Nuts & Bolts - Bookclub: Marketing Instinct 101
The hypothalamus is the part of the brain that regulates aggression, hunger, thirst, pleasure, material behavior and, according to Duct Tape Marketing blog's John Jantsch, the desire to refer.
"The hypothalamus likes validation—it registers pleasure in doing good and being recognized for it … this is the social drive for making referrals."
In Jantsch's latest book, "The Referral Engine: Teaching Your Business to Market Itself," he shows marketers how they can use customer referrals to fuel their businesses. According to him, referred leads are more qualified than the average prospect, and are ready to buy. Why? Because a trusted friend or colleague has referred your company, so the element of trust is in your favor.
But marketers don't have to look solely to their customers to get the word out—employees and strategic partners are key to building a solid referral engine. Jantsch writes, "Happy employees are much more likely to represent the brand in a positive manner. Let's face it: Companies aren't capable of making emotional connections; people are."
To further instill the importance of referrals, Jantsch offers the idea of Make-a-Referral Mondays, in which every company member refers one person to another business, whether it's one of the company's strategic partners or another business that has provided an excellent product or customer experience. The goal is to match someone in need with a best-in-class solution, Jantsch explains, and it shifts the focus from receiving to making referrals.
"The Referral Engine" is stuffed with examples from across the board—Outskirts Press, Affordable Concrete Cutting, Southwest Airlines, TerraCycle, etc.—providing readers with an in-depth look at the myriad ways companies, both big and small, have been successful after implementing a systematic approach to generating referrals via customers, staff and strategic partners. The book is a definite conversation starter, and offers every individual within an organization—from marketing to customer service—an opportunity to cultivate referrals.