We've seen a massive shift in the way businesses market online, especially when it comes to word-of-mouth. This is why it's crucial to leverage referral marketing automation to help marketers track, manage, and scale initiatives across the enterprise.
In today's hyperconnected world, both eCommerce brands and B2B organizations serve consumers that expect to engage with their brands, and create relationships beyond just e-mail or social media marketing. As marketers, it's important to activate customers with the tools necessary to share your product, service, and experience.
By baking this into your overall customer engagement strategies, you can start to harness the power of authentic word-of-mouth to drive a steady stream of high-quality referrals to the business, and grow revenue.
How do enterprise organizations start tackling referral marketing automation?
So while referral marketing for the enterprise can look and feel very different compared to smaller brands, the same reasons startups - like Airbnb and Uber - see smashing success also apply here.
Beyond a lift in awareness and engagement, enterprise companies that are leveraging referral marketing can actually drive revenue at scale. In fact, here's a snapshot of the revenue growth that our enterprise customers saw from their referral programs over a three-month period.
And just like with email marketing and website optimization, in order to truly use this marketing strategy to scale your overall efforts, businesses must leverage technology.
Here are 4 ways the enterprise can leverage referral marketing automation:
1. Partner With The Right Technology Provider
For the enterprise that has multiple brands, multiple product lines, and a multitude of word-of-mouth programs under one roof, it's important to partner with a vendor that can set your business up to scale and build on top of that. Let's say you move forward with a pilot referral program with one brand and you want to scale that across the business, how does that vendor partner handle this and help you do that?
2. Implement Technology Across the Business
Developing a new customer marketing strategy or improving an existing experience usually takes the coordination, buy-in, approval, and budget from just about every customer-facing team member, including marketing, product development, engineering,
design, legal, creative, etc. Which is why we recommend looking at these strategies across the board, taking the impact these changes will have for the full organization. For example, can the technology and strategy serve multiple lines of business, different product lines, or markets in different geographical locations?
3. Architect a Simple Process
The referral experience for your customers needs to be natural and simple to drive success. Finding a vendor partner who has the functionality to make the sharing process feel native with white labeling will make it feel like visitors are not leaving your site - it's all within the brand aesthetic. While it's important for the user experience to be seamless, it's also critical that the internal process is simple as well. Technology should enable your marketing team to make changes easily without relying on development resources. The right partner will ensure your marketing department has the freedom to
be extremely agile, make program updates, and changes in real-time.
4. Ensure Compliance and Security
For a lot of the enterprise brands, working with a vendor who can fulfill fraud, security, and personal information requirements is a top priority. It's important to ask the right questions around how data is stored, what information can be optionally passed through or not, and their privacy protection standards can go a really long way to ensure compliance and legal security.
At the end of the day, the goal of any word-of-mouth marketing program - enterprise or otherwise - is to drive activity, but that activity must captured and recognized in order to measure that success. An automated referral program takes less time to manage and gives more time back to optimizing and measuring and enables the business to be more successful.