How to Launch Your Referral Marketing Program

Starting your referral marketing program does not have to be complicated. It all boils down to setting a marketing objective, creating your program, and promoting it. In this blog, you’ll learn how to start your referral marketing campaign.

An ipad and ipencil on a white wood background. The ipad has the Talkable create a campaign page up.  

Have a Clear Marketing Goal

Like any marketing channel, you need to have a main objective. Does your business need to focus on brand awareness, website traffic, customer acquisition, or sales? To create an effective marketing program, you need to utilize certain marketing channels and techniques that will help achieve your goal.

Referral marketing is an excellent channel for generating brand engagement, new customers, and revenue. Once you have a marketing goal, the next step is to work on creating your refer-a-friend program.

Campaign Placements 

Now that you have an objective, it’s time to think about how you should drive current customers to your referral program. Creating a referral marketing program in Talkable’s platform starts with selecting a campaign placement. Talkable’s platform offers four different campaign placements; each placement determines how your advocates will find your referral program. 

Floating Widget

The floating widget is a button that sits on the corner of any of your website pages and displays a call-to-action (CTA) message. The floating widget is great for increasing brand interactions and generating revenue. By utilizing the floating widget placement, Talkable’s data found it can drive 40% to 70% of referral sales. Due to the fact that your referral program is displayed to the public, new visitors can also share it with their friends. This means you’re opening your program up to an even greater audience than your existing customers.


A standalone campaign is similar to a landing page. This page cannot be found on your site and requires you to drive dedicated traffic to this specific link. If you’re looking to run a referral program is not as publicly facing use the standalone campaign, which does not post offers on your website. With a standalone campaign, you have more control over who sees your refer-a-friend program and who is offered your referral rewards.

Post Purchase

Post Purchase campaigns show up after a customer has completed their purchase. This means that only customers get access and can see the referral program. In addition, you can continue to segment which customers see your referral program based on the average value of their orders or their purchase history.


Gleam campaigns remind customers about their coupon codes with a floating bar displayed on their website. The Gleam campaign is very good at enticing customers to make purchases by consistently reminding them of the deal that they can take advantage of.

Also, take note your referral program can utilize multiple placements. When selecting campaign placements, think about the best combination of tactics to use in order to reach your marketing objective. Once you select your campaign placement type(s), now you have to determine what your advocates and their friends will interact and engage with.

Refer-a-Friend User Flow

Referral marketing user flows tend to follow similar steps. A user flow is the series of steps that your advocates and friends experience when they take part in a marketing program or campaign. Talkable has templated users flows that pre-populate once a campaign type is selected. In our Easy Editor is where you can customize each step of the user flow by changing the copy, colors, and images to reflect your brand. Also, we have an option for HTML and CSS pros to edit the code of their user flows. Here’s what a normal advocate and friend user flow looks like:

Advocate Sign-Up Page

A referral program user flow begins with the advocate accessing the sign-up page. The sign-up page displays the offer of what the advocate will receive for referring their friends. Here is also where Talkable verifies that the advocate is an existing customer.

Talkable's advocate sign-up page that asks for their first name and email


Advocate Share Page

Advocates can be anyone who is willing to share your product with their friends. The share page displays the advocate the offer and prompts them to share it. Here, your customers can pick which channel they would like to share the offer through email, facebook, or a share link.

the advocate share page show the offer of give $5, get $5 and asks them to share via email, facebook, or by link.

 Let’s say your advocate selected the email share option, then they would enter their friend's email address. Once a channel has been selected, the user flow moves onto the next step. 

Friend Share Email

The friend that was referred by your advocate is now sent an email that displays their referral offer. The friend gets the email with a pre-populated or custom message from their friend. The referred friend now can take a look at the reward and decide if they’d like to click through.

Friend share email with custom message from friend and a call-to-action asking the friend to claim their reward

Friend Claim Page

Once the referred friend claims their offer, they are taken to the friend claim page. The page will prompt the referred friend to enter their email.

Screen Shot 2018-10-12 at 9.45.21 AM-811478-edited

After entering their email, the friend will receive their coupon code to get the discount.

The friend claim page shows the coupon code they earned and has an orange call-to-action that says show now

Advocate Reward Page

Once the advocate’s friend has made a purchase with their referral code, the advocate is sent an email that provides them with their reward for making a successful referral.

Advocates see the advocate reward page that shows them their reward and invites them to redeem it

Once the advocate gets their reward, we’ve now ended their journey as a friend. However, the cycle will start all over again when the friend decides to refer and becomes the advocate.

Promote Your Program

The last suggested step to creating your refer-a-friend program is to promote it. Even though your referral program could be capitalizing on your website traffic, programs that get promoted always perform better than ones that are left to fend for themselves.

Referral marketing is an incredible marketing channel that everyone should be taking advantage of; if you’re still concerned about getting started consider partnering with Talkable. Our team of experts will launch your first program for you

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Talkable is a SaaS platform that allows companies to profit from the science behind referrals, while increasing sales revenue and preventing fraud.

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