In a discussion on Facebook, Ben Dixon, CEO at NaXum’s explores why he believes retail businesses today should seriously consider opening their own referral marketing channels.
He argues that first with Amazon, becoming the pre-eminent shopping destination online, and keeping customer DATA away from the brand whose products are being sold, that brands should sell direct themselves.
Then that with the advent of the global Covid19 Pandemic, brands are learning how important it is to be in a real conversation with their customers outside of the retail world to continue to grow.
“We saw the power of companies that had already created referral marketing channels during the pandemic big time! While other brands failed or barely scraped by, commerce did not stop, it just shifted. Millions of people at home, with extra time on social media, shifted funds spend at retail stores to buying from friends and affiliates of brands that had open referral marketing channels.”
On the spectrum of referral marketing, you can also look at direct sales companies and even multi-level marketing companies for their growth in 2020 and 2021.
There were multiple companies that experienced 200-500% growth from the shifts in consumer behavior.
Whether your gig was selling shampoo at Monat Global, designer sticker nails at Color Street, or nutritional beverages to curb your appetite at Plexus, these brands saw unprecedented growth in a time where the market forces of the pandemic filled their sales.
Ben Dixon interviewed 3x CEO’s who all experienced unprecedented growth from the pandemic and they share their stories on a panel from the Direct Selling Executives Forum.
Why does Ben say traditional Brands should open their own referral marketing channel?
1) Viral Growth
Referral marketing channels begin by inviting your brand’s most raving fans to promote you. More than a customer rewards program, you are incentivizing your fans to earn money for sharing your brand with others.
There are many flavors of programs including influencer programs, affiliate marketing, and even direct sales. The flavor you choose widely depends on the type of culture you desire to create.
“The viral growth that comes from having a channel where you do not need a marketing budget, but only pay for a new customer when your affiliate brings the purchasing customer to you, is so powerful, brands would be foolish to not include referral marketing as a channel in their business plan. ” – Ben Dixon
2) Control The Conversation With Your Customer
By creating a referral marketing channel, you can model the messaging you’d like your promoters to share.
You’re not relegated to the middle shelf at Sephora and the brand imagery that your ad agency drafted for you.
“Your staff stewards the responsibility of daily creating curated content and messaging about your brand that the referral agents will use to win new customers. This open conversation puts the power in your hands as a brand to tell your story the way you want it.” – Ben Dixon
3) Insights & Data
What do you truly know about your customers?
By running a referral marketing platform, technology can gather data and insights from the interactions your promoters have with prospective customers and give you a true perspective of not only who your customers are by why your customers buy from you.
“The marketplace is fierce and changes constantly. To be an effective brand today is to be active in the conversation of the marketplace and really understand what is attracting new customers to your brand. Only once a technology feedback loop is in place can you have a basis for making real decisions to grow your company.” -Ben Dixon
Ben Dixon loves referral marketing. His family found direct sales back in 2006 and had success using technology to create home-based businesses. Since 2010, Ben has focused on serving referral marketing, party plan, mlm, and direct sales companies across the globe with the technology they require to empower their passionate fans to virally grow their businesses.
To see episodes from the direct selling executives forum, visit the youtube channel.
To request a tour of the NaXum platform, visit Naxum.com