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- Referral marketing is the most trusted form of advertising.
- The best way to increase the rate of referrals is through the creation and implementation of a referral program.
- To create a successful referral program you must provide worthwhile incentives, make the program easy to use, and make sure your customers are satisfied.
Like many contractors, you probably get most of your business through referrals. One satisfied customer tells another satisfied customer and so on, allowing your business to grow exponentially. However, are you really getting all you can out of referral marketing?
Referrals are a cost-effective way of advertising your business. Giving satisfied customers an incentive to tell others how happy they are with your work is an easy way to get even more business. Like anything, there’s always room for improvement – so we’ve created a quick guide to jump start your referral program.
Why Referral Marketing Works
Referral marketing is the most trusted form of advertising, which makes it effective as well as cost-efficient. Customers know that a friend or an acquaintance is not receiving payment to promote a product or service, which makes their opinions appear more genuine. What’s more, the trust that customers transfer through referrals results in higher amounts of money spent, which can have a considerable impact on the profitability of your business.
Building Referrals Into Sales and Marketing Efforts
Many small business owners just assume that referrals will happen naturally. While this may be true to an extent, putting forth a concerted effort will drastically increase the likelihood of occurrence. Establishing a referral program is an easy way to accomplish this. Simply mentioning that you have one, along with including incentives in your brochures and other marketing materials, will make customers take notice. Statistics show that about 83 percent of customers will be willing to use a referral program if they are happy with your services, provided they are aware of its existence. To encourage participation in referral programs, simply implement the following tips:
- Provide Worthwhile Incentives. Give your satisfied customers a good reason to make the effort to provide a referral. Incentives can include perks such as discounts or credits on future purchases of services or products. To determine what you should offer, take a look at the websites of your competitors and then either meet or beat the offers that they have. Coming up with something creative and new will draw customers to your business.
- Make the Program Easy. The program needs to be as simple as possible to use, otherwise, your clients won’t use it. When designing the program, think about the elements. Are the forms easy to fill out, or is there a lot of information required? The more complicated they are, the less likely your customers will use them.
- Make Sure Your Customers are Satisfied. No matter how good your products or services are, make sure that your customers are happy because if they aren’t, then you won’t be able to get any referrals. Although it’s easy to create a program, no one will participate in it if they are unhappy. Focus on customer satisfaction first and foremost to ensure that you will have customers willing to be part of your referral program.
Publishing customer testimonials on your website is another way to use referral marketing. Client testimonials help give credence and authority to your brand and can help alleviate any potential doubts they may have. Whenever you receive a review from a client, or a referral, make an effort to reach out to them and ask if they would be willing to share their testimonial on your site.
Above all, referral marketing strategies won’t work if you don’t provide a quality service. Doug Ashy can help make sure that your customers are satisfied with your work by providing you with all the tools you need to succeed. Stop by one of our stores today to shop from our exhaustive list of construction materials and equipment.