If you haven’t heard, Talkable just published The Handbook for Referral Marketing: From Science to Purchase. I had the opportunity to sit down with Matt Belitsky (@thedataguy), Director of Marketing at Talkable, to ask a few questions about the publication and how it came to fruition. Read all the details of our discussion below and be sure to access your own digital copy right away.
Q: Why write the Talkable Handbook for Referral Marketing. How do you explain “Referral Marketing” to a novice?
A: In preparation for my start date at Talkable, I researched the referral marketing industry. I discovered the lack of content to why referral marketing exists, why it is important, how it came to be, and the history behind it. Our competition tends to focus on execution and tactical details to help marketers implement referral marketing programs, but none were able to express why referral marketing is relevant in the first place. Why should referral, as a marketing channel, be top of mind for companies that are looking to drive more revenue?
When you take a step back from the term “Referral Marketing” – you realize it’s is a jargony term. At Talkable, when we talk about client success, we’re actually referencing systematic measurement of consumer decision making. The handbook proves that referral marketing is more than just a term, it’s an outcome to how we interact as individuals to influence and persuade each other.
Our team wrote this e-book as a collective unit. We authored it like a scientific publication. We carried out comprehensive research. We read the most modern referral-centric literature, studies and performed deep analysis. You will see significant amounts of citations and references throughout. This is the place you start- we’ve summarized case studies and thought-provoking articles. This guide will allow anyone who is interested in researching the referral marketing space to get a foundational understanding. We are very proud of the research and excited to share it.
Q: Did the research behind this handbook provide you with the confidence needed to attain Leadership position in the Referral Marketing space?
A: The vision behind this publication was to describe the science of human brain in decision-making and show that when you are able systematically track, measure and evaluate- that is essentially a referral program.
By being able to articulate this, we have become natural leaders in the referral marketing space. We have explained the connection between people and the performance of referral as a marketing channel. You should now have the confidence in us to help you build the referral marketing program for your business.
Q: There are several handbooks out there claiming the be the “definitive” guide to various industries, what sets this publication apart from the rest?
A: In addition to providing a narrative of what referral marketing is, you will be introduced to the Talkable platform, our fun corporate culture, and our brand voice. We are personable, friendly, easy to converse with and absolutely committed to driving customer success.
We have incorporated personalities from our Customer Success Team to provide tips and tricks for you along the way. The handbook leads into a worksheet (on page 26) that can be used as a planning document for your referral program. This worksheet takes the knowledge of what you learned in the guide and gives you the tools to build it yourself. The research in the handbook is cited and fact-based. We did all the hard work of combing through the internet, we read literature, studies, journals, and we distilled the researched into a digestible narrative.
Most “how to” guides out there use stock imagery to depict scenes or add value to the narrative. We chose to depict our story through the use of illustrations. Instead of slapping together some images, we spent ample time determining the best way to communicate our story, as beautifully and concisely as possible. The craftsmanship of the layout and imagery in the publication speak to the passion our team has in making sure everything looks right, even down to the final details.
This publication tells you everything you need to know to justify an investment into the referral channel for your online business- you don’t need to look anywhere else. We created this as much as a resource for you, as for ourselves. We use the content from this publication during our sales and client on boarding processes.
Q. It’s obvious that lots of thought went into this handbook. Are there specific areas you want to highlight that may be overlooked at first blush?
A: Part of the challenge of why our competitors haven’t created a publication like this, is because it’s tough! It was really difficult to take thousands of hours of research and condense it down into a digestible document. It’s easy to talk about referral and why it’s working, but it is much harder to talk about what referral is in the first place. In fact, it can be downright overwhelming. We needed to write this publication to educate ourselves as to why we do what we do, and now we’re excited to share it with the world.
We welcome discussion and challenge. We put our best foot forward in trying to provide this information to from an objective point of view. Feel free to reach out @Talkable so we can have a engage in conversation. We welcome healthy, constructive debate and are confident in defending our research and approach. Progress isn’t made without challenge.
I also want to reiterate this was a cross-functional, team effort. The learning experience has solidified our confidence as the front-runner in referral marketing. Since we’re able to understand why referral is so effective, now we can empower our prospects and customers to embrace it. Our team culture to collaborate while challenging the status quo allowed us to work quickly and diligently. I want to personally thank our amazing team for their time, thought leadership, and effort to make this happen!
Get your digital version of The Handbook for Referral Marketing: From Science to Purchase »