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Expanding your business's customer base and cultivating strong relationships with existing customers are key objectives for any business owner. However, crafting a marketing campaign that captivates your target audience can be challenging, leaving you feeling uninspired at times.

This guide covers a cost-effective strategy that can accomplish both of these goals: affiliate marketing.

What are the essential KPIs to look for in marketing campaigns?

It's no secret that marketing campaigns are crucial to acquiring new customers, boosting sales, and increasing business revenue.

Three elements are vital in crafting a viral marketing campaign:

  • Messaging
  • Positioning
  • Tone of voice

Here is a brief overview of each element in the B2B world.

1. Messaging

A well-crafted message communicates the value of a product or service. Also, it must show how the product:

  • solves that specific problem or
  • meets a particular need.

The secret sauce to achieving this is identifying and researching your target audience.

You can identify your target audience by developing buyer personas and ideal customer profiles. You can up your messaging game by capturing the intent signals of target audiences by knowing who is ready to buy in the market.

2. Positioning

Customers must see how your unique value proposition sets you apart from your competitors.

Here are some tips for effective business positioning in B2B campaigns:

  • Identify how your business adds value to your target audience and what differentiates you.
  • Post-defining your unique value proposition and audience, emphasize your strengths in the message.

3. Tone of voice

The tone of voice refers to the way in which a brand or individual communicates and expresses themselves through their choice of messaging.

  • Clear, concise, and jargon-free language should be used in B2B marketing campaigns.
  • All marketing channels should align with the brand's values to maintain consistency.
  • Increased engagement and referrals from the target audience reinforce the brand's identity.

How to retain and acquire customers with referral marketing

Referral marketing is a deliberate and structured marketing approach that encourages existing customers to refer new customers to a business.

It typically involves incentivizing customers with rewards, discounts, or other benefits for successfully referring others. You can also use QR codes to enhance referrals by providing a streamlined way to share referral links, track them, and measure campaign success.

Referral marketing programs provide a systematic way to track and measure customer referrals, enabling businesses to actively drive and manage the process.

91% of B2B purchases are from the influence of referral marketing. 

And there’s no one-size fits all approach to crafting your referral campaign. Your program must fit into the entire strategy, be it a tiered program or a contest for referrals.

Would you be willing to refer your friends to your business if you were a satisfied customer? Referral rewards maximize word-of-mouth by motivating customers to refer their friends and family.

Benefits of referral marketing

The benefits of referral marketing go beyond getting new customers. You keep your business at the forefront of your customer's minds by building solid relationships with your most loyal customers, thus creating a strong foundation of new customers.

For example, you can give shout-outs to existing members on social media and show your appreciation for their support. Public recognition can go a long way in keeping your customers engaged and referring.

Are you interested in setting up a referral marketing program but not sure where to start?

Although the ideal program will vary depending on your business and market, some tried, and true best practices can help you get the most out of your referral marketing efforts.

4 referral marketing strategies for your business

Here are some referral marketing strategies that we've found to be especially valuable:

1. Use email marketing to engage with referral sources

How do you get more referrals for your business? Referrals only happen. While providing excellent products or services can generate some organic word of mouth, you'll need to ask for referrals if you want a steady stream of new customers. You can use email marketing automation software for managing all your email campaigns and getting the analytics and reporting of your campaigns.

The best time to ask for a referral is when your customer is already happy with your products or services and your brand is fresh in their mind. For example, if a customer has recently left a positive review or praised your business on social media, that's a perfect opportunity to ask for a referral.

Mailmodo developed an email strategy that worked wonders for their referral campaigns.

  • First, they started with a referral email nudge right after the participant joined the campaign. This helped them start on the right foot and encouraged them to refer others immediately.
  • Next, they followed up with a weekly referral nudge to all participants and updates on where they stood on the leaderboard. This keeps them engaged and motivated to continue referring more people.

The best part of their email strategy is using referral widgets in interactive emails. These widgets allow participants to fill in referral information from within the email, making the referral process even more accessible and seamless.

2. Nurture customer relationships

To succeed in referral marketing, you need to have happy customers. While good products and friendly customer service are expected, going above and beyond sets your business apart. You must exceed their expectations if you want your customers to refer to their friends.

HubSpot's referral program offers a $500 credit to customers who refer a new customer to the company. The new customer also receives a $500 credit. 👇Check below to see how it’s done.

3. Leverage online communities

You want to keep your brand at the top of your customer's minds. What can you do to increase its value?

Creating a community around your brand effectively achieves this and gives your customers a reason to share. Luckily, you can foster a community around your brand in several ways.

One way is to produce compelling social media or blog content that sparks many comments and conversations. Another is to try different prompts and contests encouraging customers to share user-generated content featuring your products.

For example, Salesforce built a strong community of users and developers around the globe by sharing ideas and finding answers through hot discussions across different time zones.

4. Reward referrals

Even if customers like your brand, they might need more than that to refer others actively. What might help? A referral incentive can get people talking. And the incentive doesn’t have to cost a lot – or be paid in cash.

Hootsuite offers a 30-day free trial of Hootsuite Pro to the referring user and the new user who signs up through the referral link.

As we know that a referral email is a powerful tool for encouraging your satisfied customers to spread the word. Let’s see the no-miss pointers when creating referral email templates.

How to create an effective referral email template

Creating an effective referral email template involves several key steps:

1. Write an attention-grabbing subject line

Tailor the content to the user’s specific relationship with your business.

  • Include a compelling incentive or benefit to make irresistible subject line that entices the recipient to open the email. For example, mention rewards, discounts, or exclusive offers.
  • Use words or phrases that create a sense of urgency or pique the recipient's curiosity. For example, "Limited time offer," "Exclusive invitation," or "Don't miss out!"

2. Personalize the email

Create a sense of familiarity and personal connection.

  • Use the recipient's name in the greeting to make the email feel more personal and less like a generic message.
  • Let the recipient know who referred you to them and why they thought your product or service would be a good fit for their business.

3. Test different email variations

Test different elements and variations to optimize their effectiveness.

  • Ensure your opening line establishes relevance so the recipient continues reading. It's better to focus on them instead of introducing yourself. For inspiration, here are some examples:
  • Referral Example #1:I found some frustrated reviews from [[Company]] about [[Platform]] deployment on [[Source]]. Are you looking at any alternatives right now?
  • Referral Example #2:To discuss expanding your offering with our power solutions, I have invited [[Referral_Name]] the [[Referral_Title]] of [[Company]]. In light of the growing demand for portable power across industries, you might also be interested in a conversation.
  • When crafting an email, it's important to sound natural and approachable. You don't want to come across like a robot, after all! Keep things simple and jargon-free or overly formal language. Instead, use casual language and contractions to make it feel like you're having a one-on-one conversation with the recipient.
  • For example, you can say something like "You must be dealing with..." or "I'm sure you're familiar with...". This shows that you understand their situation and are willing to help.
  • Connecting with them is important when you're trying to get your message across to someone. One way to do that is by telling a story that resonates with them. You see, people tend to remember stories more than they do facts and figures. When discussing a solution you have to offer, try to weave a narrative around it. For example, you could tell a story like this:
  • For example,"Have you ever heard of my friend who works as a pediatrician in {State}? She's always complaining about how hard it is to provide mental/behavioral care for her patients. She's constantly juggling medication management, finding providers who accept referrals, etc.

3 Sample referral email templates

These referral email samples make it easy for you to ask satisfied customers for referrals, driving organic growth and maximizing the impact of customer recommendations.

Referral email #1

Subject Line: Request for Assistance - [Name]Dear [First Name],My name is [Your Name], and I am the head of business development at [Your Company]. Our recent launch of a new platform provides [One-sentence pitch].I am keen to speak to someone from [Company] responsible for [Handling something relevant to my product]. From my research, you might be the right person to connect with or guide me in the right direction.I appreciate your time, and I would like to request a brief fifteen-minute call on [Time and Date]. This call discusses how the [Company Name] platform can specifically benefit your business. If you are unavailable, please direct me to the appropriate person to speak with.Thank you for considering my request. I look forward to hearing from you soon.Best regards,

Referral email template #2

Subject Line: Want [insert metric from case study]?Hey [first name],[Main pain point] is challenging. [Mention additional prospect's pain points.]I get it—and I might have a solution.[Your business name] helps [target audience] [benefit you deliver]. We've helped companies like [current customer names] reach [insert specific metrics].I'd be happy to connect and discuss how [your company] can help your team [service you offer.] Do you have 15 minutes tomorrow or the next day?[Include a link to schedule a call]Thanks for your time,[your name]

Referral Email template #3

Subject: Join the Fun: Interactive Referral ChallengeDear [Friend's Name],I hope this email finds you well! I wanted to reach out and share an exciting opportunity with you. I recently discovered a new product/service that I absolutely love, and I thought you might be interested in trying it out too.But that's not all - the company is also running a referral challenge with a fun interactive element that I think you'll love. Here's how it works:Sign up for the product/service using my referral link [insert link here].Complete the onboarding process and start using the product/service.Earn points by completing various tasks such as inviting friends to join, leaving product/service reviews, and sharing on social media.Climb up the leaderboard and compete with other users to win exciting prizes, including cash rewards, discounts, and more!I'm already on my way to earning some great rewards, and I think you'd enjoy the challenge too. Plus, the product/service itself is really fantastic and I'm confident you'll find it useful.So why not give it a try? Here's the referral link again: [insert link here].Let me know if you have any questions or need any help getting started. I'm happy to assist in any way I can.Best regards,[Your Name]

Wrap up

The above examples demonstrate how an enticing referral email marketing software can accelerate signups for your B2B company, generating positive momentum.

Remember, the key is providing exceptional customer service. Inspiring your customers to share positive experiences about your company is crucial, making your referral initiative a resounding success.

So, strive to offer the best customer service possible, and watch as your customers become enthusiastic advocates for your brand, bringing in more referrals and driving growth for your business.

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