profit. Though most of them give rich dividends, many marketing strategies are prohibitively costly at the same time.
However, when it comes to a cost-efficient approach to market your brand, one strategy stands out. This is ‘ customer referral ‘ marketing.
What do you mean by customer referral?
Let me explain - customer referral simply means promoting or advertising your brand by word of mouth or through reference. In online parlance, we can term it as ‘ viral marketing’
Even though it sounds easy, customer referral marketing is not a cakewalk. You must learn to both keep your existing customer base happy, as well as at the same time induce them to spread the word about your product and services to their friends and family.
You should try to devise a really strong application that will motivate your customers enough to take some efforts to spread your brand’s awareness. The incentives you offer should be in the form of a tangible program like offering heavy discounts, or free products, etc not in kind.
Getting a new business or customer through referrals is one of the most cost-efficient marketing approaches, as it involves minimum spending on the part of the marketer. Additionally, there are also high chances of conversions through referral marketing.
But simply giving your free products or heavy discounts to the existing customer base is not enough. You need proper planning to implement a customer referral.
Let us go in-depth -
- Goal - Before going ahead with your marketing efforts first decide on your goal. What is your goal in creating this referral strategy in the first place? Clear in your mind and start cracking ideas for this strategy.
- List the possible sources of customer referral - Your existing customer base plays a central character in this endeavor. If your customers are happy and satisfied, they automatically become your brand advocates and would readily spread a word around regarding your brand. Hold them tight.
- Devise a plan to reach out to your prospects - Plan your strategy properly. Every customer doesn’t have to be targeted for the customer referral Do detailed profiling of your customer base and then devise a plan of whom to include in your referral program.
- Narrow down on what incentive to offer - Not all customers are induced by monetary rewards, so you need to think wisely when narrowing your incentive offer. Most of the customers prefer something that gives them value instead of a hard cash incentive. Think of some non-monetary incentive programs that will really benefit your customers over a long period.
- Guide them - guide your customer properly of how the referral program works. Keep it straight and simple, make it easy where the customer doesn’t have to rack their head the requirements of the program. If the incentive program is complicated they will lose interest.
- Keep a track - whatever strategy you implement at the end of the day, you have to keep a track of it. You need to keep a proper record of these referrals so you can properly pay out incentives to your referrers.
- Thank your customers - Don’t forget to thanks your customers. A simple thank you goes a long way to make the customer feel valued.
We can easily say that including a customer referral strategy in your marketing plan will balance the cost of your advertising. Additionally, at the same time it is a great optimization technique to generate leads for your business for low costs.