Referral marketing is the fastest-growing form of customer acquisition – so much so that it’s becoming increasingly hard to find a successful brand which doesn’t operate some kind of refer-a-friend scheme.
It’s also fundamentally simple: your existing fans and customers are rewarded for telling their friends about you, those friends are incentivised to shop, everyone’s happy.
Once a function of PR, but now very much embedded within everyone’s marketing strategies, influencer marketing is the biggest game in town. And by big, we mean soon-to-be $15 billion big. Yep, you read that right.
But, in the light of recent reports highlighting the difficulty in the influencer driven game, is it time to think again? We explore the past, present and future of influencer marketing, and take a look at the technology that’s helping marketers engage millions of genuine voices with genuine influence, delivering genuine results.
Let’s start by going back – and I mean way back, when internet just about reached every household. Gone were the days of super-expensive billboards and celebrity driven ads. This was a new dawn, apparently saving us from marketing overload, where everything was measurable, where scale kept prices down and where campaigns could be tweaked or switched in a heartbeat.
The days when consumers would support brands without knowing anything about them are over. The internet has made it easier than ever to learn about the ethics and practices of companies which consumers support. Companies with track records of ethical missteps or questionable policies can’t hide those blunders anymore. Instead, they bear the brunt of bad social media buzz, which can have a very real impact on their stock prices and overall reputations.
Chances are that when you think referral and travel, one brand immediately springs to mind: Airbnb.
They’ve became a household name on the back of their referral programme. In fact, Airbnb — alongside the likes of Dropbox, Tesla, and Uber — just about wrote the referral rulebook, so you’d assume their scheme would be right up there with the very best. But here’s the thing: if you take a look at Airbnb’s referral programme, it’s actually starting to look worryingly out of date.
So that’s exactly what we’ve done. Below, you’ll find our expert take on Airbnb’s refer-a-friend scheme. But, first, a little history… Read more
Customers expect a lot. And, if you don’t give them what they want, they quickly go elsewhere. Can’t make free returns? See ya. Can’t ship to a secondary address? Adios. Now, according to the Ivy League data-scientists at the Wharton School of Business, 83% of customers want to refer their friends to their favourite brands and services. Crazily, 87% of brands don’t let them.
Smashing it since 2006, the UK-based fashion firm boohoo is both an ecommerce icon and a multi-billion-pound empire, parenting other hugely-successful brands including Pretty Little Thing and the US phenomenon, Nasty Gal.
So, it goes without saying that Buyapowa are incredibly honoured to be powering their first ever refer-a-friend programme. As of today, millions of boohoo customers can introduce their friends and earn £5 credit to spend at boohoo.com (we’re guessing a lot of that credit’s going to be spent on boohoo’s headline-grabbing new collaboration with the ultimate It girl, Paris Hilton), while their friends will each receive 25% off their first shop. Better still, thanks to Buyapowa’s unique gamification feature, everyone who successfully refers a friend will get the chance to win a holiday worth £1000. Read more