Building a Business Referral Program
The main goal of any business is to gain customers and retain them. While gaining new customers is always a plus, without the effort it requires to keep customers coming back for more, even an endless stream of new customers will not help you to build your brand and will continue to be a serious source of loss capital when it comes to marketing and sales dollars. The point in advertising and marketing isn’t just to rake in new customers, but to do what needs to be done to keep them happy and fond of your business’s products or services.
- One method for keeping customers coming back is to create a functional business referral program. As long as you keep several important elements in mind when creating your program, you should have a program custom-tailored to your business that is flexible and can grow as your company does.
- A company will know that they have the best business referral program when customers are consistently thrilled enough with a business’s services that they tell others about their experience with it. This word-of-mouth sharing is usually done because a customer has been provided more value than they expected when using your services or products. Make sure every customer who utilizes your business is blown away by the services received.
- Another method of creating business referrals is to offer unique products, offers or experiences that no one else is currently offering. If other quick lube businesses provide magazines and a droning TV to keep waiters entertained, make sure your quick lube station offers free snacks, babysitting for busy moms and dads and unique entertainments.
- If you create a business referral program that includes rewards, make sure that your rewards are appropriately moderated to not be a detrimental loss of capital for your business. Before launching your business referral program, double-check to make sure the program isn’t so generous that it eats up the profit you gain from those new sales.
- Keeping that in mind, your rewards should still be substantial enough to garner attention for your business and brand. It can help to make the reward contingent on a purchase so that they are beneficial to you and to the consumer.
- Avoid business referral programs that are based on luck, such as lotto ticket style rewards. This can lead to consumer perception that there is no winning ticket and can lead to bad news for your brand.
The best business referral program may be difficult to perfect but will be well worth the profit and increase in new customers.
Christian Fea is CEO of Synertegic, Inc. A Joint Venture and Referral Marketing firm. He exemplifies how to profit from Joint Venture and Referral relationships by creating profit centers with minimal risk and maximum profitability.
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