Referral Marketing

How to Cultivate Power Users

Your most engaged customers are your Power Users. Give them a little love - it can go a long way toward turning your power users into your most valuable advocates.


A power user is someone who uses your product, who uses a variety of its features, and who is presumably having a really positive experience with your product.  A power user is someone who can become one of the fiercest evangelists for your brand.  

Power users can be tapped to share their personal experiences in your marketing campaigns, contribute testimonials, and participate in case studies.  Most crucially, users who have been identified as power users can be personally invited to participate in your referral marketing programs. Recruiting power users to become referral marketing ambassadors supercharges your campaigns to drive traffic to your website, boost sales, and attract more people who want what you've got.

You can find your power users in two ways.  One, you can create a customer experience culture where happy customers know exactly how to reach you if they have positive feedback. Two, you can deliberately seek out users who are having a positive experience.


(Does your platform adopt a different, perhaps friendlier term than "users" for the people who use your product?  For the sake of this blog post, we're going to employ the term 'user,' even if it can feel like a reductionist way to describe the customers who keep your business humming)

How do you know if you have power users?  And how can you harness their firepower? By making it really easy for them to reach your marketing team.


Prime your users to reach out to you

When new customers sign up for your platform or place an order, add an extra step to your process: a personal welcome email from your CMO, director of growth, or director of customer success.  Use a dedicated email from the CMO to welcome new users to your community in writing.  Use storytelling to convey information about your mission or your product. You can include a personal aside from the CMO discussing the unexpected benefits of using your platform or service.  Use messaging that explicitly says, "I would love to hear about your experience using our product," and include that person's email (or an email address specifically designated for customer feedback).  

we want your feedback graphic

You begin the customer relationship by making it clear to users that there is a human being who is easily reachable and wants to hear feedback.  You will be surprised by how many users will seek out this email address later when they want to share their own positive stories.


Use inviting language to solicit user stories

When you are inviting users to share their feedback, use high-energy language that cultivates a sense of excitement.  Consider using wording like this: "Are you having a positive experience with our product?  We'd love to hear about it.  We're always curious to hear how our product has impacted your life." Or, "Has our product surprised you or delighted you in an unexpected way?  We live for that feedback.  Here's how you can reach us."


Invent a customer experience persona

You can invent a persona to represent your company's efforts to solicit feedback and personal stories.  Does it feel a little weird to invent a person named "Alex Thomson" to be the face of your customer experience team? Sure. But having a consistently available "face" to receive customer feedback increases the likelihood that customers will want to engage and share feedback. We inherently have low expectations when we email an inbox named ""  Someone is more likely to reach out with thanks and praise to "Alex" with an email address like ""  Once you receive emails to this humanized general inbox, a member of your marketing team can reach out directly to say, "Hi, I received your email from Alex, thanks so much for reaching out," so there are no ethical lines crossed.

In the event that "Alex" receives customer service inquiries, you can create a workflow so someone on your team responds to provide information on how to initiate a customer service ticket or forwards the email that requires assistance to customer service.


Dedicate an email blast to seeking out power users

Send an email to your users announcing that you are looking to conduct interviews with users who are having a positive experience, so your company can lean even harder into what's currently working for people.  Your most enthusiastic users will probably leap at the opportunity to share their positive experiences in a brief phone call. If you want to sweeten the pot, you can offer gift cards to incentivize users to participate.


Have a "phone date" with potential power users

Assign a charismatic member of your relationship marketing team to schedule 30-minute phone conversations with respondents. Find out what users like about the product and whether they would recommend it.  This is an opportunity to hand-sell your power users directly on signing up for your Ambassador referral marketing program.  

customer service phone headset

Communicate to power users that the team member they are speaking with can be their direct point of contact at the company, who can field any questions or feedback they have about the referral marketing program and how to make the most of it.


Nurture your power user-Ambassadors

Keep a spreadsheet of all the power users that your team connects with throughout the year who sign up to participate in your referral marketing program.  Create a cadence of following up personally with these individuals quarterly.  Consider special perks and rewards for power users who are engaged in your referral marketing program: company swag, gift cards to popular retailers, or thoughtful experiences.

Use Ambassador's monitoring tools to see how your power users' metrics compare to your broader community of referral marketing ambassadors.  Odds are good that you'll see your power users driving signups, downloads, conversations, and sales. Whatever your end goal, finding and engaging your power users helps you get there.


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