Tips for a Successful Refer-A-Friend Program

When someone is in need of a specific product or service, this individual often asks a family member or friend for a recommendation. In some cases, a person might instead go through online reviews to decide what to buy or which company to support.

A referral occurs when one person tells another to check out a particular business. Word of mouth can help businesses of all sizes in any industry. Having a refer-a-friend program is an excellent way to bring in new customers.

Even if you already know that this kind of program can be helpful, you might be wondering how to implement it for your company. The good news here is that the sky is truly the limit. There are tons of ways to structure your refer-a-friend program to ensure customers want to sign up all their friends. We’ll be sharing a few of them below to give you some inspiration to use while you hammer out your own platform.

Implement Giveaways or Customer Contests

When you offer a contest or give something away, it can push customers to provide you with new leads. A contest could be set up where referring a certain number of friends is required to win. This can be anything from getting several signups for a beta or membership or providing lists of potential customers’ emails.

Make sure the contests you run prioritize referring high-quality leads. This can be done if you base the entry on conversions instead of the number of referrals. Rather than handing over emails to enter, a customer would need to convince friends to use your product or service. This rewards customers for bringing in leads that will convert.

Try Setting Up a Fundraiser

A fundraiser is another excellent option to get refer-a-friend off the ground for your business. It lets you connect without specifically involving your services and products. People who are interested in the cause you are supporting will see you as more than just another business. It shows that you have the same values as the potential customer.

Fundraisers also make a great way to bring in referrals since customers can share the fundraiser with their friends. As additional people participate and donate, you’ll create a database of leads who have the same values as your brand. This gives you an in to start communication with the leads. Once the time seems right, you can move that conversation in the direction of the products and services you provide.

Create Campaigns by the Season

Are you planning to start your refer-a-friend program near a holiday or other special day? If so, a seasonal campaign can boost the referrals that come in to you. New customers can see annual sales, discounts for holidays, and other long-term deals that can be used no matter what season it is. If you get in the groove and start having these campaigns on a regular basis, customers will look forward to them. This is a great way to keep a captivated audience and bring in new leads.

Consider Referral Discounts

Some customers will respond best to a return on their referrals, which you can give them in the form of discounts based on the leads they bring to you. Since it’s more expensive to acquire leads than to keep them, the money you spend on the discounts will be easily made up if you manage to convert the leads that are sent your way. Sometimes you have to spend money to make money, and this is one of those examples.

Host Exclusive Events

Everyone loves to feel special and nothing is better for that than offering an exclusive event to someone. When you host events that only members of your refer-a-friend team are allowed to attend, it can bring in new leads and make your existing customers happy.

One option is to choose an event and then hand out extra tickets so your customers can invite friends along to learn more about your business. Rather than having them come to your store, the event can be something more casual and less focused on selling your products and services. For example, let members of your refer-a-friend team come to a company event where there’s far less pressure than visiting your store.

Introduce Loyalty Levels

While it can be fun to offer contests and fundraisers, it’s also a lot of work and not something that can be done every week. A more efficient option is to make your referral program set up so that customers are motivated to introduce new people to your brand time and time again as months and years go past. This can be done by incorporating loyalty levels that reward customers as they refer and move up.

Every tier in the program needs to be unique and have special benefits so that customers want to continue moving up the ranks. With this sort of refer-a-friend option, customers will continue to be motivated to bring in new leads. There’s no need to have promotions or contests as often when you choose this method.

Get Involved with Social Gifting

Keep in mind that customers are much more likely to offer you referrals if it doesn’t feel like they’re being manipulated into it. For example, when you send out an email that says something like “refer three people and get 10% off,” customers are fully aware of what you are trying to get them to do and may be less likely to follow the instructions.

Rather than using the method mentioned above, try an offer that rewards current customers for sharing a coupon instead. The customer gets the chance to offer something nice to their friends and gets a reward when the people they know redeem the offer. This is an excellent way to reach out to more people quickly.

A refer-a-friend program is a great way to bring in leads and create new customers but using some of the tips above will ensure your success. Try out the opportunities that stand out to you and see where they lead you. You might be surprised how much they can improve referrals!

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