Get Ambassador marketing delivered right to your inbox!

    How To Use Referral Software To Build A Powerful Customer Marketing Program Blog

    How To Build A Powerful Customer Marketing Program With Referral Software

    5 minute read

    Interested in initiating a customer-focused referral marketing plan or growing your existing program? You're in the right place! We're true believers that your happy customers are your most direct partners in your growing success, and their authentic advocacy is worth its weight in gold...and ROI.

    So how do you leverage your customer base in your existing marketing strategy?

    By enrolling customers as brand ambassadors in your referral program, you empower them to refer your company to others. With a referral program, your brand can connect with those customers that have a personal connection to your company and aren’t afraid to tell everyone about it.

    More so, your marketing team probably has an image of the ideal buyer persona. And since birds of feather tend to flock together, your customers most likely have a network of friends and family that match that persona. Once they start sharing your brand, you will have insight into data and real-time activity gathered to guide future campaigns.

    This is where referral software comes in. Developing measurement, management, and analytics functionality in-house for an automated referral marketing program is certainly possible, but it requires a laborious process that typically involves many internal departments, especially your technical development team. In addition to the internal infrastructure and tools necessary to scale your referral program, it will most likely require significant investments of time and resources in managed manually.

    Okay, let's say you're passed the building phase. Once a program starts to scale, most manually run referral programs are not prepared to track and manage the activity generated, measure results in real-time, and actually deliver the incentives promised.

    How to build a customer marketing program with referral software Image 1

    Without the right systems in place, tracking and rewarding referral activity can be a nightmare.

    And with no visibility into measurement and optimization, you’ll fail to gather critical insight about customers and prospects that could improve your broader marketing strategy.  

    Running an in-house referral program isn’t as easy as companies like Uber and Airbnb have made it look, yet many B2B companies and consumer brands are still scaling their referral marketing efforts.


    By leveraging technology to automate the activities that would otherwise drag a manual program down. As a result, these referral programs are able to drive high quantities of qualified leads, new customers, and revenue.

    How to Automate a Customer Marketing Program
    With referral software, you can easily attribute new sales activity to the appropriate people in your program, fully automate campaign logistics (i.e., issuing payment, activating disengaged program members, creating/sending communication, etc.), and quickly integrate other third-party systems to seamlessly sync data between your internal platforms.  

    Why is this so important?

    By automating the referral marketing process, you remove much of the complexity, tedium, and guesswork from running multiple campaigns with many segments. Ultimately, automation allows your brand to scale this particular customer acquisition channel while freeing up your team’s time and resources to focus on the things that really matter — executing efficient, measurable, and profitable campaigns that, over time, positively influence every aspect of your marketing strategy.

    5 Steps to Automate Your Customer Referral Program 

    So let's dive into how to automate and scale your referral marketing strategy. Your brand can easily create a repeatable process to continuously attract new and loyal customers with these five simple steps.

    How to build a customer marketing program with Referral software Image 21. ENROLL: Make it easy to join your referral program

    Easily enroll people into your referral program via dedicated landing pages and pop-up forms directly on your website. With automation, once you have their information, you can quickly drill segment your database according to specific criteria.

    How to build a customer marketing program with Referral software Image 3

    2. ENGAGE: Connect and communicate with program members

    One of the trickiest elements is engaging with program members without having to ask your email marketing or customer success team to step in. With referral software, you can engage and nurture your program members without ever having to leave one central platform or using additional resources.

    How to build a customer marketing program with Referral software Image 43. TRACK: Custom links & share codes for cross-device tracking

    Measure and monitor important activities like shares, clicks, conversions, and commissions earned and paid. This data also allows for better attribution and performance tracking.

    How to build a customer marketing program with Referral software Image 54. PAY COMMISSIONS: Incentivize and quickly reward customers for referring

    If you’re generating hundreds (or thousands) of sales from affiliates a month and don’t have a way to automate conversion payments, your affiliate strategy will become a drain on your marketing resources.

    How to build a customer marketing program with Referral software Image 65. OPTIMIZE: Always be improving your program

    An effective customer referral program should generate incredible insight into new customer behavior, prospect motivations, and channel preferences. Use software to monitor key performance indicators while optimizing your program to drive revenue.

    In essence, your aim is to help your customers help you. While not every customer marketing program or referral software will yield the same results, there are some steps you can take to set your brand’s program up for success.  

    What could be better than authentic, enthusiastic referrals from customers? Referral software that makes it easy to significantly scale and track new leads and sales. That's why brands that leverage customer referral programs are building reciprocally rewarding relationships between their brand and customers.

    Download The eBook

    Posted in Referral Marketing

    Amity Kapadia

    Written by Amity Kapadia

    Amity Kapadia heads up content marketing at Ambassador. When she's not writing a blog post, editing an eBook, or reading copy, you can find her watching Real Housewives.

    Subscribe To Our Blog

    Stay informed about the latest referral marketing trends, tips, and insights.