Word-of-mouth marketing may be one of the most powerful forms of marketing there is. But the question is, how do you get your customers talking about you?
There are many ways to generate leads, but few more effective than customer referrals. People trust recommendations more than ever.
Per Ambassador, 84% of consumers say they either completely or somewhat trust recommendations from family, colleagues, and friend about products and services – making these recommendations the highest ranked source of trustworthiness.
Here are 10 ideas to help you get more customer referrals.
- Implement a Referral Program
Do you have customers that love your products? Then it’s more than likely they would be willing to refer their friends to you given the right incentives, like free shipping, coupons, a discount, or store credit. Whatever you do, just keep it simple.
- Create Authoritative Content
Content marketing may be a long-term strategy. But the payoff is significant. When people are looking to be educated, or when they’re still at the top of the sales funnel, they’re looking for content to connect with. If they fall in love with your message, it’s far more likely they will tell their friends about the great value you’re delivering through your blog.
- Send Gifts to Your Customers
There’s nothing quite like a well-timed, thoughtful gift. It doesn’t have to be expensive either. Gifts can open doors. They help you stay top-of-mind with your customers, and remind them of the good experience they’ve had with you. And if it’s something their friends are looking for, you can expect referrals. Creating branded merchandise like a recyclable bag, a notepad a hat or other products featuring your logo or contact information is a good strategy.
- Acknowledge Referrers Publicly
You need to build awareness for your referral program. So, if you publicly acknowledge those who’ve referred business to you, others may find themselves wanting to join in. You could talk about your referrers in your emails, on your social platforms, or even on your website.
- Send “Thank You” Notes
Send personalized messages to new customers. Follow up with older customers occasionally. A note of thanks can go a long way. It shows that you still care about earning their business and helping them with whatever challenges they may be experiencing.
- Educate Your Customers About Your Products
Your customers may know about one or two of your products. But do they know what else you have to offer? As you share more about your products, not only could it increase sales from your existing customer base, but it could also get them thinking about others who might benefit from your products.
- Curate Opportunities For Your Customers
Are there trade shows or events your customers would be interested in attending? Are other stores offering sales or discounts they would love to take advantage of? Can you think of other resources they could tap into? Many businesses hold tightly to their customers and don’t want to send them away to another business to get what they need. But in the long-term, this could lead to more people signing up for your email newsletters, or just simply trusting you to give them the information they need at the right time. And this will lead to referrals.
- Demonstrate Your Expertise at Conferences and Events
Book speaking engagements. Start sharing your knowledge and experience at industry events. If the content you share is valuable, people will respond. They may not become customers of yours, but they might know someone who would love to be. If you’re an authority in your industry, you can expect referrals coming your way.
- Publish Your Own Studies
What do you know about your industry that others don’t? What data have you accumulated? Publishing your own studies is a powerful way to attract more links to your website. This can open new markets and help you generate more business too.
- Demonstrate How You’ve Helped Your Customers
You could publish quotes and testimonials on your website. You could also publish case studies. There are many ways to demonstrate the results you’ve helped your customers achieve. This increases your credibility. If your customers know what you’ve helped others do, they may want to tell their friends too.
Show initiative. No one can participate in a referral program they don’t even know about. You don’t need to be aggressive about asking for referrals, but you should make people aware of what’s available.
Thank you to ZoomShift for this blog contribution. ZoomShift is employee scheduling and time clock software for part-time employees.
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