Getting referrals to your business is a great way to earn qualified leads and conversions. These referrals are even more valuable when they come from happy customers.
Getting these referrals also doesn’t have to be expensive, or the result of third-party marketing efforts. Your business can grow its own referrals through digital marketing. As our blog series has discussed so far, the expense you pay for third party referrals like Yelp is unnecessary (and can be excessive). Digital marketing, instead, can help you earn referrals for less.
But how, exactly, does digital marketing get you referrals? Here in the third part of our blog series we will look at a few strategies that can directly contribute to more referrals for your business.
Engage with your followers on social media.
Social media is an ideal place to earn referrals for your business. Free to use, it offers access to almost any target audience you desire. With multiple platforms from which to choose, it also gives you the chance to occupy the channel that is the best fit for your particular business.
Once on social media, your best strategy is to remain engaged with your followers. Social media is not a soap box where you can talk about yourself all the time. Instead, it is an online place for genuine interactions. Make it your commitment to create these interactions with your followers.
Reply to comments.
For example, make an effort to reply to comments left on your social media accounts. While you do not have to respond to every one, you should be interacting with the conversations people are having with and about you.
Comment on other people’s social media.
You should also take the time to comment on other people’s social media accounts. Remember, it’s not all about you, but, if you make the effort to build relationships, you’re going to be the one they recommend to their friends and family.
Respond to negative comments.
No matter how awesome your business is (and we know you are pretty awesome), negative comments will always be a part of your social media life. Fortunately, you can combat their negative effect by making it a priority to respond to every disgruntled customer. Keep it polite. Keep it friendly. Take the conversation private as soon as possible, and see how quickly you can turn negative experiences into referral-winning encounters.
Promote positive customer testimonials.
If you are doing your job right, you will naturally win over some pretty happy customers. Do not allow all that positivity to go to waste. Get testimonials from happy customers and put them online.
Earning these testimonials isn’t hard. Happy customers will often take to review sites, social media, and your customer service department to register their pleasure. Simply ask for their permission to put these glowing reviews on your website and/or social media accounts.
You can also get these testimonials by asking for them (but don’t pay for them!), or by asking for permission to write up a case study on some of your most successful projects. Once showcased on your website, they will serve as effective referrals, telling new customers just how desirable and trustworthy your products and services are.
Provide excellent free content.
People love free stuff. If you want to use digital marketing to increase the number of referrals you get, try tapping into this passion for free materials. In particular, give away free content to your target audiences.
Free content keeps people happy about your brand, and it gets the word out about your business. For example, that podcast might become a talking point between friends. A blog post might be shared across someone’s social media network. That email offer might spark a shopping trip with friends.
You could even consider giving away white papers, training materials, or webinars. Rich, relevant materials position you as an expert in your field while making people feel good about your brand.
When giving away content, focus on excellent material. Write informative blogs. Do that podcast on a topic of interest to your target audience. Offer an email discount on a popular item. The more you offer great content, for free, the more likely people will be to think about and talk about your business.
Digital marketing has the ability to get people talking about your business. You just need to implement the right strategies in the right ways. To that end, we encourage you to reach out to Distinct Web Design.
We can give you some incredible digital marketing strategies that help you earn referrals, more effectively and less expensively than through other methods. Give us a try today.