How To Start A Referral Program

Cold calls, random emails and spreadsheets managed by the sales team will not create an efficient or effective referral process. Generating the highest-quality leads from customers means you need to know how to start a referral program—with the right strategies, teams and tools in place.


Step 1: Bring marketing and sales together

Marketing teams have the best data and communication channels to consistently approach customers for referrals in the right way, at the right time.

Once a referral is submitted, sales and marketing must work together to create a clear system for handling referrals by:

  • Creating a clear workflow and prioritization process for incoming referrals
  • Establishing a method for tracking referrals and providing updates to customers
  • Developing an outreach plan for communicating with referred prospects

“Referral programs managed by marketing teams are 3X more likely to hit their EOY revenue goals.”  Research: What You Should Know About B2B Referrals (But Probably Don’t)

Step 2: Plan out your referral experience

Deepening your relationships with customers and improving the referral experience will encourage your biggest brand advocates to regularly submit referrals. To do this, marketing teams must have a few things in place:



Step 3. Select your referral program technology

Choosing the right referral program software can help you scale and improve the referral process for your customers and team members.

Here’s a list of features to look for:


How to start a referral program with advocate marketing

Integrating your referral process with an advocate marketing program can make nurturing, engaging and rewarding customers easy and scalable.

Learn how other marketers are using advocate marketing to start a referral program in our eBook:


Let Influitive show you how to start a referral program today.

Let’s talk!