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"teleBIZZ has been an important response partner to BP over the last 5 years. We have relied on their IT expertise and professional, friendly call centre team to develop and expedite an efficient reliable response strategy for mobilizing the BP Regional Emergency Response Team for the Europe Africa and Middle East region."
Bruce McKenzie
BP Crisis & Emergency Response Manager
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Marketing Hints and Tips

The Formal Referral Strategy

Could you be sitting on an untapped source of wealth?

Do you know how much it costs you every time add a new customer?

It is actually quite difficult to work out the true costs. For example one of our marketing methods is the use of Google Pay per Click. In theory this is relatively easy to work out the customer acquisition cost - but only to a point.

When we try to cost in the sales management team and IT time involved in the process, evaluating the true costs becomes much more difficult and it certainly bumps up the costs.

Some customers will always refer your services to others if the subject comes up, but generally there is no great motivation to keep referring clients.

Most companies never even give you a 'thank you' when you do, as they probably don't always know that you were the source of the new business.

With a formal referral strategy - everyone is a winner:

  • Your happy customer knows what remuneration or benefit they will receive from you and be highly motivated to proactively think of people who may benefit from your service. We give 'call credit' to every customer who recommends others, which brings their monthly call costs down. Most of our business now does come in from referrals.
  • Your new customer will be much happier trusting you with you with their business knowing that you have done a good job for someone they personally know - so much more powerful than relying on testimonials from people they don't know.
  • You will add a new customer for a fraction of your normal acquisition costs.
  • You will build up much stronger loyalty with your existing clients and increase your customer retention rates. Saying thank you and rewarding them is great for building strong long term relationships.
  • It is inexpensive to set up and administer.

Here are some ideas to consider when designing a Referral Strategy:

  • Number One - Reward your customers well for their referrals - Send them gift vouchers, free gifts that they will value, discounted services or offer them money off future purchases. This will build strong relationships and increase the likelihood of multiple referrals.
  • Keep it simple and easy to understand from your client's point of view.
  • Keep it simple to run and easy to track on your own systems.
  • Test and measure different offers to see which ones give the best return on your investment.
  • Make sure you thank people quickly and pass on their reward in a systemised and consistent manner. Always do what you say you will quickly, otherwise it will backfire and do more harm than good.
  • Remind your clients regularly of the benefits to them - on your website, in newsletters, on invoices, on emails etc. They will quickly forget about your referral strategy without regular reminders.
  • If you have valuable information on your website that will help other businesses too, add a 'Send this to a friend' link at the bottom of the page (see below as an example). This link will spread your message for FREE and increase the amount of people visiting your site.
  • Prepare some material that you can give to customers to pass on to others. Flyers, brochures, bookmarks, mouse mats, anything that may be relevant to your type of business. As long as your company name is all over it, you are marketing your business at a targeted referred audience.
  • Keep a list of the customers that have referred others and record how many they have referred - You can use this information to target your gifts and promotional material to the right people and give your best supporters that little bit extra.

Referrals are a brilliant way to grow your business and your profits.

It is such a simple process and can have a dramatic affect on your growth - If one of your customers referred 2 people, then they in turn referred 2 people and so on - just imagine what that would do to your bottom line in a relatively short space of time.

And what's more - all this extra business is practically FREE!

Action Points:

  • Design a brand new formal referral strategy or take a fresh look at your existing one.
  • Remind your existing customers regularly in every communication you have with them as well as on your website etc.

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