People are four times more likely to buy a product or service when referred by a friend. Seventy-seven percent of consumers are more likely to buy a new product when learning about it from friends or family. Ninety-two percent of consumers trust referrals from people they know.

You have likely heard these stats, and many others, proving the efficacy of referral marketing. But, behind these impressive data points is one critical component: referral marketing software. Without a platform that manages referrals and tracks customer retention, these stats are simply unachievable.

Referral management software can help your team test different campaign strategies, automate referral link tracking, and maximize the ROI of your referral campaign to save you time and money. Here are five reasons why referral management software is a good investment.

Automation features help you work efficiently

When referral marketing first started, it was things like punch cards and spreadsheets that helped businesses track referrals and loyalty. The amount of manual labor it took to identify top participants, validate their referrals, and allocate rewards made referral marketing untenable for start-ups and smaller companies.

Referral management software automates many of these elements to make it easy for teams to set up campaigns efficiently. GrowSurf’s automagic form detection works with any form you already have on your website to automatically add new participants and track referrals. Referral marketing software will automate emails for you to promote your campaign, give new participants their unique referral link, notify winners, and send monthly reminders.

Automation built into platforms like GrowSurf also takes care of running a referral campaign, from email link tracking to reward fulfillment. These tools automatically issue rewards to participants who reach referral goals through integrations with Webhooks, Zapier, or Tango Card. As customer retention software, referral marketing platforms also provide a dashboard of each participant’s activities: when they signed up, how they shared, who they referred, and more. Your team can quickly identify top performers and those who may be leaving your program soon.

Reach more people and channels to scale your program

When you first start out with referral marketing, tracking things manually seems manageable. But, what happens when you grow to hundreds – or even thousands – of customers? It’s no longer feasible to track referrals by hand.

Referral management software also helps you scale your program quickly. “One of the biggest benefits of buying referral marketing software from an established vendor is that it virtually future-proofs your program,” wrote one expert.

The automation elements can help scale a referral program, as well as email link tracking and campaign manager tools. Spread the word about your referral program with a dedicated landing page, and seamlessly integrate your referral campaign onto other parts of your site with embeddable, one-line-of-code, plug-and-play elements. Referral software helps you reach more people on more channels with just a few clicks.

Collect data on what’s working – and what isn’t

The goal for most referral marketing campaigns is to increase sales, brand awareness, and repeat customers. But, a side benefit to referral marketing campaigns is the ability to learn more about your customers. It’s a benefit that can only be realized through referral marketing software.

“The insights into customers’ purchase behavior that you gain from referral marketing software’s analytics reports can be invaluable in terms of fine-tuning and realigning even other parts of your marketing plan,” explained one guide. “Referral marketing software helps to identify, target, and reward your most valuable customers through in-depth data analysis.”

GrowSurf’s premium-level analytics show you campaign performance, conversion rates, and channel performance to understand the effectiveness of your referral campaign. Adjust your strategy as you go and avoid spending on a strategy that isn’t delivering results. Combine insights from your campaign with data from your sales team and transaction data to get deeper insight into your customers.

Find which rewards work best

There are many ways to reward your customers for promoting your brand to their network. Referral software offers the ability to test different incentives, as well as different ways to structure your rewards, to see what works best. Not only can referral management software integrate with third-party vendors to automate rewards, it can also help you pinpoint an incentive that your participants will respond to. GrowSurf even lets you review and approve rewards, so you can verify for yourself when a participant reaches a referral goal and release the reward in one click.

Reduce the risk of fraud

Some start-ups shy away from referral marketing for fear that bad actors will simply take advantage of their rewards – without taking action to support the brand. With any successful referral program, fraud is inevitable, but referral management software like GrowSurf comes with a comprehensive anti-fraud system that flags suspicious participants and lets you block or disqualify them.

GrowSurf can also notify you when referrals happen and new participants join your campaign. Referral software can also let you review rewards before they are designated.

GrowSurf comes equipped with other anti-fraud solutions: blacklisting/whitelisting, bulk fraud deletion, fraud tracing, and reCAPTCHA.

To learn more about what referral marketing software can do for you, sign up for a free product demo.