3 Types Of Referral Offers Every Business Needs
In this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast, I’m doing part two of a solo show series on where I’m going to be covering one of my favorite topics: referrals. You can catch the first episode of the Referral Generation series here.
One of the things I always feel the need to emphasize is that referral generation is something that should be baked into pretty much every angle possible. It’s not something that you do one time or one way.
So I’m doing a series on Referral Generation where I’m presenting what I’m calling the seven grades of referral fuel. In the first episode of the series, I introduce all seven approaches. In the second episode, I’m diving into the first point – why you should have referral offers for every client and what those offers should look like.
Topics I cover:
- [1:46] Why you should have referral offers for every client
- [2:48] The difference between direct offers, implied offers, and tangible offers
- [12:11] Tools to make referrals as easy as possible for people
- [12:44] Why consider building a funnel just for referrals
- [13:00] Finding ways to publicly thank people who give you referrals
- [14:17] The Referral Champions Program
- [14:43] Getting your best customers who already evangelize your business even more engaged
- [16:25] Having special, exclusive offers for your best customers
Resources I mention:
- The first episode in this series: 7 Approaches To Help You Generate More Referrals
- The third episode in this series: Grow With Your Customers By Serving Their Ecosystem
- A Helpful tool for getting people to share your content: Spark Loop
- Helpful affiliate tools: Referral Candy, Referral rock
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John Jantsch (00:01): This episode of the duct tape marketing podcast is brought to you by the HubSpot podcast network. Hey, I want to give a shout out to another member of the HubSpot network, the success story podcast, hosted by Scott, the Clair. It's one of the most useful podcasts in the world. Success story features Q and a sessions with successful business leaders, keynote presentations, conversations on sales marketing. Hey, and if you're a freelancer, his episode on how to make seven figures freelancing on Fiverr is a must listen to the success story podcast, wherever you get your podcasts.
John Jantsch (00:47): Hello, welcome to another episode of the duct tape marketing podcast. This is John Jantsch and I am continuing on my series about referrals. If you didn't catch the last episode on this, you might check it out. Referrals, generation episode one. This is episode two, we'll have them all posted once we've got them all recorded the so that you can listen to them all one time. But if you have a list of that one, I, I, I, in the first one, I talked a little bit about the rationale, why we do referrals, why we need to focus on this idea of referrals. So for today, I'm going to focus on two of the seven. What I call grades of referral fuel. In the first episode, I introduced to all seven of those. And in subsequent episodes, I will continue to go into more depth on each.
John Jantsch (01:41): So for today, I'm going to do number one. And number two, number one is referral offers for every client. Anybody who has done business with you should at least know that you want a referrals that you're open to referrals that you love referrals. So the real key there is to just find a way to simply stay top of mind, to remind them that, that there are ways to give you referrals dependent upon your business, what industry you're in. They may have the opportunity to refer somebody to you every day, or they may just, it may just happen once or twice in a year. For example, if, if somebody is buying a house or, uh, trying to find a remodeling contractor or something, it's not going to be something that's an everyday thing. So one of the real keys is that you stay top of mind by having some things that come into the home or come into the business on a regular basis.
John Jantsch (02:38): I like to talk about, uh, referral offers that you are going to put out there to your attire, customer basis, three types of referrals. So there are what I call direct offers. And essentially a direct offer is if you do X, you will get X pretty straightforward, some sort of reason to act some sort of maybe it's monetary. Maybe it's not. The second type is what I call implied offers. And this is just a way for you to show up in your client's life in, uh, in a way that they might share something. So they're not necessarily say you should, you should hire these people. You should buy from this company. And, you know, and I get X in many cases, there may be no actual motivation or, or compensation for the referral. It's just, you've made it very easy for them to, to showcase your work.
John Jantsch (03:33): I'll give a couple examples of each of these. The third one is, uh, what I call tangible offers and the idea behind this is that you send or give your customer something that they can turn around that has value that they can turn around something like a gift certificate or a coupon and tangibly hand to someone so that you are not only making it easy. You are actually giving them maybe something of great value that they can share so that, that in some cases could be a true motivation. So let me give you example of each of these. So a direct offer. Everybody's pretty much seen that. I mean, if you think about affiliate deals, they're kind of, Hey, you know, send somebody our way, use this referral link and you get 20 bucks. So it's essentially that. But I like to think in terms of, unless you have an affiliate program where it makes sense for you to have some sort of recurring revenue, a affiliate program, then I really like to get creative with these.
John Jantsch (04:30): And I think it's an, I think it's important that you tie it back to what it is that you do, but particularly if you're going to reward somebody in, in some cases, monetary rewards are appreciated. In other cases they're seen as well, gosh, you're only referring this person because you get money or you get paid and that's not, again, that's not everybody's motivation. So in some cases, they actually may be uncomfortable with that years ago, I was working with a remodeling contractor that essentially did very high-end upscale, remodels. And so when somebody referred somebody to them, that was worth a lot of money. So they basically had a standing referral fee of a thousand dollars. Some of their people would take it. Some of them would say, oh, just donate it to charity. I mean, obviously in some cases they, you know, they just said, no, I don't, I don't need that.
John Jantsch (05:20): That's not why I told my friend that they should hire you. I told them because you're awesome. So we tried to think of w you know, we still wanted to stay top of mind to give referrals. So we tried to think of something more creative. And so we came up with that offer that we called carpenter for a day. So they employed carpenters that did work. And so what would happen was when somebody would refer a customer, a new customer, they would earn the use of a carpenter for that entire, for entire day. So they'd create kind of a punch list of little, you know, tacky, little things that we all have around our homes that they just, it wasn't really worth calling somebody or the hassle of getting somebody to come out and bid it, whatnot. It was just like, no, here we'll, we'll take off the list under these parameters.
John Jantsch (06:04): And the thing about that was that, that they're, they're more upscale homeowners, you know, actually found that harder to get at a thousand dollars. It actually costs the company less than a thousand dollars to do that, to send somebody over for a day. So they found that it, it became a motivation because people thought it was fun. Oh, I finally got these things done. I mean, they would talk to their friends about, Hey, if you, you know, if you hire them, I get a carpenter for a day know, and, and it just sounded so much better than I get, you know, I get paid for it. So the lots of ways that you can make this worked for you. And in fact, in some cases, people have been very successful at, you know, refer someone and we'll donate X to a charity of your choice.
John Jantsch (06:51): That could be a motivation. That is if you do X, you know, you Y happens. So it doesn't always have to be a monetary reward to the individual. Some people feel very good about supporting a charity and that could be motivation enough. All right, the applied offer is a little more subtle and it probably doesn't work for every business. But the idea behind this is that that there's some sort of reminder. So again, let's go back to my remodeling contractor. They actually created when, so when they would do a project of a certain size, they would actually photograph the, before the, during and the after pictures, and then create one of those kind of nice coffee table, hardbound, full color books, that, that are pretty easy, uh, to, to, to get their number of companies that do those now. And you just produce one at a time.
John Jantsch (07:39): They were going to photograph the projects anyway for their own portfolio and further their own website. So it really wasn't much of a cost to go to the extent of creating this coffee table book. Now, the nice thing about it was last page had just a little bit of subtle information about, about the particular contractor. So if somebody was reading that book, they might think, oh, I'm going to call that. And the thing is this, you know, when somebody redoes their kitchen, they have people over to see it and why not go through? Here's what it looked like before. Here's how they had to navigate tearing out this wall and that wall, and here's the finished product. And so they were, it was something that the people appreciated getting, cause it chronicled their project, but it was also something that made it very easy for them to share their project.
John Jantsch (08:28): So consequently, it implied referral. Now there's lots of ways that you can do this as well. I, I had a, a real estate agent that would send out gift baskets to, you know, typical things. Somebody closed on a house, uh, but they had a subtle message on them that had a little hang tag that, that, that said, I'll go the extra mile for, you know, referrals. So just keeping, you know, top of mind keeping it so that when people saw that tag or saw, you know, who the gift was from. So lots of things you can do under that umbrella. All right. The third one, the tangible offer. I really like this one because you're not only making it easy for somebody you're, you're also giving them something of value that that's going to help incentivize. So it could be a gift certificate. It could be, you know, a product or a service be bonuses.
John Jantsch (09:22): So that, that kind of working in terms of referral. So once a quarter send all your customers a gift certificate for a hundred dollars and tell them, feel free to give this to any of your friends, neighbors, and colleagues, as you know, our appreciation is our, thank you. Now, one of the things, of course that makes that particular one work is also that they not only have the coupon or the gift certificate to give away that has a tangible value somehow a worded or, or structured. So that, that when they do, when this gift certificate comes back used with a new customer, that, that your customer receives something forward as well. In fact, those are kind of some of the keys, I think, to, to making these programs work. I think some of the best referral programs are ones where both parties win. So the person that they refer get something for it and the person who does the referral get something for it.
John Jantsch (10:22): And in way I think it, I think it adds a level of motivation because the person who's referring gets something, but it doesn't make it. So like the only reason you're vegan is referrals because you get paid the, the recipient or the person who they are going to refer also wins, or also get something in, in the exchange as well, some discount or some kind of new customer park of some sort. So I think that's a real key when you're thinking about designing these. Now, the second one is I love it. When you can creatively tie back to the brand, the carpenter for a day, it was certainly a great way to tie back to what the brand did, what the company did. And then of course, consistency. Just if you get something that's working at all, just think about this as a quarterly type of program, for example,
John Jantsch (11:11): And now a word from our sponsor with Q4 closing employee holiday travel and forecasting for 2022 underway, staying connected has never been more important. And HubSpot is consistently releasing new features to make your CRM platform more connected than ever with improved forecasting tools and custom report builders. See how your quarter is going, inspect new deals and use customizable data-driven reports to improve team performance. As you grow with custom behavioral events, you can track site behavior and understand your customer's buying habits all within the platform. And if you're looking for cleaner data with a centralized system, the all new operations hub enterprise gives your ops leads. The ability to curate data sets for all users, meaning even faster and more consistent reporting, learn more about how a HubSpot CRM platform can help connect the dots of your business @ HubSpot.com. It's a couple of tools that you might also consider. A lot of times the thing that stops people in some ways from making referrals is, is just a bit of work. So make it as easy as possible, you know, create a landing page that can send people to pre-write an email.
John Jantsch (12:26): So if you want somebody to introduce you to their friends, neighbors, customers, whatever it is, rewrite that remail obviously they can make it their own and they could change it, but it's going to give them a head start. And it's going to make sure that maybe the way you talk about your business is the way you want to talk to that. You might even consider building a funnel just for referrals. So if somebody refers people to you or somebody gives you introductions or makes introductions that you actually have some sort of nurture campaign. And then the last one, when people make referrals, find a way to publicly thank them. I mean, in social media, in your newsletter thought that kind of thing, because what it does is first off, the person who made the referral might think, oh, look, you know, I've been recognized, but it also sends a message that you want referrals and that you appreciate referrals and that you get referrals.
John Jantsch (13:19): All of those are actually, you know, really good things in terms of somebody else referring a couple other, uh, points. There, there are some tools out there getting people to share your content is, you know, don't under estimate the value of that in terms of a referral tools like spark loop, smart loop app spark loop app, make it really easy for you to, uh, have a little button so that somebody could share your, a piece of content, share your newsletter. And then, you know, maybe they win or they get some sort of awards for doing that. There's also all kinds of tools these days for affiliate referrals, you know, things like referral candy, referral rock, those might be tools that you might employ. Really what I would call kind of community referrals. Somebody doesn't have to be a customer. They, they may just be on your newsletter list, but that this, you know, a tool like spark loop can actually turn them into a referral source for you.
John Jantsch (14:14): All right. The second one I want to work on today is something I call your referral champions program. So the first programs that I was talking about it was really something you should be, you should be communicating to everyone, just, you know, even, even people that are on your newsletter list. But the second program is, is the people that are really champions. I mean, they, they evangelize your business already. They send you referrals already. They would do anything that you ask them to do. Certainly those, that group is a group that you should be understanding a lot about, actually think in terms of thinking church, treating them like a club almost so that you give them special appreciation, special perks, special events, special content of some short for that group. You also, I mean, that group actually might come to you. There may be somebody in that say, Hey, I want to refer you.
John Jantsch (15:06): What's the best way to do it. So, so create content for them. Testimonials reviews of find ways to get customers, those customers, to generate content, doing videos, testimonials, and things, doing case studies on some of your best customers is a great way to get that even more engaged. You know, they know, they know they go to your website and see a case study of the success you've had with them that just gets them more engaged. But there are some other things that I think you could do. You might just bring them together for lunch, believe it or not, especially in, in certain settings. Um, that's a networking event, uh, you know, for other business owners, for example, or even just individuals that live in, in a community that might be customers of yours, bring them together, just kind of creates a closer connection. Having them actually do some teaching on your behalf.
John Jantsch (15:54): So if you've gotten a result for somebody or a product of yours has got result for somebody having them talk to say a group of five or six people in a round table, kind of setting, talking about how they address the problem they were, they, they were trying to solve in their industry. You know, that's a great, it's a great way to get them engaged. It's very valuable to anybody that would attend and effectively is referral selling on your behalf. Don't forget exclusive events, exclusive offers. I mean, how many people put out that special offer only for new customers? Well, what about your best customer is about having a special offer just for them exclusive content, you know, maybe put, maybe build a, a, an advisory board for your business. You know, a marketing advisory board, uh, they're, they're not going to have any official duties necessarily, but they're going to be closed.
John Jantsch (16:46): You're going to be able to bounce things off of them. They're going to give you feedback. They're close, they're closer and closer to your business. All right. So those are one and two. So, uh, next, in the next episode, I will cover a couple more. And then in a fourth episode, we'll, we'll wrap up this series. So put all together, this is going to be effectively a workshop in referral generation dependent upon your business model or the type of clients that you're after. You will certainly be able to find something that appeals to your business and works for you. So keep listening, keep digging in and we'll catch you on the next show. All right. So that wraps up another episode. I want to thank you so much for tuning in and, you know, we love those reviews and comments. And just generally tell me what you think also did you know that you could offer the duct tape marketing system, our system to your clients, and build a complete marketing consulting coaching business, or maybe level up an agency with some additional services. That's right. Check out the duct tape marketing consultant network. You can find it at duct tape, marketing.com and just scroll down a little and find that offer our system to your clients tab.
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