With Spring taking it's time to arrive this year, it was a delight to huddle with our favourite clients and colleagues in the luscious greenery (amongst the flamingos) to talk referral, trust and the future of marketing!
At every event we run there are always great snippets of insight and information from the Mention Me team, but it's especially wonderful to see our clients inspiring each other with ways to make their referral program really shine.
Marketing in an era of diminishing trust
First to take to the stage was Mention Me's CEO and co-founder Andy Cockburn.
He discussed the landscape facing many marketing teams at the moment; declining trust in advertising, the challenges of a move to online and the imminent GDPR deadline.
Successful marketeers are well used to challenges and embrace change. So looking to the future, Andy demonstrated how brands can build trust through, not only referral, but also engaging with and rewarding existing customers.
4 secrets of running a successful referral scheme
Next on stage was Simon Dring. As Head of Client Success, Simon has a unique insight into how brands across all sectors turn referral into a key customer acquisition channel.
His 4 secrets to a successful referral programme?
- Be remarkable
- Do your homework
At this point he really did have everyone doing their homework, with a live copywriting task focusing on developing messaging for sharing channels.
AB testing is key to optimising a referral programme and the Mention Me referral platform enables brands to test all elements of the referral funnel.
Client Success Manager Giles Harrison gave attendees an insight into the best experiments to try in the early days following launch.
We recommend that brands promote referral at the point of greatest customer delight. This will vary by product type and whether the purchase takes place online or instore.
Our Client Success Manager Zoe talked about the different promotion points and the effort involved in launching the promotion versus the impact on results.
Brands in Conversation
With so many attendees at different stages in their referral marketing journey, we held panel discussions split into newcomers and established referral brands.
On the Pink Track we were joined by 3 great brands who have recently kicked off their referral programmes: Pasta Evangelists, Hive and Plumo.
They shared tips on what to concentrate on in the early days, recommendations on developing testing plans and highlighted any tricky bits along the way.
On the Gold Track we welcomed Eve Mattress, Biscuiteers, Tribe and Belstaff. They've all had their programmes live for some time now and are seeing some great results. So much so that several of them went on to become award winners later in the day.
Picking up from the topics covered in Andy's presentation, they spoke about how referral can help build trust with potential customers. They are also experienced at running AB tests so shared their insight into what worked for their brand.
Delivering referral excellence & the future of trust marketing
Our VP of Product and Marketing Courtney Wylie brought the presentations to a close with a peek at some of the things being developed to ensure that the Mention Me platform continues to deliver fantastic results for our clients.
One of our most recent developments has been a fantastic revamp of our Client dashboard. Not only is it more intuitive, it delivers even more insight into AB testing results.
No marketing presentation today is complete without mentioning GDPR......so clients took at look at the steps we have taken to ensure all programmes are GDPR ready.
Finally, Courtney shared some future developments to ensure we help our clients build trust across their customer lifecycle.
Last, but no means least, we held our annual Referral Marketing Awards.
Over the previous two weeks, judging had been taking place of all those programmes shortlisted in our Referral Showcase.
Amongst the topiary and flamingos and sipping a glass or two of champagne, the winners were announced:
Winner - Ted Baker
Runner up - TeaPigs
Best Graphic Design
Winner - Biscuiteers
Runner up - Wonderbly
Best AB test
Winner - Benefit Cosmetics
Runner up - PayAsUGym
Winner - MatchesFashion.com
Most Innovative use of the Platform
Winner - Sun Savers
Runner up - Tonik Energy
Winner - Swoon Editions
Runner up - Hive Home
Winner - Eve
Runner up - Missguided
A great day topped off by a grand awards giving ceremony - not to mention cupcakes to celebrate our 5th birthday - with drinks down the road providing a very satisfying way to end the day, sharing stories amongst all the attendees.