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Sunday, February 11, 2007

List moving, email marketing and referral compensation

With the new email system at, I've been amalgamating and organizing my lists from a variety of places into one system. The idea is to gain some cohesion and more effectively manage our email and newsletter campaigns. As a result, I've been sending out some one-time emails and if you have requested your name be removed from my list, it has been done.

I really like and would recommend them without any kind of referral fee or commission but since they pay it, might as well post the link here ....

They'll give me $30 if you sign up, it seems.

This raises an interesting question for the marketing process -- should your company have a referral fee or 'leads reward' program, internally for employees or externally for referral sources and the like?

Clearly, many businesses do it, so they appear to get some value from the process. I'm not sure if a formal referral compensation system is a good idea because, I sense, most people providing really good referrals don't require or want to be paid for the referral -- they are doing it because they really like the way you conducted your business.

Nevertheless, it is always wise to thank the people who are referring business your way, and (unless there are ethical guidelines prohibiting it), I don't see why you shouldn't recognize the thank-you with something more tangible such as a dinner out, some sports tickets, or the like. A softer (and really fair) way to compensate the person you are receiving referrals from is to go out of your way to refer business to them (if appropriate) or maybe give them some extra service or recognition if they wish it.

Does your business have a referral compensation program? I welcome your observations because there are a number of questions here. How many participants do these programs attract? Do they truly increase the volume of referrals, and their quality? And would these programs work in the business-to-business sector, or purely in the business-to-consumer (renovation market, and so on) environment? You can post a comment (anonymously if you wish), or email me at, phone 888-432-3555 ext 224.

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