18 Different Channels You Want Your Customers to Use to Share Referrals
A study by the American Marketing Association says – “prospects that come from peer recommendation, are more responsive than any other marketing channel”. In general, referrals are most commonly seen through word of mouth marketing. However, in the modern era, people spend a lot of time on electronic and smart handheld devices such as laptops, PCs, phones, and tablets. A wide range of options is available through which referrals can be shared.
Implementing a referral program can have a powerful impact on the customers’ buying decisions. People trust recommendations from friends or acquaintances far more than content received from marketing programs. Benefits of referral marketing are galore:
– Referral leads convert more
– Referred customers spend more
– Referred customers stay longer
The mode of sharing referrals can be segregated into two parts – Online Channels and Offline Channels. In this article, we will discuss in detail regarding the different channels the customers may use for sharing referrals.
Let’s talk about the Online Channels :
1 – Email
Email communications are convenient and a cost effective medium to reach out to many people. Customers can share referrals via email without any hassle. In fact, many brands implement email marketing as a strategy to increase brand awareness. With emails, they tactfully encourage the target audience to share referrals with the help of CTA (call-to-action) buttons.
2 – Facebook
Facebook is one of the most popular social media networks, which claims to have billions of users. With such a big number in mind, brands aggressively promote their products/services on this platform. People are also prone to share the referrals with their connections quickly.
3 – LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a renowned platform meant for professionals to build connections. With the increase in the number of registered users, businesses also use it to promote their brands. Large numbers of referrals can be shared via this platform.
4 – Twitter
With the help of tweets, customers can share referrals and it has the power to reach billions of people within a short span of time. Interaction regarding various products/services is made over here.
5 – Blog
The topic of Blogs can be of various types. We often come across blogs which talk about any particular product/service and how it can help those who are in need of similar offerings. Companies spend time to write blogs and so do the people where they share their feedback and views. This happens to be an effective channel of sharing referrals.
6 – Guest Post
Guest posting is about writing and publishing articles in 3rd party website or blog. There are several open blogging channels available where people share their thoughts and ideas along with referrals.
7 – Website
Many people have their own websites. In fact, websites are more common for companies. B2B referrals and affiliate marketing play an important role in sharing referrals.
8 – YouTube & Vimeo
Video marketing can be used for everything from building customer rapport, to promoting your brand, services, and products. People make videos about products/services and share lots of stuff related to those. It can be a discussion of the features, user guide, benefits, and much more. Referrals can be drawn and shared in this medium.
9 – Online Chat tool
Now a day, online Chat tools are in demand and people are using it vigorously to an optimum extent. Tools like WhatsApp, Facebook App, Gtalk, etc. are ruling the internet. While communicating through these mediums people try to share referrals, which help the brand to achieve enough awareness and also generate new leads from customer referrals.
10- Online Forum
Forums are generally open platforms where people discuss and share their views. Participating in online forums can be an effective activity to give and receive customer referrals.
11 – Review and Rating
Especially in eCommerce business, reviews and ratings hold a great importance in the decision making process. The nature of the reviews holds trust and generate confidence in the mind of the buyers. Good reviews generally act as referrals, which instigate the people to go for a purchase.
12 – Online Portal
Several online web portals provide the options of sharing referrals. Customers can use them and avail worthy rewards from the various referral programs. This form of marketing has become very effective where both the parties (customers and the 3rd party sites) get the benefits from the actual company which is winning the business from new leads.
13 – Affiliate Marketing
In affiliate marketing, the brand advocates might not know the referrals personally and they also might not be your customer. The primary condition for referring your brand is reward-motivation which occurs at B2B level. In simple terms, Affiliate marketing is more of a partnership than a relationship.
14 – Social Networking
Social media appears to be gaining acceptance among small business owners. And why not? It’s free to use with a gamut of features and benefits. Companies are maximizing their social presence and providing good customer service. It’s also a brilliant medium for sharing referrals used by customers thoroughly.
Let’s discuss the Offline Channels :
15 – SMS
Text messaging through mobile telephony services is a medium which is used by customers for sharing referrals. In fact, many brands are not leaving any stone unturned and they are promoting via SMS service nowadays.
16 – Telecommunication
People call up and talk to their friends, family members, and acquaintances. During the conversation, they often tend to make referrals if the person whom he/she is talking to is looking for any similar item.
17 – Event
In social gathering and events, people get to meet their friends, colleagues, and acquaintances. These occasions can be utilized for sharing referrals related to a brand, product or service.
18 – Consultancy
Specialized persons offer consultancy on various domains. They can be termed as Influencers and brand advocates and their words carry a lot of value. People come to them for expert advice or opinions. Referral programs, recommendations, and affiliate marketing work well in consultancy.
Referral Channels are instrumental in improving your business’ customer acquisition efforts in the current digital age. The criteria that lead to a referral program bringing a large number of relevant leads are the satisfaction of the customer in relation to the product or service, as well as the relevance of the referral program itself. Keeping this in mind, NextBee developed a methodology that aims to improve referral programs. The application of this methodology is to ensure that every participant is approached in a way that leads to increased conversion of referrals and leads. Known as the PACE Methodology, it covers the following aspects:
– Personal : Building personal relationships through active collaboration for increased positivity in responses.
– Adaptive : Adaptive to the needs and expectations of individual customers and target groups.
– Controlled : Strategy and design that incorporates analyzed data to promote effective response.
– Exciting : Ensuring that the customers find your program interesting and exciting, so as to reduce monotony and improve response.
For a complete referral process re-engineering and a fresh implementation of a referral program, NextBee is the perfect option at your disposal. To get more insights and ideal solutions to your business needs contact at