Customers Talk. So Jump On Referral Marketing


Word of mouth is what helped Airbnb and Dropbox grow quickly into the well-known brands they are today and you should be doing it too.

As a potential client, you may ask your friends about their opinions on a specific product or place, and as an actual customer, you’ll probably give out a recommendation yourself. In the business world this is known as referral marketing, and it’s one of the best forms of marketing when it comes to making sales.What makes it especially successful is its accuracy in targeting specific audiences since people tend to know what their friends like.

Customers will always talk between themselves so it’s important to ask yourself one question when providing different services and products and that is “What do customers want?”. When clients receive a great product or consistently great customer service from your business, they are likely to spread the word about it and that increases your chances to grow your business. Thus, the foundation of building up a company is based on referrals. There are many benefits to referral marketing and they include:

Transferred trust and implied endorsement

The first thing needed is for a buyer to trust a seller. People don’t like risks so when someone refers you to a buyer there is immediate credibility since the person who referred you is someone the buyer already trusts. Your most loyal supporters are more likely to give positive recommendations to their friends so the potential risk for loss is lowered. An added bonus is spreading a good word about your company has a huge potential reach today since people are hyper-connected to others through social media, apps and blogs.

Cost-effective client acquisition

When customers refer you to their friends and family, you’re essentially getting a tailored message to a specific audience. Because people recognize what their friends like or are willing to spend money on, referral marketing has high success rates for target audiences. A HUGE plus is you’re not putting time or a dime into referral marketing like you would have to with cold calling when you’re starting out or SEO when you’re more established so it’s free advertising—cha-ching!

Reduced sale cycle and closing

With referrals, you don’t have to spend as much time selling yourself because the trust between you and your prospective client has already been established. As a result, you can focus your time on creating a customized solution for the potential client.

Incentive to spread the word through benefits

If you can come up with a valuable two-sided referral program that benefits current clients and prospective customers, it will encourage existing clients to share your business with others because there’s an incentive. Benefits make current customers happy while alleviating the risk for new clients, and that has a major impact on your conversion rate.

Referral marketing, especially in the beginning, is the foundation for many companies, and it’s what helps grow businesses into distinguished brands overtime. So whether you’re starting out or better established, jump on the referral marketing bandwagon. Customers who are naturally inclined to recommend your business to their friends are big opportunities for you to increase your sales rate.

Social Media Tactics and Online Credibility





Social media is crucial when it comes to increasing your online credibility, and a lot is said about successful social media strategies: there’s no such thing as over-posting… respond to each comment… talk about everything to gain more followers… In other words, engage. Although all of these ideas are significant, the most important social media tactics to increase online credibility aren’t related to community engagement in the literal sense.

Narrowing your focus by creating hashtags for your social media content increases online credibility. Hashtags are used to search terms in a post and to group posts to similar topics. Keep in mind the fewer hashtags you use in a post, the better. #Overusing #hashtags #for #every #keyword #can #result #in #your #content #looking #like #spam. Not to mention, every word in your content is actually a search term online. But remember, the use of hashtags varies depending on the social media platform. For example, Twitter started hashtags and generally uses them to search and share information. Facebook, on the other hand, recently enabled hashtags, but they are used for more humorous purposes than they are used for searching/grouping purposes.

Social media and SEO go hand-in-hand. The more followers you have on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn—you name it—the more opportunities you create to share your content and build buzz around your brand. As a result, linking your social media sites to your brand’s site and creating share buttons for your content make it easier for people to not only view and pass on your information but also increase your SEO search and online credibility.

There is one thing that is more important than hashtags and linking and that’s consistency. When it comes to effective social media use, consistency seems harder to accomplish than anything else. It doesn’t mean you have to post 10 pieces of content every day, but if you want to be a credible online source you must post content regularly. However, it’s hard to be consistent with the plethora of social media platforms available these days. The first piece of advice: Every social media platform isn’t necessarily for you. Take the time to research and understand what platforms might be better for your brand before diving into everything. Second, if you do use multiple social media platforms consider creating a timetable for your content with Hootsuite. Hootsuite is a scheduled posting site that allows you to manage and post content to your various social media sites. In essence, it makes your social media life so much easier.

Online credibility isn’t about getting the most likes, retweets, and comments through social media tools. It’s about generating quality, relevant content that benefits and engages the reader through digital platforms.

Instagram = Instabrand

Participating in social media is a must for building brands these days, and while Facebook and Twitter are the common platforms to partake in, Instagram is on the rise as a major tool for where social media users spend a significant portion of their time.

People don’t access the internet the same way they used to 10 years ago. With mobile media surpassing online media consumption for the first time, most mobile media activity comes through an application. And the data specifically surrounding the Instagram app is staggering.

According to an article in Fast Company, there are over 100 million active users, 1.6 billion likes, 40 million uploaded photos and 20 billion shared photos per day on Instagram. If your business is targeting millennials, the numbers are even better since Generation Y smartphone users spend an astonishing 439 minutes per month on the photo app.

So the question is why is Instagram so popular? The answer is simple: Instagram is an easy and convenient way to share stories, reactions and experiences through photos. For businesses, it’s a way for consumers to window shop—to get a taste of your brand—and easily share your products and services with others. In other words, Instagram is unique to other types of content because it visually highlights storytelling. Not to mention, Instagram has a newsfeed similar to Facebook’s, but the photo app’s is even better since 100% of Instagram posts appear on a consumer’s newsfeed whereas Facebook’s feed doesn’t necessarily show all the posts on a page a fan follows. Instagram also has the benefits of Twitter with the use of hashtags to target brands to people who are interested in your specific market instead of wasting efforts on those who are indifferent.

As Instagram continues to rapidly grow—there were 50 million new members in the app’s first six months, 200 million users in 2013 and 300 million users in 2014—the key lesson to take away is if you’re not on Instagram, you’re missing out on a valuable marketing opportunity.

Why Isn’t Anyone Visiting My Website?

You’ve invested time and money into designing the perfect website for your company thinking business will increase, but you’re not seeing results—what’s the problem? Perhaps your site lacks web traffic and in order to increase exposure, you must do these three things:

Search Engine Optimization

Are you utilizing SEO? Most web traffic will come from search engines, so your site needs to be optimized for specific keywords in order to get to the top of search engine results.Note: Most consumers typically browse only the first page of search engine results for products and services, and getting in the top results can be tough. There are definitely measures you can take which will increase organic traffic, but with Google’s constantly evolving algorithm it pays to have an expert craft a professional SEO strategy. Fortress specializes in SEO so contact us if you’re looking to stay on top of the market.

Social Media

Are you using social media like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and any other applicable sources properly? These tools are hyper popular and are a must to successful promotion of your website. Social media tools have the ability to share information to a large and diverse group of people in an instant. Not to mention, gaining new contacts, building relationships, sharing interests and increasing sales are real potential bonuses.


What is the first thing a visitor sees on your homepage? Do you have a contact tab clearly visible and accessible to viewers? In other words, is your website user-friendly? If your site isn’t easy to navigate, you might be driving away potential customers. Make sure to plan where you want visitors to start, where you want them to go and how they can contact you if they have any questions or simply want to get in touch. And most importantly, make sure to respond to any inquiries!

The internet is a big space and, in order to get authentic traffic to your site, you need a plan to implement SEO, social media and interaction.



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